Regional Cities Proposals Are In

Posted: Updated:
Shields says at least one submission's scope exceeded $900 million. Shields says at least one submission's scope exceeded $900 million.

Seven proposals have been submitted to the Indiana Economic Development Corp. for a shot at tens of millions in potential matching funds through the Regional Cities Initiative. Two submissions from regional development authorities will be selected by the end of the year for the program that has been championed by Governor Mike Pence and funded with $84 million from a future tax amnesty program. IEDC Vice President of Policy and Strategic Initiatives Eric Shields says, at first glance, some of the projects have "blown him away" in detail and scope.

Shields says there are some common themes among the projects including connectivity, innovation, entrepreneurship, reuse of abandoned buildings and downtown revitalization. He says ultimately, the Indiana Regional Cities Initiative Strategic Review Committee will be charged with viewing the projects through a lens that includes increasing talent attraction, making Indiana a "net inbound state" and creating jobs. The committee will meet in the coming weeks to review the proposals and determine recommendations for the winning RDAs.

He says the program has stimulated a lot of buzz throughout the state's economic development community and has brought together many stakeholders with goals of creating regional brands that could lead to a population boost.

Shields says submissions came from the central, east central, northern, northeast, northwest, southwest and west central regions

A notable absence from the list supplied by Shields is Our Southern Indiana. The group faced numerous hurdles along the way, including gaining the minimum of two contiguous counties to join the RDA. During an interview in early August with Inside INdiana Business, One Southern Indiana Chief Executive Officer Wendy Dant Chesser said Our Southern Indiana's bid had to work to overcome what she described as "rampant" fears about the regional process. Harrison County and Scott County both expressed support, but other attempts in counties including Clark, Floyd and Washington never gained the necessary approvals.

The tax amnesty program will be in effect from September 15 through November 16, with the first $84 million earmarked for Regional Cities and the next $6 million to go toward funding the Hoosier State rail service between Indianapolis and Chicago.

IEDC Vice President of Policy and Strategic Initiatives Eric Shields tells Inside INdiana Business a lot of creativity went into the proposals.
  • Perspectives

    • Increasing Women Leaders in Companies and Associations

      As members of an industry largely populated by male professionals, we see firsthand the need for more diversity. As Katie Culp, president of KSM Location Advisors, noted in a recent blog, diversity leads to better business decisions.



  • Most Popular Stories

    • Coal Loading Facility Planned For Princeton

      A subsidiary of Denver-based Hallador Energy Co. (Nasdaq: HNRG) has announced plans to construct a new truck-to-rail coal loading facility near Princeton. Sunrise Coal LLC in Terre Haute says the facility, known as the Princeton Loop, is expected to be complete in the spring of 2018. 

    • Opioid Withdrawal Treatment Lands FDA Clearance

      The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has given clearance for a medical device developed in Indiana to help treat symptoms of opioid withdrawal. The device, known as the NSS-2 BRIDGE, was created by Innovative Health Solutions Inc. in Versailles.

    • The Critical Importance of Shared Vision

      Vision statements and vision exercises - many organizations have them, but do they work? Business literature on the power of vision exists in abundance. But the real challenge about this strategic element is achieving and acting on a truly shared vision. Make no mistake, the power of shared vision moves mountains, and it's worth the required effort. Here are some thoughts to consider.

    • Holcomb Makes Board Appointments

      Governor Eric Holcomb has made another round of appointments to various boards and commissions. They Include the Indiana Public Defender Commission, the Indiana Tourism Council and the Indiana State Fair Board.

    • On-Air

      Find out when and where you can watch and listen to our reports.