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Economic Development and Developers in the News #89

Econ dev news from 64 economic development executives and organizations in 19 states.

Dane Carlson
Dane Carlson
5 min read
Economic Development and Developers in the News #89
Photo by Denis LORAIN / Unsplash

Table of Contents

Good morning and welcome to the 89th weekly edition of Economic Development and Developers in the News.

Today's issue contains news from 64 economic development executives and organizations in 19 states.

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If this is your first time reading: Welcome!

The Econ Dev Show is a podcast and weekday email newsletter of actionable strategies, fresh news, insights, and ideas from the economic development community and your host, Dane Carlson.


The Pima County Board of Supervisors Dec. 6 unanimously approved a lease-purchase agreement with American Battery Factory to build a $1 billion battery manufacturing facility. The company expects to employ more than 1,000 people once the facility is fully constructed and operating. (Heath Vescovi-Chiordi, Economic Development Director)


Anne Price, president of the racial-justice group Insight Center for Community and Economic Development, left her job last week. Although Price has boosted fundraising and just won a prestigious honor, she says the board repeatedly refused to raise her salary, has governed the group poorly, and has underpaid her and treated her badly because she is a woman and because she is Black. So she resigned.


The Pasco County Commission approved up to $958,206 in economic development incentives for Gary Plastic Packaging Corp. to move part of its operation from Bronx, New York, to Pasco County. (Economic Growth Manager David Engel)


Albany Dougherty EDC has released their economic development plan. Some bullet points in the plan include things such as identifying target markets and industries, building in existing relationships with businesses and establishing the Economic Development Commission’s role in retail development. (Economic Development Commission CEO Jana Dyke)


The city of LaSalle could get a new economic development and tourism website. The city approved applying for a $20,000 Illinois Travel and Tourism grant to create it last week. (Economic Development Director Curt Bedei)


Aimed at closing geographic and racial gaps in economic opportunity, the Brookings Institution’s Bass Center for Transformative Placemaking and the Local Initiatives Support Corp. will work with three Indiana cities — Seymour, Michigan City and Warsaw — over the next year to co-create community-centered economic inclusion programs. The effort is supported by Indiana Economic Development Corp. and is focused on small cities located in Indiana’s READI program regions. The lead convening organizations representing each Indiana town in the cohort are: Jackson County Industrial Development Corp. (Seymour), Economic Development Corp. of Michigan City and Kosciusko Economic Development Corp. (Warsaw). (Jim Plump, executive director of JCID.; Jennifer Vey, senior fellow and director of Brookings’ Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Center for Transformative Placemaking; Bill Taft, senior vice president of economic development for LISC)

The fact that 1.9 million employed Hoosiers lack some type of credential or college degree isn’t a reason for despair. Instead, they see opportunities abound to help increase workers’ mobility, skills and financial standing across Indiana through education. More than 100 leaders from Purdue Global, Ivy Tech Community College, and state and local workforce and economic development groups came together in November to celebrate and expand those opportunities. (Kevin Brinegar, president and CEO of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce; Tony Denhart, executive vice president of workforce and talent at the Indiana Economic Development Corporation.)

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has announced a partnership with the Applied Research Institute to jointly develop strategies to attract new businesses and support existing work, especially in the national security and defense sectors. In support of the effort, current IEDC Executive Vice President of entrepreneurship and innovation Dave Roberts will transition into a new role as CEO of ARI. (Indiana Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers)


The Iowa Economic Development Authority and Iowa Finance Authority Executive Director Debi Durham joined officials from the City of Cedar Falls to celebrate the site certification of the West Viking Road Industrial Park.


Officials with Kentucky Power announced on Tuesday they are awarding $30,000 to Lawrence County. The grant is funded through the Kentucky Power Economic Growth Grant program. County leaders will use the money to contract a consultant agency to help viable sites for development and potential industrial property.“ Grant applications are reviewed by a committee comprised of employees and delegates of the Kentucky Association of Economic Development and the Kentucky Economic Development Cabinet (Amanda Clark, Kentucky Power external affairs manager)

Kentucky state and local leaders celebrated construction progress at the largest economic development project in Kentucky history  where a pair of manufacturing plants will produce batteries for Ford and Lincoln vehicles. Although construction had already begun on what was once 1,500 acres of farmland, ground was officially broken on the BlueOval SK Battery Park in Glendale.


Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker signed a home-rule petition for the City of Framingham that establishes an Economic Development Corporation. The new EDC would eliminate the Framingham Economic Development & Industrial Corporation, which last met in June 2022, and has not filed minutes since March 2022.

The city of Worcester and several organizations working in the city have received more than $4.2 million in grant funding for economic development and urban revitalization projects, the state announced.


The Greater Muskegon Economic Development group is the winner of the “Large Ecomonic Impact Deal of the Year” award from the Mid-America Economic Development Council. (Marla Schneider, President & CEO, GMED; Morgan Carroll, Director of Business Development, GMED)

Black Wallstreet Grand Rapids announced its development team. (Preston Sain, Co-founder and President, Black Wallstreet Grand Rapids; Jeremiah Gracia, Director, Grand Rapids Economic Development)


Jeff Meredith is the first CEO of the Carthage Economic Development Corporation. Meredith comes to Carthage after working for the Monett and Carthage Chambers.


The state has awarded $400,000 in economic recovery funds to Omaha Development Foundation. The funds will be used for planning Omaha’s airport business park.

New York

The current economic conditions in Orange County are bright with an extremely positive outlook in the future. (Maureen Halahan, President & CEO, Orange County Partnership)

Empire State Development announced the grand opening of the new global headquarters for RBW, a lighting design and manufacturing company, in the town of Ulster. RBW has acquired a new 100,000 square foot facility and will invest over $5.4 million for acquisition, construction and renovation and the purchase of machinery and equipment for their operations. Empire State Development has awarded RBW up to $547,500 in Excelsior Jobs Tax Credits in exchange for the retention of 35 and the creation of 49 new, local jobs. (Hope Knight, President, CEO & Commissioner, Empire State Development)

North Carolina

Sumitomo Forestry America, Inc., a comprehensive housing and wood products company will invest $19.5 million and create 129 jobs in Randolph County. (Machelle Baker Sanders, Commerce Secretary; Scott T. Hamilton, President & CEO, GoldenLEAF Foundation; Carl Warren, President & CEO, North Carolina Railroad Company; Kevin Franklin, President, Randolph County EDC)


In Central Ohio, every $1 spent on a park system can lead to a private investment between $7 and $20. (Dr. Amy Acton, President & CEO, Rapid 5)

The Bowling Green Economic Development director will become a city employee in the new year. (Kati Thompson, Director, Bowling Green Economic Development)

Ravenna City Council voted to renew Dennis West's contract as economic development director.

Monroe County officials heard an update on economic development in the county over the past year, as well as plans for the future. (Jason Hamman, Economic Development Representative, Monroe County)

South Carolina

The Chester County Council approved a resolution that committed the county to enter into a fee agreement with Project Raven. Project Raven is expected to include an investment of at least $1.2 billion and the creation of 307 new, full-time jobs. (Robert Long, Director Economic Development, Chester County)

Envision AESC will build an $810 million electric vehicle battery manufacturing plant in Florence that will create 1,170 jobs. (Gregg Robinson, CEO, Florence County Economic Development Partnership)


The Longview business parks are running out of land. And with limited space available the Longview Economic Development Corporation will face a challenge attracting more big business and manufacturing to the city. (Wayne Mansfield, CEO, LEDCO)


The Industrial Development Authority of Danville has given final approval to the documents necessary to move forward with the restoration and rehabilitation of the former White Mill building. (Corrie Bobe, Director of the Office of Economic Development, City of Danville)

In the NewsNewsletter

Dane Carlson Twitter

Founder/Host of Econ Dev Show. Also: Sitehunt CEO and economic development consultant in Greater Houston, Texas.

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