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Sarah Gomez
sgomez@midwestpartnership.com

 

Chad Schreck of the Midwestern Partnership, the economic development group that Audubon County is a member of, was at Monday's Audubon County Board of Supervisors meeting.

Schreck and Joe Behrens of Region XII were on hand to update the Board on the progress of the TIF agreement with West Central Cooperative. Behrens has been putting together an Urban Renewal Plan for the TIF agreement and presented the Board with a draft copy.

Behrens advised the Board that in the coming weeks they would need to identify exactly where they want the TIF district boundaries to be. "Once you have that detail in place, the rest of the process can begin," said Behrens.

The board members are in agreement that including county paved roads N-36 and F-58 in the TIF district would allow them to capture tax dollars that could be specifically used to repair those roads. Behrens agreed. "It absolutely makes sense to include those roads," he said. "It doesn't matter of the district will have 15 or 20 miles of road in it. If those roads will be impacted by extra traffic, it makes sense to include them."

The Board said they would have the map and a few other details in place by the end of the month. Behrens said he is looking at a December 1, 2011 deadline to begin certifying debt to the TIF.

Schreck then gave the Board more god news stating that he had been in contact with a physician from Kansas City who was looking to open an insurance processing facility in Audubon. Schreck said, "I'll be honest, nothing is a guarantee, but things are looking very promising. He is not even looking at another area, at this time, only Audubon."

The facility would employ at least 10 at the start with possibility of an additional 10 workers down the road."We're doing our best to keep on top of everything. It's an awesome opportunity. He wants to get going as soon as possible and said that Audubon would be the perfect location. We're really hoping this is something we can pull in," said Schreck.

The gentleman is a practicing physician and wants to continue the practice. He has been in contact with Tom Smith at the Audubon County Memorial Hospital to inquire about opportunities. Schreck said that affordability and the location between Des Moines and Omaha were two things that really interested the potential entrepreneur. Schreck and former Audubon County Economic Development Director Tom Nielsen have met with the gentleman to give him a tour of the area and several prospective locations for the facility were also looked at.

Schreck said "He told me that a friend of his said 'If you ever want to get out of the city and are looking to settle down in a small town, go to Audubon." He remembered that and here he is." Read more »

 

West Central Cooperative hired 19 college students this year as part of the organization's 12-week summer internship program.

The students involved in the internship program came to the cooperative with a variety of backgrounds, skills, knowledge and insight. This year the interns represented five different universities throughout the Midwest, including Kansas State, University of Missouri, Oklahoma State, Iowa State and Purdue. Interns worked in various departments throughout the company ranging from accounting to agronomy and from outside operations to network administration.

West Central has expanded its internship program over the last several years. Recruiting from several different places has been critical to this effort.

"We want a variety of students; we look for different talents from different places," said Barb Quandt, director of human resources. "We want top-notch student so we look around." That strategy has created a very diverse and successful workplace for the organization.

Throughout the summer, interns were expected to learn about West Central, develop skills in their designated position, interact with the agricultural industry, and complete a capstone project that required them to show they have developed something of significance to the organization.

Not only does the organization benefit from having student workers, but the students also leave the program with a one-of-a-kind experience. West Central makes it possible for students to get real world, out-of-the-classroom hands-on experience.

"I have done more at West Central than I could have imagined. It's amazing how much responsibility they give their interns," said Brookelynne Slabaugh, communication intern. "I have enjoyed applying what I have learned in school to the work place and seeing my skills and knowledge being used in this organization."

The program wrapped up on August 10, when interns gave a presentation on their capstone project to the CEO and West Central management team. - The Bee Read more »

 

The Minnesota Vikings have promoted Jeff Anderson to director of corporate communications.

Anderson has been with the team for nine years. Vikings vice president of stadium affairs Lester Bagley said "Jeff has done an outstanding job at the Vikings and has been a star performer. He worked his way up from an intern in 2003 to director level, which is significant at the Vikings. He is highly regarded by ownership, management, players, coaches and staff, and is the consummate team player and professional."

The Vikings created the new position for Anderson to lead all non-football related public relations matters. That includes work on the team's push for a new stadium, community relations, sales, marketing and legal and business affairs.

"I'm excited and especially thankful to Wilf ownership and Vikings management for supporting me and giving me these new responsibilities," Anderson said. "This is a first-class organization and I'm happy to be part of it."

Anderson is a native of Adair and has played a large role recently in the Vikings' efforts to get a new stadium built in the Twin Cities suburb of Arden Hills.

Anderson will begin his new duties immediately. - Adair News, September 1, 2011. Read more »

 

'Trails & Trills' Rolls Saturday on Raccoon River Valley Trail. Muscicans perform between Jefferson & Cooper. Read more »

 

A new executive director has been hired to lead Midwest Partnership Corporation (MWP), a four county organization that provides economic development services to Greene, Adair, Audubon, and Guthrie Counties. Chad Schreck comes to MWP from nearby Region XII Council of Governments, where he served four years as a regional and economic development planner.

"We are pleased to welcome Chad to the organization and feel very fortunate to have found a candidate with his experience," said Mike Underwood. "Although the search lasted longer than we initially anticipated, we feel we have found the perfect candidate to move MWP and the area we serve forward."

Prior to working with the Council of Governments, Schreck earned a master's degree from Drake University in public administration with a concentration in executive leadership. He also earned a bachelor's degree in law, politics and society at Drake and worked as a legislative aide in the Iowa House of Representatives.

"Having collaborated with Midwestern Partnership on several projects over the years, I have seen firsthand the impact the organization has on the region and I am excited and honored by the opportunity to lead these efforts," said Schreck. "My familiarity with the organization and the region will help make for a smooth transition so we can work quickly to capitalize on the opportunities presented to us, plus go after new ones. My goal is to provide services leading to the retention and growth of existing businesses, the creation of new businesses, and put our communities in a position to compete successfully for new investment".
Read more »

 

A ribbon cutting ceremony was held July 15 following the lamb show at the Greene County Fair for the Roger Nailor shelter house. The shelter house is being built in memory of the late Roger Nailor, a long-time employee of Peoples Trust & Savings Bank in Scranton. Nailor was also very passionate about the Greene County Fair and the 4-H program.

The 24 x 24 shelter house is built on a concrete base. It is located in a grassy area north of the cattle barns, and west of the fair board office. It will serve Greene County Fair patrons and will be enjoyed by families and visitors traveling on the Raccoon River Valley Trail and camping at the new trailhead campground just north of the shelter.

Peoples Trust & Savings Bank donated $10,000 to the Greene County Fair board for construction of the shelter. Other persons and organizations that have been involved with the project have included the Jefferson Rotary Club, the city of Jefferson, the Greene County board of supervisors, the Greene County conservation board, the Greene County lamb producers, the fair board, Tri County Lumber, Hamilton Redi Mix, Central Iowa Memorials, Ogren Custom Graphics, Brad Bendickson and Mike Dennhardt.

Completion of the project is anticipated by the end of the summer, and an official dedication will be planned at that time. - Jefferson Herald Read more »

 

A new executive director has been hired to lead the Midwest Partnership Corporation (MWP), a four-county organization that provides economic development services to Adair, Audubon, Greene and Guthrie counties. Chad Schreck comes to MWP from nearby Region XII Council of Governments, where he has served four years as a regional and economic development planner. Read more »

 

The 16th Annual Golf Outing of the Midwest Partnership Development Corporation is June 30th! The event is again at beautiful Lake Panorama National Resort & Conference Center near Panora, Iowa.

The cost to register a team is $300, or individuals can play for $75, which covers golfing on 18 holes, cart fees, and BBQ lunch. Teams will also be recognized on event promotional material.

Additionally, there are sponsorship opportunities available for those who cannot golf but wish to sponsor the meal and event. These organizations will also be recognized. Contact Sarah Gomez at (515) 523-1262 or sgomez@midwestpartnership.com.
Read more »

 

The Bicycle Friendly State program from the League of American Bicyclists has ranked all 50 states on their bike-friendliness, and Iowa has ranked sixth for 2011 with an overall grade of B. Read more »

 

Sister and student-athletes Britta and Hallie Christofferson are familiar with the challenges that college life and college sports can bring. They also know that their experiences growing up in 4-H help them meet those challenges. Read more »

 

ISU Swine Medicine Education Center receives approval from Board of Regents. The center will be the first in the nation dedicated to providing veterinary students and practicing veterinarians from across the United States and around the world with extensive hands-on experiences and education in swine health and production. As the top hog-producing state in the country, Iowa is the perfect location for a center focused on keeping pigs healthy. Read more »

 

Region XII recently completed the U.S. Highway 30 Corridor Study. This study provides a compilation of past trends, existing conidtions of U.S. Highway 30 itself have been collected and evaluated including traffic counts, truck traffic, safety, surface width, shoulder width, surface condition, trip generation, and structures. The study was completed jointly by six regional planning affiliations that are bisected by the U.S. 30 Corridor: Region XII, Metropolitan Area Planning Agency- RPA 18, Central Iowa Regional Transportation Planning Alliance, Region 6 Planning Commission, East Central Iowa Council of Governments and East Central Intergovernmental Association. The information from this study will be used to justify and prioritize improvements along U.S. Highway 30. Read more »

 

On August 26th the US Department of Labor announced a $1,352,000 grant to assist workers affected by the layoffs at Electrolux. The grant is awarded to Iowa Workforce Developmemnt and will be administered by Region XII. Dislocated workers in 15 counties, all of whom are elibigble for Trade Adjustment Assistance, will be covered by the grant. The grant will provide access to WIA Career Counselors, vocational training and "wrap-around" services that may include childcare and transportation assistance. Read more »

 

Interstate Power and Light Company, an Alliant Energy company, is working on a major rebuild project in the community of Jefferson. THe "Power Iowa" project is designed to serve customers in the area and keep a commitment to providing reliable power, according to Alliant Energy. Read more »

 

Jerry Neal, CEO Guthrie County Hospital, has reecntly unveiled plans for a new health program in Stuart. The Guthrie County Hospital Board of Trustees has offered to puchase the West Central Valley administrative building (formerly the Catholic School) located just south of Historic All Saints Center for $30,000, and the West Central Valley School Board has accepted that offer pending a public hearing which will be held March 16, 2011. Read more »

 

The Rolling Hills project has grown from 167 to 193 wind turines, according to Tom Budler, General Manager of Wind Development for MidAmerican Energy. 24 of these are tentatively located in Adair county. Each turbine will have the capacity to produce 2.3 megawatts of electricity. Read more »

 

Mike Abildtrup of West Central Cooperative, Joe Berends of Region XII, and Jason White of Midwest Partnership EDC, were all in attendance at Monday's Board of Supervisor's meeting to give an update on teh status of a proposed $10.1 million construction project in Audubon County. Read more »

 

The Midwest Partnership Development Corporation is seeking an Executive Director for the quad-county area, specifically Adair, Audubon, Greene and Guthrie. Read more »

 

The Iowa Transportation Commission recently approved $474,000 for Whiterock Conservancy's Soft Trail Program project, a federal Recreational Trails Program project. This funding is part of the greater $1.4 million that was granted by the commissionfor five other similar projects in the state of Iowa. Read more »

 

The City of Greenfield has been awarded a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) from the Iowa Department of Economic Development for $500,000 earmarked for the Warren Cultural Center restoration project. Read more »

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