Former Republican Congressman Rob Simmons will be paid $75,000 a year for the next four years as the state’s newly appointed state business advocate.

Gov. M. Jodi Rell appointed Simmons Monday to the position of business advocate, which was created by legislation in 2006.

In a press release Rell said, “Rob has been a strong advocate for business throughout his career in the State House and in the United States Congress. His efforts on behalf of the Groton Submarine Base and defense industries in Connecticut were an invaluable part of Team Connecticut’s success in keeping the base open and saving 31,000 jobs.”

As business advocate, Simmons “will serve as a clearing house for all businesses regarding public and private programs available to assist business. It also is to reach out to small and micro businesses that need help getting through the bureaucracy to assist them in navigating the variety of state regulations and programs that apply to business.”

“This appointment allows me to continue the important work I did as a State Representative and Member of Congress in promoting Connecticut’s economy and business community,” Simmons said. “I am looking forward to working with Governor Rell in this vital activity.”