Why Do Economic Development?

One purpose of economic development is to create a vibrant local economy.

On a personal level, a vibrant local economy helps people fulfill their potential and pursue their dreams. It provides them the financial means to support an aging parent or care for a special needs child. It provides the means to buy a new car or have a nicer place to live. It means being able to donate to causes that are important to you. It’s the freedom to leave a stifling job for another or to even strike out on your own. It’s about having the ability to travel or continue your education or your children’s education. It’s about leaving a legacy.

On a community level, a vibrant local economy helps replace lost jobs. In the natural course of things, through the process of “creative destruction,” communities will lose 10-15% of their jobs annually. During the “great recession”, Larimer County lost a net 6,159 jobs that need to be replaced.

Benefits of Economic Development
A fuller description of the benefits of economic development can be found in “An Economic Agenda for Fort Collins, Colorado” at FortCollinsWorks. In short, they include attracting and creating new jobs, retaining existing jobs, increasing the tax base, providing stability and diversification of the economy, self-sufficiency, appropriate use of existing land, enhanced quality of life, improved quality of life, and community pride and reputation.