Posted 12/08/15 (Tue)
By Kevin Killough
The Tioga Economic Development Corporation has voted to hire a contractor to do economic development in town.
The fee for services from Dennis Lindahl, owner of Dakota Public Relations, is still being negotiated. At a joint meeting between the EDC and Chamber of Commerce last month, Lindahl quoted a fee of $48,000 for the first year.
Chris Norgaard, president of the EDC, said the contract fee would be paid for with economic development funds from the Tioga Fund.
The EDC still needs to submit an application for the funding and get it approved by the Tioga Fund Board and the Tioga City Commission. Norgaard said he doesn’t think that will be a problem, but “it’s not guaranteed at this point.”
If the application is approved, Lindahl said his first step will be to complete the work on the Renaissance Zone, which was started by the city’s former economic development director.
The city decided to cut the economic development department from the 2016 budget and move the full-time director position into a part-time position within the auditor’s department.
The position remains vacant.
Lindahl said the zone proposal must be presented to the Tioga School Board, as well as the Williams County Commission before it can be officially established.
There’s some other administrative work involved to bring it to fruition, also.
Lindahl said Stanley set up a Renaissance Zone of its own, which incentivized three businesses to renovate their properties, because they received tax abatements.
“It will give businesses incentives to invest in their property,” he said.
Beyond that, Lindahl said he’d be taking direction from the EDC on what initiatives to undertake and execute.
“My task is to help them successfully strategize,” he said.