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GFDA Top 9 For The Week

1) Helped host a visit by another advanced manufacturing prospect that is considering Great Falls for expansion. This prospect was brought in by a local business leader and is a great example of how we achieve more when we all work together!
2) Downtown Action Alliance met to discuss how to begin implementing Downtown Master Plan goals. City Planing Board voted to recommend approval of the plan.
3) Fire It Up, celebrating and encouraging female entrepreneurship, was a big success. Thank you to the many partners who made the event possible!
4) Ribbon cutting celebrated opening of phase 1 of the Highwood Generating Station gas-fired generation plant which adds $85 million to Cascade County tax base and creates 13 permanent high wage jobs.
5) August employment data was released. Our metro area/county unemployment rate stayed steady at 6.5%. Since August 2010, our labor force has grown 1.9% and our jobs have increased 1.2%. Looking back to just before the start of the recession in August, 2007, our labor force has grown 6.1% and our jobs 2.8%. Now, we need to keep the momentum going and ramp it up.
6) GFDA Board and staff started strategic planning to look at how we can best use our resources to grow and diversify the Great Falls trade area economy and support the creation of high wage jobs. Our first session focused on updating a vision for Great Falls in 2030 and determining areas to focus on over the next 5 years. We will be asking investors and community partners for feedback on a draft plan in October.
7) Two of our team members started the Economic Development Finance Professional certification training process. Thank you to the MT Dept. of Commerce for bringing this program back to the state, saving us travel expense.
8) Signed a renewal of our contract for the Procurement Technical Assistance Center through which we help businesses learn how to compete for government contracts.
9) We all know that agricultural production and processing are very important industries for Great Falls, but here are a couple of facts from Food Business News that reflect big growth opportunities: world population is projected to reach 7 billion by the end of this year and grow to 8 billion by 2023. That's an additional 83 million people a year to feed.
Congratulations to the Voyagers Ball Club for an outstanding championship year!
Congratulations to the Homebuilders Association for another amazing Parade of Homes! Let's keep working together to grow demand so we can put more of our top quality construction folks back to work.


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Great Falls, MT 59401
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Great Falls, MT 59403