City challenged to establish an economic identity

By Shawn Roney/For The Richmond News

If Richmond wants to grow economically, it must establish a business identity.

That was a message Troy Nash delivered to an audience of about 25 people Tuesday at City Hall during a special session for city officials and the public on incentives for inducing economic growth. Nash represented Newmark Grubb Zimmer, the company under contract to Richmond to help the city pursue economic development opportunities and objectives.

One service Newmark Grubb Zimmer is providing is to help Richmond develop “an economic development framework,” so the town can draw businesses, according to Nash. Local government policy is vital to that framework, he argued. And economic identity ties in with local policy, Nash suggested through some rhetorical questions.

“Are we going to be a bedroom community for Ford Motor Co.? Is that really what we want?” he asked. “Or do we want to be known as the ‘Mushroom Capital of the World?’ … Or do we want to be the light industrial manufacturer of small automotive parts and we’re going to find ‘X’ amount of acres of land and partner with the private (sector)?… (Ask yourselves) what do you want to be – and then, make that decision and then tailor and/or craft (your public policy to fit that).”

The complete story is in the Thursday, May 28, 2015 Richmond News.

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