Published June 20, 2016
FORT HALL, IDAHO – On Thursday, June 16, 2016, the Fort Hall Business Council engaged in a meeting with the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Committee as part of the Tribes’ CEDS project, led by the Tribes Planning Department. The CEDS Committee consists of tribal department managers/staff, district representatives, surrounding city and county leaders, such as Blackfoot Mayor Paul Loomis and Chubbuck Mayor Kevin England, along with county commissioners, such as Bingham Commissioner Whitney Manwaring, and regional organizations (e.g., Regional Economic Development Eastern Idaho) and educational institutions (e.g., Idaho State University).
The purpose of the meeting was to provide an update to the Council on the CEDS project process, timeline and outcomes-to-date on CEDS requirements including: a demographic and economic profile of the reservation and comparisons to surrounding areas, the state and nation; a summary of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that will help or harm economic development on the Reservation; and a list of potential economic development projects.
What is CEDS?
- A tool for tribal, community, regionally-driven economic planning.
- Requirement for U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration and other federal agency funding eligibility.
- A plan for stronger, more resilient tribes, communities and economies.
Tribal Senior Planner, Sherwin Racehorse, also gave a presentation on Exit 80 Master Planning project, included two (2) visual boards showing proposed planning projects. Discussion included preliminary strategic planning on our reservation to increase economic productivity, cultural tourism, family recreation and ways to build stronger partners with surrounding communities.
Proposed projects for considering as part of Exit 80 Master Plan include a movie theatre, a world class golf course, Water Park and arcade, automotive service center, multifamily and single family housing project, and more.
The next step in the CEDS process is to continue to work with the Business Council and CEDS Committee to define the Tribes’ economic vision and identify goals and economic development projects that will help the Tribes achieve that vision.
Working in partnership with the Tribes’ Planning Department, contractor for the CEDS project, Agnew:Beck Consulting, based in Boise, Idaho and Anchorage, Alaska, is conducting outreach to district residents over the next two months in preparation for their third community visit the week of August 8th.
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