Analysis under way to support Grand Valley economic recovery

Robin Brown
Tim Foster, President
Colorado Mesa University

An analysis is under way to assess the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on the Grand Valley economy.

The Grand Junction Economic Partnership has joined with Colorado Mesa University to conduct the analysis, the first phase of which involves a survey of about 500 businesses across industry sectors in Mesa County.

Nathan Perry, an economics professor at CMU, and the GJEP staff developed the 30-question survey. GJEP staff will conduct telephone calls and collect survey responses electronically. Initial survey results should be ready in July.

Robin Brown, executive director of GJEP, said the results of the analysis will support economic recovery. “Mesa County has maintained low numbers of COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic. Thanks to the proactive efforts of Mesa County Public Health and our local governments, we can safely begin the economic recovery process in the Grand Valley. In order to best support our business community, we first need to better understand the unique circumstances of each industry.”

CMU President Tim Foster said the analysis constitutes another example of collaboration with GJEP. “From the CMU Student Showcase and Entrepreneurship Day to economic development and economic research, the partnership between GJEP and the CMU remains strong and continues serving the best interests of the community and students,” Foster said. “The analysis and research produced by the CMU Department of Business in conjunction with GJEP continues to enrich our community during times of prosperity and in times of challenge.”

The analysis will help economic development partners and local municipalities determine how to allocate resources to support recovery as well as develop of timeline of when the economy will return to pre-pandemic levels.

The GJEP database of local businesses; membership directories of chambers of commerce in Fruita, Grand Junction and Palisade; and ResearchUSA were used to create a list of companies that represent the spectrum of industries in Mesa County. GJEP will combine survey results with the findings of a survey recently conducted by Visit Grand Junction of the hospitality, leisure and tourism industries.