By Steve Barg
Have you ever wondered what the City of Marshfield can do in order to encourage a strong, vibrant local economy? After all, so much of what determines whether businesses locate and expand in a community is outside of a local government’s control.
In 2012 the Marshfield Common Council created the Economic Development Board (EDB) to foster and promote growth in all areas of our local economy—industrial, commercial, and residential. The Board is comprised of seven members, five from the private sector and two Council members, and they are looking at every aspect of what is necessary to establish a positive climate for economic growth.
The traditional model focused on offering vacant land for no cost or at a greatly reduced price and maybe providing cash incentives, but the EDB is working to identify all critical factors that companies consider when making decisions on where to locate and expand.
Is there available work for an employee’s spouse? Are there excellent schools for their children? What about quality community facilities and recreational amenities, like libraries, parks, et cetera? Is there a good selection of housing options for their families?
Answers to these questions are often equally important to securing land and incentives when business leaders make their future plans.
The EDB realizes that much assistance and cooperation are required for this important challenge. The Board works very closely with other economic development organizations, including the Marshfield Area Chamber of Commerce & Industry (MACCI), Marshfield Main Street, Community Development Authority, Downtown Business Improvement District, Convention & Visitors Bureau, and other groups as needed to carry out its mission.
In addition, the EDB recognizes that support and participation from the business community, civic/community groups, and the general public are essential in moving Marshfield forward to become the type of city where people want to live, work, and play.
If you want to give input to the EDB, feel free to attend their meetings, usually held on the first Thursday of the month at 3:00 p.m. in Room 108 of the City Hall Plaza. Agendas are posted on the City’s website, www.ci.marshfield.wi.us.
You can contact Jason Angell, Planning & Economic Development Director, at (715) 486-2074 or Jason.Angell@ci.marshfield.wi.us, or Steve Barg, City Administrator, at (715) 387-6597 or Steve.Barg@ci.marshfield.wi.us with your questions, ideas, and suggestions or to get more information.
We look forward to working with our partners and citizens to build our local economy here in Marshfield in the months and years ahead, and we hope that you will consider joining us in this exciting effort.