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AEDC first quarter report

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Article By: The Daily Iowegian

Tod Faris, Appanoose Economic Development Corporation executive director, issued this report for the first quarter of 2014.

Governor’s Deer Hunt: The hunt was Jan. 3-5, based at Honey Creek Resort. We hosted about 20 hunters (primarily site selectors and business owners from out of state) and about 15 representatives from IEDA and the governor’s office. Several local businesses helped to make the hunt a success. Doug Hurley also did an outstanding job organizing all land owners, hunting guides and hunters to make the hunting experience positive. Kathy Anderson of the Iowa Economic Development Authority was impressed with Centerville and our ability to host this high profile event professionally and without any challenges or surprises. Great relationships were created among locals and the site selectors (and other guests) as well as with Donald Trump, Jr. These relationships will serve us well over time. This event will be hosted in Appanoose County again next year.

AEDC Banquet: The banquet was a great success as we had 188 reservations (a record attendance by 20). John Glenn, CEO of Rathbun Regional Water Association was the featured speaker and described the current water distribution area of RRWA and future capacity. The following were the very deserving award winners: Jon and Robin Schmidt – Investing in Appanoose County, Mike O’Connor – Service to Appanoose County and Royal Simmons – The Cline Medal.

Strategic Plan: The AEDC Board is considering hiring Webster Global Site Selectors to work with AEDC to create a new strategic implementation plan. This would be a comprehensive action plan with a focus on best practices in business attraction. This process would also utilize the expertise of site selectors from Phoenix and Louisville.

RLF/IRP Loan Program: The Review Committee has approved loans totaling $267,500 so far in 2014. We still need to lend at least $165,000 by June 2014, so we are still looking for qualified Appanoose County businesses that are looking to expand, purchase equipment, etc.

Walmart Building Marketing: Faris continues to visit with potential business owners to move their facilities to Centerville and purchase or lease the Walmart building. Walmart at the corporate level is considering putting the building up for auction.

Chariton Valley Regional Housing Trust Fund: The new home on South 15th Street is nearly complete and the Board is trying to sell it ASAP. This three bedroom, two bath home, with two car attached garage has been built by the IHCC Buildings and Trades students. It is for sale for $100,000. Contact the AEDC office or Hometown Realty if interested.

New Websites: AEDC, the city of Centerville and Appanoose County partnered to hire the Golden Shovel Agency to create new websites for all three organizations. The new AEDC website was launched and the other two will be completed and launched soon.

Site Selector Visit: Kelly Armstrong of Webster Global Site Selectors toured Centerville to learn more about the area to help bring industries here. Webster Global is based in Phoenix, Ariz., but Kelly is from Louisville, Ky.

Gov. Branstad Visit: The governor and Lt. governor toured Curwood in March. We discussed the Governor’s Deer Hunt and many other topics. The staff at Curwood did a great job hosting this visit.

Professional Developers of Iowa: The PDI Fall Conference will be held at Honey Creek Resort this September with AEDC as the host. There will be about 170 participants here for three days. Entertainment includes meals on the Square and a dinner cruise on Rathbun Lake.

Leadership Iowa: Faris has been participating in the Leadership Iowa class of 2013-2014 and has traveled to Des Moines, Cedar Falls, Marshalltown and Ottumwa. They will travel to Sioux City and Cedar Rapids to complete the experience in June. In each of these locations, they meet with city, state and business leaders to learn about each of these communities and other statewide issues and subjects. We also have toured a vast variety of manufacturing and other business facilities. Next year’s LI class will start at Honey Creek Resort in October 2014, which Faris will have a hand in planning.

Manufacturing Visits: Faris and the AEDC Board have been conducting annual interviews with the plant managers or owners of local manufacturing facilities. Three of the first six manufactures had increased employment a total of 90 employees since last year. There are still a few more to complete by the end of April.

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