JACKSON COUNTY ECONOMIC ALLIANCE CELEBRATES ITS PARTNERS
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(Maquoketa, IA) – The Jackson County Economic Alliance (JCEA) held its fifth Annual Investor & Partner Appreciation Event on Tuesday, February 18, 2020. The reception was hosted by the Maquoketa Art Experience and sponsored by River Ridge Brewing, Moore Family Farms, Blue-9 Pet Products, Tri-M BBQ and Simply Parker’s. There were approximately 70 attendees including Board members, investors, and other partnering organizations.
Director, Nic Hockenberry, Senior Advisor, Dave Heiar, and Economic Development Specialist, Stephanie Sagers, provided an overview of the JCEA’s efforts over the last year. Hockenberry began by highlighting the JCEA’s focus on business and industry development. He noted that the office assisted with five local start-ups and business expansions that created or retained 59 jobs. Based on building permits for 2019, there were commercial investments totaling over $27.6 million.
Sagers described that the JCEA focuses on workforce development because of its importance to the continued success of our local business and industry. Partners like Iowa Workforce Development, IowaWorks, Clinton Community College, and the local school systems are all integral partners in this work. Sagers highlighted last year’s career and hiring fair and manufacturing month as initiatives that raised the profile of the opportunities available for fulfilling careers here in Jackson County.
Heiar described their community development efforts as “an important tool for the successful recruitment and retention of a skilled workforce, and a robust workforce is necessary for the success of our businesses and industries.” Efforts to this end that were highlighted related to housing, downtown revitalization, and leadership development initiatives. Heiar also highlighted that over the past 5 years the JCEA has been involved in securing over $10.5 million in grant funding for various projects.
At the conclusion of the 2019 overview, Hockenberry stated “the success of the Alliance depends on private/public partnerships. I can’t thank our investors enough for their investment in the future of our county. Economic Development is all about collaboration and partnerships. We have made great strides in the past year and I am excited for the future.”