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These are just a few of the ways in which economic development helps communities:
•§ Increased Tax Base...the additional revenue provided by economic development supports, maintains, and improves local infrastructure, such as roads, parks, libraries, and emergency medical services.•§ Job Development...economic development provides better wages, benefits, and opportunities for advancement.•§ Business Retention...businesses feel appreciated by the community and, in turn, are more likely to stay in town, contributing to the economy.•§ Economic Diversification...a diversified economic base helps expand the local economy and reduces a community's vulnerability to a single business sector.•§ Self-sufficiency...a stronger economic base means public services are less dependent on intergovernmental influences and alliances, which can change with each election.•§ Productive Use of Property...property used for its "highest and best use" maximizes the value of that property.•§ Quality of Life...more local tax dollars and jobs raise the economic tide for the entire community, including the overall standard of living of the residents.•§ Recognition of Local Products...successful economic development often occurs when locally produced goods are consumed in the local market to a greater degree.
Economic developers are also instrumental in helping to leverage finances from both the public and private sectors--funding that is critical to help communities attract new businesses, facilitate enterprise development, and assist existing business with expansion and troubleshooting.