With state start-up funding set to be cut, other cities looking to copy St. Louis’s success

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) - Mayors from around the country are in St. Louis this week to see why start-ups are having so much success here.

But this comes as Governor Grietens proposes cutting their state funding by almost 75 percent.

Plans to slash state funding that helps grow local startups isn't sitting well with developers.  It was what attracted Chad Stiening to St. Louis when he started Kypha, "I wouldn’t be here and the company and the fund and all the people surrounding that wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that first investment."

That investment and ones like it come from the Missouri Technology Corporation.

The state funded it with $23 million dollars this year, but Governor Eric Greitens wants to cut that to $5 million for fiscal year 2018.

This worries Stiening, "At the same time we're seeing some states really putting a signficant investment into that infrastructure our state is pulling dollars back."

Missouri has started become a hub for startups, but developers say cuts like these could impact their long-term growth and the overall economy of the state.

Dennis Lower CEO of Cortex is also worried about the pull back in funding, “Decisions will be made and we're going to lose companies and were going to lose investment in the state and it's not something you can simply turn it back on."

For Lower, Cortex is an innovation incubator and thinks that the toll on the state's ability to create high paying jobs and retain an educated workforce that will ultimately result in less tax dollars.

This comes as national eyes look toward St. Louis hoping to copy the startup success we've had until now.

Lower told conference members, "The innovation work group of the US conference of mayors with the Brookings Institution to study our ecosystem because it's been recognized because it's been recognized by Brookings and other institutions for how you grow a startup hub in a second-tier city."

We reached out to Governor Greitens for a comment on the proposed cuts and haven't heard back from his office yet.

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