Interesting Facts

The iron furnaces in Lawrence County produced cannons for the Civil War.

Why is business retention and expansion important?

A healthy and vibrant local economy depends on the well-being of a community's existing firms. That is why we want to help you survive and grow in the Tri-State area.  If you are successful, the entire community benefits because:

* Sixty-five to eighty percent of all new jobs are created by existing firms.

* Businesses that stay competitive are more likely to remain in the community and possibly expand.

* Keeping an existing business is often easier than recruiting a new business.

* Potential new business owners will talk to existing business owners.

How can we help your business thrive?

In the short term we can: 

* Demonstrate support for local businesses.
* Help solve immediate business concerns.
* Establish an early warning system for
   business closings, relocations and/or layoffs.

In the long term we can:

* Improve the local business climate.
* Increase the viability of local businesses.
* Establish and implement a strategic plan for
   economic development.
* Support entrepreneurial activity by
   uncovering local buying habits and supply needs.

What is the county’s Business Retention and Expansion Program?

The Business Retention and Expansion Program is designed to gather information to help the county better support business expansion, job retention, job creation, and increased investment in the community.

As part of the program, Community Development staff will visit local businesses to obtain comprehensive information regarding the opportunities and challenges that exist for local business owners.

The visits are geared toward small and large businesses so that everyone can participate in the economic renewal process. After the site visits, businesses will receive help with particular issues. The data collected through the program will be used to create a long-range economic development action plan, which will include specific objectives, action items and target dates. The plan will be shared with the business community.

How do I know this is right for me?

The county’s Business Retention and Expansion Program is
right for you, if you:

* Want a single point of contact for the many business services
   throughout the Tri-State.
* Need an advocate who can walk you through necessary approvals
   and permits.
* Do not know who to contact at various local government agencies.
* Are looking for information on regional, state and federal programs
   to improve your business.

How is the program implemented?

Schedule a site visit -

The business visitation team will use a specially-designed questionnaire to obtain information on the needs of each business, issues it may be facing, and its future plans.

Participate in follow-up visits -

Community Development staff and representatives from the Economic Advisory Council will conduct regular on-site surveys to continue to evaluate the needs of the business and address its concerns.

Provide data for action plan

The Economic Advisory Council will develop an economic development action plan to address opportunities and obstacles that surface through the visitation program as well as many other initiatives. This plan will outline the most pressing issues identified by the business community.

Attend the appreciation event

The Economic Advisory Council will hold at least one business appreciation event annually. The event will promote networking through business education sessions.