Audrey Danner: Stronger together | SteamboatToday.com
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Audrey Danner: Stronger together

Audrey Danner
Courtesy Photo

We are stronger together. I know this to be true.

So to see unity toward a common goal earlier this week in Craig was even more reassurance in Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership’s vision for our community’s future.

We hosted the Economic Diversification Roundtable on Wednesday at Colorado Northwestern Community College’s Craig campus and invited all economic leaders from Moffat, Routt and Rio Blanco counties. Just as importantly, the meeting also included partners from state and federal agencies that can help make the region’s economic future strong.

Among those partners were Jason Walsh, senior policy advisor in the executive office of the President, and Doug Lynott, program director for President Obama’s POWER Initiative for coal-reliant communities.

Not only were Jason, Doug and numerous colleagues of theirs in Craig to let us know about the many grant, loan and assistance programs we have at our disposal, but they also were listening to the unique challenges we face in our growth and stability.

My sincere hope for this event was for our communities to come together as we work side by side to build our economic future. I am pleased to say I think that is exactly what happened. Not only were we able to plan for further collaborate across county lines and act as one cohesive region, but we also were able to see the possibilities of local, state and federal-level entities working on projects together.

Now we can move forward together as a team. And we’ve got a great start.

On Election Day, Moffat County voters approved ballot measure 5A allowing for an additional lodging tax to generate about $275,000 each year and to form a Local Marketing District. Voters also approved ballot measures 1A and 2A, an override of Senate Bill 152, which will permit Craig and Moffat County officials to pursue broadband telecommunications infrastructure.

We’ve been working hard on these important growth components for our area, and these approved measures will move us further toward our goals.

I would like to thank U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colorado, for connecting me with Jason and his colleagues and encouraging them to visit our corner of the country and view firsthand what makes us special.

I also want to thank all who attended Wednesday’s roundtable for their openness and creative thinking about our region’s collective economic future.

Jason said during his visit, “Where these conversations are successful is where they are catalytic.”

I couldn’t agree more and realize we have to use this opportunity to springboard our work that will improve our economy.

I am so looking forward to it.

Audrey Danner is the executive director of the Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership. For more information about this roundtable and initiatives our region is eligible for, please visit http://www.craigbusiness.com or give me a call at 970-620-4370.


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