MCEDC Community Leaders Discuss Development OpportunitiesOn February 20th, the Marshall County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) held a “County Development for the Future” event at the Swan Lake Resort & Conference Center. This purpose of this event, which was attended by 30 participants representing the County Commissioners, Town and City Councils, Redevelopment Commissions, and other community groups, was to discuss future business and industrial development opportunities throughout the county.
The event was presented as a follow up to the successful “Economic Development 101 for Local Elected Officials” held last fall. It was at this prior event that many of our local elected leaders and representatives learned of how economic development is a team sport which cannot be done by any one individual, county, city, or town. In this cooperative spirit, the participants at Wednesday’s event discussed potential development constraints and opportunities, and what needs to be done to move our communities forward to attract companies to our county.
The event was facilitated by Shawn Peterson, CEO & President of the Corporate Partnership for Economic Growth. Mr. Peterson’s former position with the Indiana Economic Development Corporation allowed him to share insight into the interactions the state and economic development organizations, such as MCEDC, have with site selectors.
”Generally site and building requests come in with a requirement for a 48 hour turn-around. If the information is not readily available, a community will not make the cut,” said Mr. Peterson. He continued that next to an available building or site, the next key factor is an available and educated workforce.
While the root causes varied for our lack of available buildings and sites, there was a consensus that we need to streamline our processes and work towards having buildings and properties ready for immediate sale. At the conclusion of the event, the group decided to reconvene to continue to the discussion.