Here are some commonly asked questions relating to Meeker County EDA
What actually is economic development?
Economic Development is improving the economic and social well being of people through efforts entailing job creation and retention, tax base enhancements and the quality of life. It’s essentially preserving, growing and building on our local economy. No single definition incorporates all of the different strands of economic development, there is no single strategy, policy or program for achieving a successful economic development.
What is Meeker County’s economic development strategy?
- Help take care of our existing business base
- Help maintain strong downtowns (by helping create redevelopment plans in each community, Meeker County EDA will help coordinate)
- Be ready for opportunities when they present themselves – i.e. have readily available what companies are looking for ie. Industrial park space, building space, project financing, trained workforce, and so forth. Work with each city to make this a reality. Get them to be web, development, and shovel ready for opportunities of the future.
- Exploit technology – maximize use of the internet for marketing, payments, and a one stop shop for all of Meeker County.
- Reinforce success – take advantage of the fact that we have a sustainable manufacturing base in Meeker and surrounding counties with a highly skilled labor force.
- In all our communities be proactive & progressive.
- Capitalize on emerging business areas
- Emphasize our strengths, fix our weaknesses if possible
What does Meeker County EDA do?
- Business Loans & Planning
- Business Site Assistance and Consulting
- Business Retention & Expansion – help take care of our existing businesses in the county
- Work with Housing Developers
- Grant Writing
- Promote & facilitate Downtown Redevelopment
- Coordinate and standardize economic development throughout the county.
- Redevelopment projects
- Marketing the County and working with all our communities
- Manage and administer the Meeker County Revolving Loan Funds (gap financing)
Can I get free money?
No – Meeker County EDA does not have any free money available. We do GAP financing.
How is the EDA organized?
The EDA is governed by a 9-member Board of Directors that is appointed by the County Commissioners. The Board of Directors is made up of two commissioners and seven people to represent each community throughout Meeker County. The EDA is considered an authority under the MN Statute within the context of the County, but is a separate legal entity. Meeker County employees are not employees of the County.
What do you do for existing businesses?
We help find financial assistance programs suitable for the business, we offer GAP financing available through our Revolving and Intermediary Loan Funds and provide technical assistance. Our top priority is taking care of our business community.
What is the difference between the Chamber of Commerce and Meeker County EDA?
The Chamber helps provide services (such as seminars, networking & marketing) to our existing business community as well as marketing the community and promoting tourism in our area. The Litchfield Area Chamber works with the cities in Meeker County and the Meeker County EDA to help promote a better economic climate for startup and existing businesses. Meeker County EDA works with all the county’s chambers and business organizations. The EDA is much more project oriented – focusing on growing the counties overall economy.
How is Meeker County EDA funded?
The EDA is funded through allocations from Meeker Co.
What are the Meeker County Goals?
- Supporting Communities
- Growing new and existing businesses
- Housing Development
- Workforce Development
What does Meeker County offer?
- We are in proximity to Ridgewater Colleges in Hutchison and Willmar
- Outstanding skilled workforce
- Existing business base and supply chains
- We are in close proximity to the Twin Cities, Willmar, and St. Cloud.
- We have an outstanding parks system
- Progressive communities