Poll: Best Way to Build Kendall County's Economy?

Here are the strategic initiatives outlined in the Kendall County Community Economic Development Plan. Which do you think is the most important?

The Kendall County Community Economic Development Plan was built over a year. The process involved two business round-tables, analyzing the county's strengths and weaknesses and creating a list of action items.

The plan itself is available on the county's website here and is attached to this article as a PDF, but here's a brief rundown on the six ways the plan proposes to improve Kendall County's economy. (If you want to read about them in more detail, they start on page 53 of the economic development plan.)

  1. Promote tourism and events through publicizing key facts about movies filmed in Kendall County (Superman, Road to Perdition and Eagle Eye), developing historical and recreational tours and encouraging strong downtown business districts.
  2. Improve existing technology and infrastructure by bolstering local access to utilities, upgrading Internet access capabilities, and promoting important road networks.
  3. Expand higher education facilities and campuses to provide more skills training and job placement services, as well as a satellite campus of a regional university.
  4. Strengthen relationships with other economic development corporations and local businesses through countywide job fairs and one-on-one meetings with local business owners and managers.
  5. Promote the county’s economic development efforts through a better website, through trade shows and through brochures and other countywide marketing materials.
  6. Target key industry clusters, such as logistics and distribution operations along the I-80 corridor, manufacturing, professional services, health care, green technology, data centers and agribusiness.

If you had to pick one, which is the most vital? Tell us in the comments, or through the poll below.

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Terry C July 10, 2012 at 04:28 PM
Just my two cents here, but I don't think there is much that can be done. Here is why. The best way to build the economy would be to court big clean business, and big manufacturing. Any big clean business would probably want to be closer to the city, than to Iowa. Big manufacturing will not expand in this state due to taxes, regulation, and unions. I live in Plano ( formerly of Aurora ) and in my opinion KC & Plano shot themselves in the foot by rejecting the race track years ago. That is something that would have brought in people from all over the midwest. I think that trying to build the economy through tourisim is wishful thinking. Kendall County ( which is my home ) doesn't have anything that people would travel a great distance to come and see.
Jason G July 10, 2012 at 06:21 PM
I believe Raging Waves was a step in the right direction. It appears to attract people from outside of Kendall County.
Jane Enviere July 10, 2012 at 06:27 PM
I agree with you. I think it would be a wonderful surprise if we were able to attract enough industry that I actually felt it at tax time, but I do not believe that's viable. Would I be delighted to be wrong? Certainly! But, I agree, this far west...I just don't see it, not to the degree that will actually make a difference to me as an individual tax payer.
Terry C July 10, 2012 at 07:07 PM
Jason, I think that the park is nice too. But if you are looking for real economic development, you gotta think bigger than seasonal and retail industries. I'm talking about the kind of businesses that make people want to live where there job is at. I know I mentioned the race track, which would have been seasonal, but I have a friend that owns a home in Joliet and he has a race track deduction on his property tax bill. I don't recall seeing a water park deduction.
mecando July 12, 2012 at 03:11 PM
First let me start by saying that, I Love where I Live and Live Where I Love. I feel that we need fresh new leadership in this county. What we have had up to this point, has not taken us where we should and need to be. We should be way more innovative than we are currently. We either adapt or fail. I think that we must first take control of our spending as it currently exceeds our income. Education is way more expensive than it has to be, the park district has way to much of our money, and we don't need any more soccer fields........We could use the money and land for, wind mills and solar grids to provide clean cheap power to our county and it would pay for itself. We have the Fox river running through our county and that is a great start for building attractions for tourism. I'm not trying to pick on anyone here, I just feel that we are stuck in one spot and can't seem to get unstuck. There is a lot of opportunity in our county that would help reduce our taxes, increase our income and make our county more attractive to business. We need leadership that thinks outside the box.....Well thats my two cents worth and that won't even buy me a cheese burger....


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