Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Lynchburg EDA hears ways to boost area's attractiveness to businesses

Site selection consultant Jay Garner of Garner Economics told leaders in Lynchburg that if they want to attract new business and bolster economic development in their region, they must address the issues of ease of access and a lack of project-ready sites. 

The News Advance reported that although Lynchburg has many assets in the “quality of place” category, Garner said the city’s “Achilles heel” is its lack of project-ready land. Garner has been hired by the Lynchburg EDA to help devise a new strategic plan for the authority. More here

Monday, November 19, 2012

'Unity' event showcases economic development survey

A "Unity in the Community" luncheon co-sponsored by the Flagler County Chamber of Commerce & Affiliates and the Flagler County Department of Economic Opportunity, featured a presentation on the results of a community economic development survey. 

 The group conducted 279 one-on-one interviews with a variety of groups representing residents, business owners and local government officials and staff. 

Respondents identified their biggest concerns as the lack of diversified employment opportunities, a lack of progress in economic development efforts, lack of a unified focus and  a lack of consistent execution in economic development efforts. More here.

New N.C. governor ups competition for job development

A former economic development executive for Duke Energy Corp. has been elected governor of North Carolina and is expected to make that state more competitive with neighbor South Carolina in the competition for new jobs. 

Gov.-elect Pat McCrory is credited with compiling a solid jobs record during 14 years as mayor of Charlotte and is the state's first Republican governor in 20 years.

Officials and executives who know McCrory predict he’ll make economic development a priority and work diligently to recruit jobs. More here.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Kenya: Now It Is Our Turn to Brand Towns, Cities and Even Counties

In Africa, a call to adopt place branding and place marketing techniques in order to further their economy and thwart increasing competition.  More here.

Regional economic development group making strides

The Peoria area has developed a new regional economic development group. 

The group's steering committee, bearing a new name, Focus Forward CI (for central Illinois), approved a prospective budget and announced the launch of a new website, www.focusforwardci.com.

"We've done all this in 60 days with the help of 700 people," said Jim Baumgartner. More here.

Virginia economic development officials launch mobile app

More will follow suit: Virginia economic development officials have launched a "YesVA" mobile app to help bring business to the state. Users can perform site and building searches, compare Virginia to other states,  view profiles of Virginia communities, regions and metropolitan areas, as well as to receive news. Users can also contact  state economic development officials with the app.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Measuring the American Dream

Xavier University’s American Dream Composite Index™ (ADCI) measures the extent to which people living in the United States achieve the American Dream.  The ADCI is based on a random sample of no fewer than 1,000 adults who are surveyed online each month, with at least 400 respondents recurring from the previous month.

According to the latest survey results, we are 65.18 percent of the way to fully achieving the American Dream with room to grow 34.82 percent. 

Economic development professionals can use this tool to improve local public policy, infrastructure and asset availability that contribute to making the American Dream easier to realize. CEOs will likely prefer to locate their business operations in communities where residents perceive the American Dream is genuinely achievable.

Launched last year, the ADCI is a useful measure that the ED pro will want to monitor and use to develop local strategic plans to make their communities as competitive as possible for capital attraction. More here.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Colleges join state marketing effort

The state's public colleges and universities have all agreed to join a marketing effort to help sell Virginia to economic investors.

A memorandum of understanding signed Monday with the Virginia Economic Development Partnership is "a needed catalyst" that will foster collaboration and further the goal of "graduating job creators, not just job takers," said Virginia Commonwealth University President Michael Rao, who represented his colleagues at the ceremony.

The agreement formalizes a long-standing relationship with universities that is intended to help corporate clients understand the resources that the state's higher education system offers them, said Martin Briley, president and CEO of VEDP.

"Not to be dramatic, but there's an economic development war under way globally, the victory in which is expressed in jobs," he said. More here.

New marketing brand pitched to business leaders

“Brampton’s most powerful, yet underutilized asset is the raw energy of its human potential,” said Gavin Barrett, of Barrett and Welsh, who delivered the keynote address during the Mayor’s Annual Business Breakfast held at the Rose Theatre. “We must unleash that asset and leverage it to build a mythology for Brampton’s economic brand.”

The city is rolling out a new marketing campaign that strives to set Brampton a part in a highly competitive international marketplace. More here.

In Houston economic development, ‘success follows success’

While Houston’s energy industry — and related support fields — has always been the area’s bread and butter, recent efforts by economic development officials to diversify the local economy have resulted in a tangible increase in jobs in other fields. More here.

Economic efforts making gains in Northern KY

Economic development efforts in Northern Kentucky are showing signs of great success despite the lingering effects of the Great Recession and aggressive competition from neighboring Ohio.  More here

Why Janet Miller loves hipsters, sort of

Twenty years ago people fresh out of college didn't care much about what city they'd wind up in. It was all about the company.

But today's young professionals are increasingly picking the city first before embarking on a career, and that change has shifted the way economic development programs are run.

"“It used to be all about: Go get the company and people will follow," said Janet Miller, chief economic development officer with the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. "These days it's about the balance between jobs and the employees. Cities that are going to be successful in the future are going to be the ones that are attractive to talent and the companies will follow." More here.

Promise of jobs buried by changing market

 By Ron Maxey

SENATOBIA — If everything had gone as envisioned, this Tate County community would be halfway into a five-year plan to generate 500 jobs.

Instead, local leaders are trying to market a largely empty building that they thought would be humming with the sounds of high-tech solar panels being manufactured.

What went wrong, those involved say, can be summed up in two words: China and unpredictability. More here.

Destin, Chamber of Commerce plan economic development partnership

By MATT ALGARIN / The Destin Log

DESTIN — The city and Chamber of Commerce are working to come up with a strategy to spur economic development.

“Economic development has to be localized for Destin and a plan created for Destin,” said Shane Moody, president and CEO of the Destin Area Chamber of Commerce. “We want Okaloosa County to stay on the map as well, but when small, high-tech businesses are looking for a place to locate, we want them to think about Destin.”

The chamber-formed working group would be comprised of representatives from the chamber, the city, the Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County and business partners.

Moody said that job-creating partnerships between cities and chambers are nothing new, but is indicative of a trend that is taking shape all over the country in communities such Charleston, S.C., Savannah, Ga., and Hilton Head, S.C. More here.