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Bastrop EDC explores opportunities, improvements as it measures up

Business retention and expansion, workforce development, primary job creation, developing and exploring housing solutions, developing Bastrop’s brand and improving communication are among the goals the Bastrop Economic Development Corp. hopes to achieve in the next three to five years.

In a meeting Monday night, Alysia Cook of Opportunity Strategies led the corporation’s board in an analysis of the organizations strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats — or SWOT — as it looks to develop goals, metrics and known performance indicators for the corporation.

“We’ve spent the last two years building this organization back up in becoming a full-service EDC and all core areas that this community should expect with our budget level and what we’re doing,” Executive Director Shawn Kirkpatrick said.

“We continue to be financially strong,” he said. “Something that I’m very proud of is the fact that we not only have been able to expand our services but when we look at our operating costs year over year, we’ve been able to balance those costs and actually reduce those even though we expanded our services and expanded our staff.”

But despite the good financial footing and expansion of services, among the corporation’s weaknesses is the creation of primary jobs.

“We need to strengthen our incentive policy — particularly for our Type A primary job projects — from where we are today to help us work better with those companies and what our expectations are up front,” Kirkpatrick said. “It causes some of our projects in our negotiation and early phases to drag out because we don’t have a good incentive policy in place.”

Read the full article at Statesman.com