EDCUtah April 28, 2009
Newsletter Archive
Economic Review
Jeff Edwards President's Message
Proactive Recruitment
Integral to EDCUtah's Work

Utah is fortunate to have a stellar reputation for doing business, which creates many economic development project leads. Each month we receive up to 20 leads, of which approximately 50 percent turn into business development projects. Currently EDCUtah is tracking over 260 projects. In addition, we have a strong, proactive recruiting effort, built upon years of relationships with companies and consultants with assistance from Utah industry. Building on our reputation for having a young, educated workforce, excellent livability, superb access to higher education and our location in the Intermountain West, EDCUtah works to identify industries to build Utah's clusters of economic development.

Industry clusters are certain industries where Utah has achieved significant strength, such as advanced composites, aerospace, outdoor products and energy. We start with these strengths, then work with the Governor's Office of Economic Development (GOED) to perform in-depth research by talking to Utah companies in these clusters to target specific businesses that may be a good fit for Utah. Next, GOED is currently doing some high-level business marketing in states with less than favorable markets, higher taxes, labor costs and utility prices. This marketing helps plant the seed within industry niches and EDCUtah's role is to follow up with visits and make the business case for Utah. Research and timing are so important to this effort. Our goal is to help companies think of Utah and to see the advantages of relocating, expanding or establishing new businesses in our great state.

Today's Economic Review also includes links to many of the ED-related news stories from the past week. As always, if you have comments, suggestions or topics you'd like to see in the Economic Review, please contact us by clicking the "Comments" link on the bottom of this page. Enjoy!

Jeff Edwards

Jeff Edwards
President and CEO


Feature Story

ULCT and EDCUtah Share Common Interests

The Utah League of Cities and Towns (ULCT) just wrapped up its annual mid-year conference, a two-day event held each spring in St. George. How to deal with rising costs and falling revenues in a dwindling economy was a central theme for the event, which is attended by municipal leaders from across the state.

While EDCUtah is not a member of the ULCT, EDCUtah President & CEO Jeff Edwards says his organization feels a strong kinship with the ULCT because the League is important to economic development in the state. EDCUtah generally sponsors a booth at one or more ULCT conventions, to create awareness about EDCUTAH among Utah's elected officials and to listen and discuss the economic development needs and interests of communities throughout the state.

"The Utah League of Cities and Towns is really a partner in economic development," says Edwards, "as it guides its member municipalities on issues crucial to economic development, such as land use, planning and zoning, fee structures, public services and legal compliance."

What's more, several ULCT board members also sit on EDCUtah's Board of Trustees, including Farmington Mayor Scott Harbertson, Midvale City Mayor JoAnn B. Seghini, and Payson City Mayor Burtis Bills. Sandy Mayor Tom Dolan, a ULCT past president, is also a member of the EDCUtah Board of Trustees, while ULCT member and former Murray City Mayor Lynn Pett, serves as a consultant to EDCUtah.

Ken Bullock, ULCT's executive director, says he recognizes the significant influence his organization can have on economic development at the municipal level.

"Economic development drives the growth of our member communities, and factors such as land use, fee structures and policy issues can significantly impact economic development," he says. "In fact, proper land use and economic development are really one and the same."

Bullock adds that the ULCT strives to help its member municipalities set policies and fee structures that are not burdensome to economic development, maintain balanced tax bases and understand the ramifications of broad policy decisions. To that end, the ULCT provides a variety of training programs, conferences, workshops and publications for its 244 members. The mid-year conference is only one of six such events the ULCT sponsors every year. Planning and zoning is another area that can have an impact on economic development. The ULCT offers a review of zoning ordinances as a service to its membership and has also published training handbooks for planning commissioners and members of boards of adjustment. Another handbook published by the ULCT describes the development and application of impact fees.

One of ULCT's primary services is legislative advocacy, wherein it represents municipal governments at the state and federal levels. Bullock says the League's legislative team assists in preparing legislation and helps guide the legislation through the process of becoming law. What's more, the ULCT encourages its members to get involved in the public process as well, especially with regard to important municipally related issues. Annually, the ULCT conducts a "Local Officials' Day at the Legislature," where members meet state legislators at the capitol to discuss shared concerns.

"While economic development is not its stated mission, the League serves a vital role by providing guidance and services of significant value, which many of Utah's smaller municipalities might not be able to afford on their own," adds Edwards. "We are grateful for the work of the League and the service it provides to Utah's municipalities."

The ULCT was initially organized in 1907 as a non partisan, inter-local, government cooperative. Today it represents municipal government interests with a strong, unified voice at the state and federal levels, and provides information, training and technical assistance to local officials on municipal issues to help create a greater public awareness and understanding of municipal responsibilities, governance and administration.

In the News

USTAR breaks ground on new $130 million building
The Utah Science Technology and Research Initiative broke ground yesterday on a new, $130 million dollar research facility on the campus of the University of Utah. University President Michael Young said the facility will allow many innovations to be discovered that will help the Utah economy. (KCPW)

New Federal spending could boost geothermal energy
The riskiest part of geothermal energy development is proving that there's enough hot water underground to run a power plant. That's where researchers would like to see the new money made available from the federal government used as private industry scrambles to meet the demand for renewable energy. (KUER)

In the fast lane: Utah speeds past other states
 in road spending
Utah, unlike many states, is in the fast lane when it comes to steering stimulus cash to highway projects. (Salt Lake Tribune)

Utah's national parks to get stimulus money
The Obama administration celebrated Earth Day on Wednesday by announcing $750 million worth of stimulus-funded projects to improve national parks and monuments. That included at least some money for 12 of the 13 National Park Service units in Utah, or all of them but Rainbow Bridge National Monument. (Deseret News here and here)
(Salt Lake Tribune)

Utah Governor Huntsman on Monster Energy Supercross: This is the Greatest Sport in the World
Utah Governor Jon Huntsman Jr. welcomed back Monster Energy© AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, to Salt Lake City's Rice-Eccles Stadium today at a press conference with Honda Red Bull Racing's Andrew Short, Davi Millsaps and Ivan Tedesco and Muscle Milk/MDK/KTM's Justin Brayton and Michael Sleeter. (SuperCross Online)

Salt Lake City prepping for plug-in cars
It won't happen overnight, but someday soon in Salt Lake City you may see electric cars recharging their batteries by plugging in to newfangled parking meters or tethering to outlets in downtown parking lots.
(Salt Lake Tribune)

Utah firm helps mitigate carbon emissions
Two high-profile capital investment firms are banking on a privately owned Utah company to help them become major players in the emerging greenhouse gas and carbon trading markets.
(Deseret News)

Utah health reform a model for U.S.?
As the nation moves to reform its health care system, Congress should look to Utah as an example of a market-based solution, Utah House Speaker Dave Clark plans to testify Tuesday at a hearing in the nation's capital. (Salt Lake Tribune)

Looking for the bottom
Sometimes recovery isn't possible until you hit rock bottom. Mark Knold, chief economist for the Utah Department of Workforce Services, believes that's true for Utah's recession. The question on everyone's mind is, "When will that be?" Knold aggress with the optimists that it could be as soon as later this year. (Park Record)

Air Force wants hotel at Quinn's Junction
Despite statements from the military that reject The Canyons as a future hotel site, elected officials in Summit County, who are desperate to stop the Air Force from building a resort at Quinn's Junction, continue to push a parcel near State Road 224 for the controversial development. (Park Record)

High school will offer biomanufacturing classes
High school is no longer just about reading, writing and 'rithmetic. Soon it will also be about biomanufacturing. The Granite Technical Institute is gearing up to offer the state's first biomanufacturing education program for high school students this fall. (Salt Lake Tribune)

Ogden razes houses for Riverfront project
Growing impatient with the California developer of the proposed Ogden Riverfront Project, the municipality began demolishing eight rundown houses this week along Grant Avenue. (Salt Lake Tribune)

Logan River water to power mill
Water diverted from the Logan River will provide electricity again at a Logan flour mill. (Salt Lake Tribune)

City putting stimulus to work
It's back-to-work season for St. George city officials - and hopefully for local construction crews - as a series of stimulus-fueled construction projects are slated to start this summer. (Spectrum)

Raser's Hatch plant delivering power to California
Raser Technologies, Inc., a leader in energy technologies, announced that the Hatch Geothermal Power Plant, Beaver County, UT, began delivering clean, renewable electricity to the City of Anaheim, California.
(Utah Business Magazine)


April 29 - May 1
SME (San Diego, CA)

April 30
New Investor Orientation (EDCUtah)

May 2-6
IAMC (Asheville, NC)

May 4-7
Windpower 2009 (Chicago)

May 27
EDCUtah Board meeting (Sheraton Salt Lake City)

May 17-20
ICSC (Las Vegas)

May 18-21
SAMPE (Baltimore)

May 18-21
BIO (Atlanta)

June 3
EDCUtah Golf for Grants Match Grant Tournament (Eaglewood Golf Course in North Salt Lake). This is the main fundraiser for EDCUtah's Community Match Grants Program. Sponsorship opportunities for 2009 are limited to investors in EDCUtah and are now available. Please call Arthur Franks, membership director for EDCUtah at (801) 323-4242 to secure your sponsorship opportunity!

June 11
Quarterly Investor Update (TBD)

June 16
New Investor Orientation (EDCUtah)

June 17
Executive Committee Meeting (EDCUtah)

July 20
OIA Thought Leader (TBD)

July 21-24
Outdoor Retailer Summer Market (SL Convention Center)

August 10-13
AUVSI (Washington, D.C.)

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The EDCUTAH Economic Review is a weekly publication of the Economic Development Corporation of Utah. It is distributed to EDCUTAH partners and selected other government and civic organizations interested in Utah's economic development.

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