Economic Gardening in USA
In t980, a city had participated in a state-administered recruiting program that was not producing promising results the City Council asked the city staff, to find a new direction for economic development, and that new direction from the council was the start of economic gardening over the past 25 years.
The program has evolved based on the following core principles number one trying to recruit companies to relocate from another part of the country, with tax incentives is a zero-sum game and the odds against long-term success or enormous number to private entrepreneurs are the engines of sustainable economic growth number. Three local government can develop the tools and skills, to assist entrepreneurs and number four focusing on local companies creates a strong sense of fairness and equity in the community the program that we have in place today is the result of a lot of experimentation, and we expect that it will continue to change into the future the generic idea of assisting small businesses is economic development, is of course not new there are numerous federal state and local programs that provide such services the three key innovative components in which distinguishes.
The Littleton economic gardening programs are the decision by the City Council to reject recruiting and places confidence and local business the depth and sophistication of the analytical tools we have developed to assist local businesses, and the strategic focus on stage to emerging growth companies while continuing to serve any business that request services. we think there are also at least three relevant measures of effectiveness for the economic gardening program over twenty year period comparative data show that our job growth has consistently outperformed national Colorado, and Denver Metro area job growth in 2005, a Small Business Administration report found that job growth in Littleton was twice that of the Denver Metro area three times that of the state of Colorado and six and a half times that of the US during that same period of time our population growth was half that of the metro area even during the 2008 crash a number of companies and our program have continued to add jobs each year and the trust and the confidence expressed in the city by the local business community is an indication of the effect given the severity of the current economic gardening and economic climates job growth is clearly the top public policy issue in the United States today in the report just released by President of USA Council on Jobs and effectiveness contains a specific set of recommendations for nurturing high-growth enterprises, which we believe reflects the significance of the program that we’ve been doing for 20 years. While there are large national issues beyond the control of local government which affects the economic health such as deficits tax policies and investments in education and infrastructure.
Economic gardening can give every state and local government in the country the ability to have some impact on their future Wilson is a small community of about 40,000 residents. Our program is staffed with four people and an annual budget of about five hundred and seventy thousand dollars which is about 1% of the city’s annual operating budget we believe that the tools and concept is concepts of economic gardening can be adapted to almost any size community we are aware of at least 13 states and 30 local communities that have established some version of this program they range from the small size of Grenada Mississippi two states such as Michigan and even organ in closing.
We’ve got data about you compared it to the Denver Metro area do you know, if you were to subtract out the city of Denver in rural areas and just to compare it to other suburban cities around Denver do you know what the comparison would be in job growth you mean, if we were to compare our suburban City with other suburban cities and in Denver yeah no I don’t have the answer to that I’m sorry, I have a slightly somewhat related question I note that you served in 2008 and in 2009 about 02 and 430 businesses per year directly through, this office do you how many jobs those businesses created in those two years we think we’ve created specifically from those jobs we’ve consistently created around 600 jobs a year in that period of time so we’ve had no net job loss in 2008, 2009, 2010 in those 400 in those 430 businesses you know we don’t keep a scorecard by the specific ones I can name four or five off the top of my head that we would reach at least a 100 jobs over that period.