Hide it under a bushel, oh no!

It seems to me that many of the best attributes of our Nodaway County are nearly a secret to those who are unfortunate in living elsewhere.

I was one of a few who attended a recent meeting where an update to our area’s economic development was shared, as well as plans for future progress. Representatives of the media, healthcare, agriculture, Northwest Missouri State, government, small business and the public library listened intently to a brief overview of the past growth of industry expansions, new restaurants, retail boutiques and other pluses to our region from Nodaway County Economic Development Director Josh McKim. There was also talk about the future possibilities to all of those areas: industry, retail and the age-old idea of value-added agriculture.

Some of the highlights included the wealth generators of manufacturing, government spending including Northwest Missouri State and the Maryville Treatment Center, agriculture, tourism and entrepreneurship. Some of the economic indicators locally show the poverty rates are declining, unemployment rates are below national averages, median household and personal income levels are increasing, home ownership rates are up, sales tax revenues are up, school enrollments are trending up and the number of businesses in the county is growing.

McKim gave the NCED report noting there have been nine new industrial projects this year. There have been 325 new jobs. There has been $554 million of public / private investment in 2015 – 19. Over $325,565 has been loaned to Nodaway County businesses through the local revolving loan fund and the USDA Intermediary Relending Program. Fifteen projects were funded including five restaurants, four retailers, two manufacturers and four service companies.

I would encourage each of us to be ambassadors of spreading this good news about the progress of our fine county.