Maureen Elbert, Executive Director for Kossuth/Palo Alto County Economic Development Corporation, was honored at the Business Retention and Expansion (BRE) Conference held in Des Moines on May 3. The Professional Developers of Iowa presented Elbert with an award for the development of an Existing Industry Report/Economic Analysis in the Single Business Retention and Expansion Success category.
The Existing Industry Report highlights information about Kossuth and Palo Alto Counties, such as business expansions, workforce availability, workforce quality, and provides a business economic impact analysis showing the value companies have on the local economy.
The generation of this report was truly a collaborative effort. Partners in the project included the economic development corporation, the University of Northern Iowa Institute for Decision Making and the area's CEO Steering Committee which is made up of CEOs and individuals in leadership roles in both counties.
Utilizing information from 192 company visits with major employers to complement data collected from the local schools, the hospital and Wild Rose Casino, the team was able to generate the economic impact report with the IMPLAN software model.
The report is used to:
Identify growth in local companies
Forecast economic investment
Generate facts to support business attraction marketing initiatives
Provide accurate and up-to-date information for prospects, utility partners, state and county officials, and area businesses that request data.
Not only has this report assisted the community in working with its local businesses, but it has become a marketing tool used to target specific industries nationwide and demonstrate why Kossuth and Palo Alto counties would be a perfect fit for their business.