To pose a question from the lyrics of a popular 1980s movie theme song: “Who you gonna call?” When it comes to enlisting assistance in keeping their operations running in Mesa County, small business owners and managers actually have a lot of choices among members of a coalition of organizations and entities promoting economic development.
They could call the Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce, Grand Junction Economic Partnership or Business Incubator Center. Alternatively, they could call the Mesa County Workforce Center or even the local city or county governments. It’s far less important which member of the Economic Development Partners a business calls for help than the call is made in the first place.
Consider the example of Keith Ehlers, an engineer and business manager with SimGenics, a Grand Junction company that provides computer simulations and training for the power generation industry. When SimGenics entered into a strategic partnership with a South Africa company, consideration was given to relocating SimGenics operations to Denver or Salt Lake City.
Ehlers decided to make a case to stay in Grand Junction and asked for help from the ED Partners to do so. He quickly received numbers on office leasing rates, air fares and the local labor market to successful demonstrate Grand Junction remains a good location for SimGenics.
In addition to helping keep businesses in Mesa County that are considering relocation, other resources are available from the ED Partners to assist businesses faced with employment or zoning issues or those simply struggling to remain open.
While attracting new businesses to Mesa County constitutes a crucial component of economic development, so does keeping existing businesses in operation. Consequently, supporting the growth of existing businesses rightly ranks among the major goals of an economic development plan for the county.
Unfortunately, some business owners and managers remain unaware of the range of resources available to them until it’s too late to reconsider a decision to move elsewhere or close their doors.
Who you gonna call? For those businesses that could use some help, the answer is the ED Partners.