Albion earns EDCC recertification through utilities and business expansion projects
MAY 11, 2016 (LINCOLN, NEB.) The City of Albion (Pop. 1,656) has earned recertification as an Economic Development Certified Community (EDCC). Business Recruitment Manager Jason Guernsey and Business Development Consultant Kelly Gewecke, of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED), recognized the community during Albion’s City Council meeting on Tuesday, May 10.
Albion is one of 38 communities to earn EDCC certification in the program, which is sponsored by the Nebraska Diplomats and administered by DED. State officials established the program in 2005 to recognize communities for their preparedness to attract new industries and grow existing businesses. As part of the certification process, qualifying communities must identify a well-defined program that actively engages with their existing business community and offers a supportive environment for welcoming new economic development projects. This includes documenting available sites and buildings, local financing and incentive programs, and a strategic plan for economic development, such as implementing a progressive strategy to grow the community’s labor market. Albion earned original EDCC certification in 2010 and was recertified last month.
“The process of becoming EDCC certified encourages our residents to focus more on community, county and all local economic development planning,” said Mitch Glesinger, of the Boone County Development Agency (BCDA) Administration. “This type of collaboration allows us all to be proactive and prepared for future growth.”
The county’s efforts to expand utility options began in 2011 and resulted in the completion of 200 wind energy turbines at four area wind farms, as well as a $4 million wastewater treatment facility completed in 2013.
Implementation of the wind farms resulted in more than 40 fulltime technical jobs in Boone County.
In May 2014, the community celebrated the completion of a new $1.5 million, 24 room motel and event center. One month later, Albion opened a $3.8 million aquatic center, made possible through the passage of a $2.95 million bond issue and capital funding campaign. Currently, PST Milling is in the process of constructing a $13 million animal feed processing plant.
“Multi-million dollar community projects don’t happen without proactive and persistent leadership,” said Dean Hart, President of the Nebraska Diplomats. “Albion’s additions promote new opportunities for tourism and encourage additional social interaction from local residents. Both play important roles in a community’s success.”
The community continues to move forward on upcoming expansion projects. Boone Central Schools and the Good Samaritan Society are both planning extensive expansions and additions totaling more than $16 million.
“Members of the Albion Economic Development Corporation (AEDC) are pleased with the number of entrepreneurs and current business owners in the community who continue to invest in Albion, through startup businesses and the expansion of current operations,” said AEDC President Jeff Jarecki. “This continued development makes our thriving community an even better place to live and work.”
Over the past five years, the City of Albion, AEDC and BCDA have been instrumental in supporting the growth of the community through the creation of 18 new community businesses resulting in 61 new jobs, as well as 10 new jobs created by 11 existing business expansion projects.
“The City of Albion is proud to receive the Economic Development Certified Community Recertification,” said Doug Koch, Executive Director of the BCDA. “Through collaborative efforts between our agency, AEDC and the City of Albion, this certification shows our commitment to growing this community. As we continue to implement our economic development strategic and marketing plans, we are working towards an exciting future for the City of Albion.”
Contact Lynn Kohout at 402-440-2559, or email@example.com, or visit http://www.neded.org/economic-development-certified-community for additional information on the Economic Development Certified Community Program.