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Corridor mission includes cooperation

By Staff | Jul 2, 2010

Kathy Evert, executive director of the Iowa Lakes Corridor, told Estherville Rotarians how the Iowa Lakes Corridor is working for the mutual benefit of its members.

“It’s been a much better climate in the past few months,” Evert said, noting that employers were calling back employees to work.

Evert noted the Corridor’s four goals:

n To attract new business and enterprise.

n To create primary jobs through the area.

n To attract and retain people in the area.

n To continue to find and build partnerships to fully succeed in goals and objectives in the four-county region of Buena Vista, Clay, Dickinson and Emmet counties.

Evert noted the Corridor’s promotional efforts, including trade shows and lobbying for funding at the state and federal level. One major success story is obtaining funding for Highway 86 realignment and getting the final south four miles of the highway on the Iowa Department of Transportation’s five-year plan.

n Helping Eaton and Polaris obtain defense contracts.

“We’re more optimistic,” Evert said. “We’re feeling much better about the economy.”

Evert pointed to the Corridor’s latest theme – Why go back – prominently displayed on area billboards.

Evert recapped the Corridor annual meeting Monday night when ELC High School teacher Jenny Nitchals received the Corridor Chairman’s Award for furthering business education opportunities for her students.

Evert noted Corridor participation in trade shows in the food and wind energy industries.

For the next fiscal year, the Corridor will hold a new residents’ study to identify people who have moved into or out of the area. Late next year the Corridor will start a new strategic plan process.