CULTIVATE THE LOCAL WORKFORCE
Missed opportunities are the bane of community progress. Being efficient with our resources not only means strong community partners will work cooperatively and efficiently, it means we will take every opportunity to maximize existing resources, and capitalize on our K-12 school system as well as the new students Clark State Community College and Wittenberg University attract.
Without the addition of appropriate housing choices, the opportunity to grow our stabilizing population base will not come to fruition. This is a pivotal tipping point for the future of our area and we simply cannot afford to fail. However, as critical as housing options are, we cannot lose sight of downtown revitalization, health and wellness, or the outdoor narrative – all drivers for talent attraction.
BUILD THE ECONOMIC ENGINE
In the study of macroeconomics, two of the most consistent findings are that innovation drives economic growth, and small businesses create the vast majority of new jobs. Technically speaking small businesses create all jobs since large businesses start small too. The future of Greater Springfield, and all American cities, rests largely on how we adapt to and take advantage of technology, as well as how we nurture our own entrepreneurs with economic gardening tactics and strategies.
The number one factor for companies considering relocation since 1986 has been “Highway Accessibility” according to Area Development Magazine. However, in 2016, this factor was replaced by “Availability of Skilled Talent.” In Chicago alone, in just the past five years, 60 companies have relocated headquarters there, citing the need to “move to where the talent is” because they can “no longer afford to wait on the local community to supply it.” This trend is impacting cities across the nation and if Springfield fails to develop a pipeline of skilled workers, we will struggle to remain competitive.
Success with these proven strategies will create regional prosperity and a robust, thriving Greater Springfield/Clark County economy resulting in:
- Creation of 4,500 new primary jobs, representing a 12% increase over the past five years, in Agribusiness, Advanced Manufacturing, Professional Services, and Logistics and Distribution.
- Creation of 3,427 new secondary support jobs across a variety of industries.
- New Investment of $450 million or more across the County.
- Increase in the 21-44 “talent” age cohort by 2% (approximately 1,200 people).
Utilizing nationally recognized regional multipliers, the Convergent Outcomes Lab ™ has calculated this level of success will also:
- Generate $332,055,048 million in Annual Payroll Earnings ($887 million 2020-2024);
- Generate $183,547,747 million in Annual Consumer Expenditures ($410 million 2020-2024); a
- Increase Annual Deposits in area banks by $28,692,431 million ($82 million 2020-2024).
By focusing on the future in a deliberate and collaborative way, EXPAND GREATER SPRINGFIELD 2024 will play a critical role in pushing the entire region past the proverbial tipping point, ensuring future growth, strengthening livability, and helping to create a sustainable and broadly beneficial economy for all citizens of the region. EXPAND GREATER SPRINGFIELD 2024 is now seeking investors and community leaders that share in its vision of economic growth and prosperity, one where a “rising tide lifts all boats.”