Delta County Economic Development (DCED) is working to consolidate its refocused mission on support of existing local business, members and guests were told at the organization's April 12 annual meeting.
In addition to providing administrative support for grants and studies on new products and energy efficiency at Delta Timber, DCED has taken on a grant management initiative for local agriculture.
DCED has formed a partnership with Montrose Economic Development Corporation to administer a federal grant of up to $1.3 million. The money is being made available to area farmers to employ and gather data on new on-farm production practices that it is hoped will decrease selenium loading in irrigation runoff.
DCED vice president Tom Huerkamp told last week's gathering that nine area producers, two of them in Delta County, have signed up for the program that has made $385,000 per year available for three consecutive years.
DCED's ag initiative and its partnership with Delta Timber are examples of the former DADI's emphasis on service to existing business. The organization had originally been formed to attract new, high-paying business and industry to this area. That effort over a number years has been judged a failure, Huerkamp told attendees at the organization's 16th annual meeting.
Since the current economic downturn took hold locally, DCED has cut its budget, expenses and staff. The organization has built cash reserves and utilized unpaid directors to help manage its programs and activities, Huerkamp said.
DCED lists over 80 contributing members from both the public and private sector on its membership roster. They contribute the $101,070 that comprises DCED's 2012 budget: 59 percent of that budget comes from public tax-supported governments and districts, while 41 percent of the budget comes from private business.
Brad Harding, DCED board president, introduced new board members Lucinda Stanley of Cedaredge, John Mitchell of DCMH, and John Harold of Olathe. They join continuing members Scott Thomasson and Ed Marston, and current members Matt Brezonick, Bruce Hovde, Phil Schmidt and Mary Cooper.blog comments powered by Disqus