Thursday, June 04, 2009

Econ development every now and then Thursday returns!!

Back by quasi popular demand is the sometimes reoccurring theme post of economic development highlights being made... sadly... in other locations other than Kingman at the present time. Got five articles to share today, and one is sort of a repeat but it has plenty of information worth sharing.

So let's pump this party already...

City receives Eagle Award for economic development

The City of Centennial has received the 2009 Eagle Award from the Southeast Business Partnership in honor of the city’s commitment to economic development.

Jack O'Boyle, a member of the partnership’s board of directors, presented the award to Mayor Randy Pye at the organization’s annual awards luncheon on May 29.

According to O’Boyle, a former mayor of Lone Tree, Centennial was recognized, in part, because of its commitment to fostering economic growth, not just in Centennial, but along the entire southeast I-25 corridor.

“Mayor Pye has demonstrated time and time again that he is a regionalist,” O’Boyle said. “He made it very easy for he and I and Mayor Nancy Sharpe of Greenwood Village to work together with the local businesses in our own best interests, without trying to cut each other off at the knees.”

Centennial, an 8-year-old city and the newest addition to the cities along the I-25 corridor between Hampden and Lincoln avenues, has become increasingly focused on encouraging a favorable business climate, Pye says.


Other recent corporate coups in Centennial include Comcast’s new western-states data center and the impending arrival of IKEA, the world’s largest home-furnishings manufacturer and retailer, which is constructing a 400,000-square-foot outlet in the city.

You know, it is rather easy to tell from this article that the city of Centennial is a great place to do business in. Honestly, if that is all I got out of this article... it is way more than enough.

Oh... and watch the term 'data center'... a good sort of business to attempt to attract to this area.

Union City Community & Economic Development Committee Presents "Discover Union City... America's Next Boomtown"

UNION CITY, IN and UNION CITY, OH--(Marketwire - June 4, 2009) - The Union City Community and Economic Development Committee (UCCEDC) will present "Discover Union City... America's Next Boomtown" on Friday, June 19th, 2009. Union City's location on the Indiana-Ohio border gives it the unique ability to leverage business incentives from either state and to draw from the labor pool and quality of life opportunities from both.


The scheduled events, however, are what will highlight current initiatives in alternative energy education, business opportunities, and quality of life. Local entrepreneurship, natural resources, a passion for training our youth for the global economy, and our agricultural heritage has made Union City a hotbed for alternative energy development.

A wind turbine groundbreaking at Union City Community High School is planned for 10:30 AM. Union City is the first community in the nation to have wind turbines producing energy for both a school and city. The ceremony will include comments by the private and public partners working on innovative curriculum to educate and train high school students in the alternative energy fields. Students will also speak on how the program has already made a difference in their lives.
Even though that today is a fine day to be a wind turbine here in Kingman... I get the feeling we are falling further behind. Looks like Union City doesn't think the wind turbines are all that ugly to look at.

But imagine that... a city actually out there marketing itself to attract new opportunities.

Mo. gov. signs economic development bill
Mo. gov. signs bill expanding tax breaks for some businesses, restricting others

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- A tax break is on the way for thousands of Missouri businesses.

Gov. Jay Nixon signed legislation Thursday eliminating Missouri's corporate franchise tax for most of the businesses that pay it and enlarging the tax incentives available for employers who expand their payrolls or plants.


The ultimate cost or benefit of the legislation is somewhat unclear; a legislative oversight office had not completed a financial estimate of the measure by Thursday.

Nixon praised the law as a "decisive action to help businesses create jobs."

"By expanding the number of economic tools at our disposal, we'll make sure the world knows Missouri is open for business, and we'll get our workers back on the job," Nixon said in a prepared statement.


The law expands several popular tax credits, including the Quality Jobs program that applies to employers who add jobs with at least average wages and health benefits. The law raises the cap on Quality Jobs tax credits to $80 million from the current $60 million, giving state economic development officials greater flexibility to target businesses.


The New Markets program provides tax credits to equity investments in development projects located in areas with significant poverty rates or low incomes. The BUILD program provides aid for companies to pay off bonds used to build their plants.

Supporters are hopeful the package will encourage expansions by several particular companies, including St. Louis-based seed-maker Monsanto Co. and Lee's Summit-based battery-maker Kokam America Inc.

Lot's of other great stuff in that article as well. One you should click on for more detail. What I like most was the governor of a state is willing to take some bits of risk to help employers in his state create more jobs. Honestly it isn't even all that much of an outlandish idea.

So 'show me' Missouri has made it clear that it is open for business... has Kingman?? If so, show me.

Clearwater plans 118-acre industrial park

Clearwater officials are after the big economic development fish, and the bait on their hook is a 118-acre industrial park on the city's east edge just off 135th Street.

The park --"As close to shovel-ready as you can get," said its Wichita broker, Steve Martens -- got its start as a potential home for small existing and expanding Clearwater businesses.

But Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition officials urged the city about four months ago to extend utilities and build a more versatile industrial park.

"Over the years, we've either had smaller companies or people associated with Clearwater ask for a place to build or start a business, but we haven't had a place for them," said Kent Brown, Clearwater's city manager.

Brown said GWEDC officials intervened, asking the city to "retain some flexibility" in the development for a larger industry.

"They told us the parcel's attractive because of the rail option there," he said. "We're on (Watco) short line railway, and we've already had discussions with them on a rail spur or circle, and both are easily doable for an easy connection to the Union Pacific or Burlington Northern."

I wish I could make this stuff up because in a very strange and warped way, I find most of it extremely hilarious. And yet I also want to cry. (serenity now... serenity now... unicorns and rainbows... okay much better now)

Now for this last article, like I said before -- this is a bit of repeat -- but the quotes and the other information is just too juicy not to share...

New Bridge at Forefront of Economic Development in South Texas

MISSION, Texas, June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- People recognize a good investment when they see one, and those people are investing in the South Texas city of Mission, bringing economic development to the area even when other parts of the country are struggling.

The largest recent investment is the Anzalduas International Bridge, a $168-million joint project between the United States and Mexico. The newest and one of the largest international bridges in the United States will open in October and directly connect Mission with Reynosa, Mexico, a city known for its advanced manufacturing and import/export operations.


As new jobs continue to funnel in, so are the people. The Mission MSA added more than 150,000 residents since the 2000 Census, and with population projected to double by 2025, the real estate market has begun to expand, showing an increase in both sales and median price of existing homes. Mission has also seen new ventures in the luxury condominium sector with the construction of Vantage Luxury Hotel Condos, whose condos are already sold out, with most purchased by wealthy investors from Mexico.

"There is a tremendous demand for quality housing construction here in South Texas because land prices and construction are still reasonably priced. We're selling units much faster than we can build them," said Fernando Rivera Garcia, CEO of Infinity Global Development Group, LLC.

Well, uh... imagine that. An infrastructure project bringing economic development to the area. And to boot, the infrastructure project isn't even completed yet.

Now for some editorializing (maybe a rant)...

The funny thing here is that I'm getting a strong feeling that the Kingman community is gonna let the city leaders get away with practically doing nothing about economic conditions. I hate to say it like that because I like our current leaders in office (and I love the community). I do think they mean well and all, certainly are friendly, and certainly seem concerned... BUT WHAT ARE THEY DOING ABOUT IT??

What's that you say?? This??

In the words of Hall of Fame tennis player John MacEnroe... YOU CAN NOT BE SERIOUS!!

A couple of months back there was sort of a big deal about a new economic development type of commission formed by the City Council. And pretty much a couple of months back was the last time anyone has mentioned it. Probably why I can't remember the exact name for this body and can't be bothered to even try to look it up. Which helps me segue to the next bit.

So maybe I'm way off base here, perhaps the city leaders are doing something about it. Maybe things are in the works and positive efforts are being made to make the sort of changes that are needed to compete with these five communities mentioned above and the almost certain thousands of other communities are actively competing for new and better prospects for opportunities. So if that is indeed the case, and I owe apologies to the city leaders... WELL THEN WHY THE HELL IS THE DAILY HIGH SCHOOL NEWSPAPER NOT REPORTING ON IT??

I mean it has to be one or the other, has to.

Look here, there is this not-so-new-any-longer invention called the Internet now, a resource that will allow the positive efforts for economic development (I'll simply hope and pray are currently underway) to perhaps reach anyone in the world that can log into the thing. And the odds are decent that 'anyone' could actually mean 'someone' that desires to locate a business or even relocate a business in a business friendly environment (the horror, Martha, the horror).

Two things prove my point; 1) I find articles like these above on the Internet from mainly local media outlets doing the reporting and it takes maybe five minutes worth of searching, and 2) all the negative articles that were written about how some often featured by the media locals wanted to end 'explosive' growth or 'irresponsible' growth (or whatever) were most definitely read by the kind of 'someone' I mentioned in the previous paragraph.

And here we are.

Before the regular that pops in here with the 'love or leave it' attitude... a preemptive shot from me comes first. I know plenty of very hard working and totally capable younger folks (thinking working age when I say younger) that live right here in Kingman. All capable of squeezing blood from a stone, thank you, but why should any of these great fellow citizens be subjected to that when other communities are rolling out the red carpet so their citizens don't have to??

Oh I know, I know... tighten belt... hide in shell.

Amazing here in Kingman that some think it is folly to try for the brass ring.

(Fine, rant over)

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