PCDI Developing Balanced 2012 Budget

Whitestone Complex off North Main in Lamar

The 2012 Prowers County Development Incorporated budget needs trimming, about $23,000 to be balanced for the approaching year.  Board members believe $15,000 could be eliminated by taking that Community Partnership line item out of the budget, and the balance could be trimmed from various remaining expenditures.  Community Partnerships brought in only $725 so far this year.  The bulk of operating funds comes from the City of Lamar and Prowers County, each contributing $50,000 a year.  In past years, PCDI generated additional funds from an annual golf tournament and on two occasions, a community auction. 

Board members shared their concerns about the growing lack of rural representation for economic development.  The staffing and administration changes at the state Office of Economic Development and International Trade have reduced the number of regional representatives for eastern Colorado, and southeast Colorado has lost its direct representative, Darlene Scott,  when her position was eliminated.  Holly Town Administrator and PCDI Board member, Marsha Willhite suggested that the director of OEDIT, Ken Lund, be asked just how he believes these changes will benefit economic growth in our region.  One idea expressed was to invite Lund to discuss these issues with county, city and other concerned parties.  Board members also agreed to begin quarterly workshops to generate ideas and communication in an informal setting, which would be open to the public as well.   A tentative meeting has been set for Holly, sometime in March.  The meetings would be rotated at other sites throughout the county through the year. 

PCDI executive director Lisa Nolder was not in attendance at Tuesday’s meeting, but her monthly report discussed the recent sale of the Ogier property south of Lamar.  The purchase includes the White Stone Feed Mill just east of North Main Street in Lamar.  It’s expected that 15 new jobs will be created when the facility is operating at full capacity.  The property has been off the tax base for the past two years, so additional income will be generated through property tax revenue.

By Russ Baldwin


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