Tuesday, February 19, 2013
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Logan County Board to support 2013 regional CEDS

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[February 19, 2013]  On Wednesday, the Logan County Board is expected to pass a resolution of support for its Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy. This particular measure launches Logan County's participation with the Economic Development Council for Central Illinois through its regional CEDS district for the year 2013.

Logan joined the Mason, Peoria, Woodford and Tazewell economic development through its CEDS for what is now a five-county region. The Logan County CEDS was given federal approval last October.

The Lincoln & Logan County Development Partnership led the extensive development and application processes of the CEDS, which received federal approval last October. The partnership will continue to manage this.

Brian Bergen, executive director for the development partnership, was on hand at the county's board-of-whole meeting Thursday evening to answer any questions.

Gene Rohlfs wanted to know just what the costs would be, particularly over a five-year period. He said the amounts previously stated had varied.

Bergen said that this year the annual application fee would be $6,200. The fee varies per county and is determined per capita.

He went on to explain that this year the district would also be working with a consultant, Vital Economy. Part of the consultant's work involves doing a mapping. There had been no comprehensive mapping done previously for any of the counties that are already in that district.

"I think that the work that Vital Economy can do as a consultant, coming into the county, looking for the assets that we have, adding it into the CEDS, is a great thing," Bergen said.

That project would be a separate and added cost to the participating counties. However, "the partnership would work with that," he said.

"I'm not coming back for CEDS money this year. Whatever the extra fee that is beyond what you are already paying, we're going to work that out. We'll try to go through private donations," Bergen said.

"What you're paying is enough. We'll go from there and work it out ourselves."

Bergen shared his excitement that there is already a project identified that he thinks could be approved quickly, which would bring a return on the funds and the effort for the CEDS.

"One of the projects that is already in the CEDS that we're already looking at is the Fifth Street Road project. Asking for $2.5 million for that project is not a hard ask," he said. "It's an exact project that would fit EDA immediately. It's something that we could immediately ask for and apply for."

Fifth Street Road has been a top infrastructure priority for both the city of Lincoln and for the county for a number of years. The road's redevelopment opens the gateway for further industrial or business development to the west of Lincoln, and the county portion would go as far at the Middletown Blacktop.

The urban stretch of Fifth Street Road, from Lincoln Parkway to Interstate 55, is set in the city's five-year plan for fiscal 2016. It includes a bike trail and carries a price tag of $6,242,500.

If federal funds were received for the project, "this would bring right back into the county money already invested into regional organization," Bergen pointed out.

But, according to Bergen, the regional participation brings more to our table.

"The regional organization is not all about asking for money," he said. "We're working on workforce issues. How do we work together as a five-county unit to develop a better workforce? Educational issues are at the top of it."

As a participant, the city of Lincoln would also need to sign the same resolution to make the annual commitment to the CEDS regional district.

Bergen also announced the representatives who would take Logan County's interests to the regional CED's table. He said the individuals were selected in accordance with a list of criteria provided by the regional Economic Development Administration. They are Lincoln College President John Blackburn, who would provide a good three-way cross section of business, economic development and higher education; Andi Hake from the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce; as well as himself.


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Lincoln-Logan County Comprehensive Economic Development Plan

Lincoln & Logan County Development Partnership, NFP
Executive Director Brian Bergen
1555 Fifth St.
Lincoln, IL 62656


Email: Brian@lincolnlogan.com

Website: http://3rdwire.net/LLDP/ 

Past articles related to CEDS

Past articles related to Fifth Street Road

Related websites

To read the current CEDS document for the Economic Development Council for Central Illinois, click here (PDF).

Here are a couple of excerpts from the opening information on the Economic Development Council for Central Illinois CEDS:  

The 2012-2017 CEDS Draft for Public Comment was released in September 2012, one month before Logan County was approved. Logan County is referenced as a potential participant with its information added separately.

"Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) is the result of a planning process designed to enhance the economic growth of the Central Illinois Region. The Central Illinois Economic Development District (EDD) consists of Mason, Peoria, Tazewell and Woodford Counties. The purpose of the CEDS is to establish a process that will help create jobs, foster more stable and diversified economies, and improve living conditions. It provides a mechanism for coordinating the efforts of individuals, organizations, local governments and private industry concerned with economic development. ...

"EDDs, such as Central Illinois, play a key role in local economic development. Instead of having to respond to individual requests from over 2,000 eligible county economic development organizations around the nation, EDDs assist the EDA in establishing regional priorities for projects and investments. These multicounty or other regional planning organizations are governed by boards comprised of local elected officials and private sector representatives from cities, towns and counties."

What is CEDS and what went into the Logan County CEDS?

CEDS is defined by the Economic Development Council for Central Illinois as "the result of a local planning process designed to guide the economic growth of an area."

"A CEDS process will help create jobs, foster more stable and diversified economies and improve living conditions. It provides a mechanism for coordinating the efforts of individuals, organizations, local governments and private industry concerned with economic development. In order for projects to qualify for Economic Development Administration assistance under its public works, economic adjustment and most planning programs, the project must be consistent with the goals and objectives set out in the CEDS."

Logan County Regional Planning Commission FAQ sheet
(Explains interrelatedness of the comprehensive plan, GIS, CEDS and Greenways Plan)

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