Tod Faris, Appanoose Economic Development Corporation executive director, issued the following report detailing his activities in June of this year.
Business Communications (as of 7/8/13):
Shark Fin Shears: Moved equipment etc. to Centerville from New Jersey June 28; and are open for business in Centerville. The primary jobs have been filed (eight initially), and plan to hire 15 total over the next three years. They are already shipping products for Shark Fin Shears and Extreme Hunting Solutions from Centerville location.
Hydra Pools: It is pool season so they’re incredibly busy. They were working 12 hour days, seven days/week in three shifts, but due to the cool, wet weather, they have gone back to two shifts. Plan to double the size of the liner shop this fall by adding onto the building to the south. They currently have 20 employees (eight are in the liner shop).
Business Open House at Former Walmart Building: On Tuesday, July 23 from 4 to 6 p.m. there will be an open house at the former Walmart on Highway 5 North. This is an opportunity to learn more about potential business uses for this highly visible commercial space. Options for dividing the building up into two-four smaller units for businesses to lease will be discussed. These businesses can include manufacturing, assembly, and retail, among other things. Mark your calendar and spread the word.
Revolving Loan Fund: The RLF Loan Review Committee approved and closed a new RLF loan with an Appanoose County business. This brings the total to 29 loans to Appanoose County businesses totaling $529,750 in nearly six years. These loans have created 96 new jobs and retained an additional 105 jobs. These loans have also leveraged an additional $3,777,855 in capital improvements and funding from those businesses. 13 of the 29 loans have been paid in full and the others are being paid down monthly. AEDC has funds available to be lent to Appanoose County businesses.
Governor’s Hunt: Gov. Terry Branstad has chosen to have his annual deer hunt based at Honey Creek Resort Jan. 3-5, 2014. The participants invited by the governor will be CEOs considering Iowa for relocation or large expansions and site selectors. This is exciting because this is an Iowa event that will be hosted by Appanoose County and will give us great exposure. Many organizations in Appanoose County are coordinating to plan this event.
Sustainable Economies Program: A film crew from Iowa State University came to Centerville on June 26 to film a video of what is happening with the Appanoose Sustainable Economies Program. Faris scheduled 13 on camera interviews with participants in the program including committee members, participants in the Appanoose Leadership classes and other county residents. This video will ultimately be posted on the Iowa State Extension website, the AEDC website and other appropriate local websites. A group of four educators from ISU were also in Centerville to present a proposal for the creation of a comprehensive map of the county and new wayfarer signage. This group was also involved in an additional meeting concerning a possible grant for work in the City Park. Meetings continue to be held for numerous other projects.
AEDC Website: Faris and the marketing committee from the Appanoose Sustainable Economies Program are currently choosing a design for the new sites, and supplying the Golden Shovel Agency additional information and photos.
Speaking Opportunities: Faris was a speaker at the Northeast Missouri Development Partnership fifth annual conference in Kirksville, Mo. in an entrepreneur development session June 21. Faris also spoke at an event held by the Meskwaki Indian Nation June 18 about how to start an entrepreneur development program.
Appearances and Meetings: Faris attended Rotary regularly, Opportunity Squared Regional Development meeting in Ottumwa, Coordinating Council, Building Opportunity workshop in Pella, Corps of Engineers workshop at RRWA, RLF Loan Review Committee meeting, Appanoose Leadership Classes (two), ACCF check distribution meeting, Downtown/Square meetings (three), economic development meeting in Kirksville, Mo., RASWC Board meetings (two), ISU film day, Chariton Valley Regional Housing Trust Fund annual meeting at Honey Creek Resort, Kaffee Klatch at Lee Container and economic development meeting at Tama. Faris interviewed Jay Dillard at Hydra Pools. Faris also visited with eight entrepreneurs looking to expand or start businesses.