North Central Missouri Development Alliance Board Member Jackie Soptic says technology and the internet have revolutionized economic development. Site selectors and companies can visit a location from their home or office by reading statistics and demographic information.
The United States Census also provides data on demographics. Soptic says that data should be used as a snapshot in time. However, it can be taken literally and used to make final judgments.
The 2010 Census reported Grundy County had 10,261 residents and 3,985 households, and Soptic reports on other statistics as well.
Soptic says data appear to show Grundy County is on the economic decline, but that is not the case.
Interest, questions, and concerns regarding Grundy County’s economic development can be directed to North Central Missouri Development Alliance Director Micah Landes at 660-973-2996 or any board member.
Soptic also pointed out one statistic that presents a challenge in business attraction are unemployment rates. Grundy County’s unemployment rate for September was two and a half percent. A site selector might think that means there is not enough available labor to staff an enterprise if it located in the county.
Soptic says Grundy County is also economically diverse. During the recession in 2008, the county and region’s economy had little negative downturn, which can be attributed to the economy not being totally reliant on one sector. The data indicates Grundy County’s economic diversity is insulating the county from a severe downturn during the pandemic.
Soptic adds that attraction and lead generating organizations do not take the time to call around a county to locate someone to provide information. It is common for the state to request information about a county or community and require a response in less than 12 hours.