Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Economic group sets 2012 goals

Culinary institute, Olympic designation top list

Express Staff Writer

Sustain Blaine economic development group announced its goals for 2012 during a board meeting Monday, with some members calling the action plan ambitious but valuable.

"How are we supposed to do all of this in one year?" asked County Commissioner and board member Tom Bowman with a laugh.

Continuing more seriously, he added "I'm just concerned we're describing more [ongoing] programs than projects we can finalize."

The plan divides goals into projects that will be completed this year and ongoing programs the group oversees.

Executive Director Harry Griffith said the group plans four projects this year.

They include obtaining Sun Valley's designation as an Olympic Nordic training site, developing a culinary institute in cooperation with College of Southern Idaho, educating the community on the economic impacts of the airport and developing a community profile to distribute to businesses and individuals looking to relocate here.

"I think everything up there is doable," Griffith said during Monday's meeting. "This is an extension of last year—it's not a paradigm shift."

Ongoing programs include conducting surveys on how to keep businesses in the valley, seeking out businesses that may be interested in relocating to the area and working with cities to streamline licensing and development processes.

Katherine Wutz:

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