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Local Economic Development Agency

A local economic development organization serves as a bridge connecting businesses and government authorities. Economic development professionals guide business owners through processes to choose the perfect land or real estate, scale their businesses within government guidelines and start strong businesses. These nonprofit corporations promote community growth, and they help companies thrive to grow the local economy and increase employment rates.

Business ownership can be challenging, and not all entrepreneurs understand local, state and government guidelines. Working with local economic development authorities helps business owners navigate zoning laws, taxes, finances and real estate for more efficient planning.

What Is a Local Economic Development Corporation?

A local economic development authority is a nonprofit corporation that connects businesses to resources available through government and non-profit organizations.  Economic development professionals offer guidance and resources to business owners to revitalize communities and promote a thriving economy. These community-based organizations allow businesses to expand and succeed in their towns and cities.

What Do Local Economic Development Agencies Offer?

Local economic development agencies consist of expert staff with experience in community promotion, lending, and real estate selection. They maintain relationships with the following people:

  • Business owners
  • Landowners 
  • Economic and workforce development professionals
  • Municipalities
  • Municipalities

Chambers of Commerce

Private sector lenders and business professionals

Their knowledge allows local economic development agencies to assist businesses expand or retain jobs in the community.   They often work in areas that community organizations seek to redevelop, and may offer businesses the following resources and assistance:

  • Fixed Low-interest loan programs
  • Tax Incentive programs
  • Grants
  • Tax abatements
  • Location site selection services

What Are the Benefits of Local Economic Development Agencies?

Communities and businesses can benefit significantly from working with their local economic development agency. These nonprofit organizations help business owners, who contribute to the community’s economy by hiring talent and paying taxes, by offering the following benefits:

Opportunities for Business Owners

Economic development agencies expand opportunities for businesses. They provide extensive knowledge about local real estate and they offer low interest loans for expansion or retention.  financial assistance opportunities. These resources allow business owners to succeed even in challenging times.

Community Growth

Local economic development agencies help communities grow, providing valuable advice and assistance that increases local employment and exports. New businesses in a community hire employees, creating job opportunities for residents and increase the tax base.

Businesses can also increase a community’s exports by sending services and products to consumers outside their immediate geographic region. Exporting brings new money into a local economy, which promotes economic growth versus recycling the same money within the community.

What Can a Local Economic Development Agency Do for Your Business?

If you lack experience in real estate development or business planning, guidance and resources can help you get started and effectively maintain your business within a community. A local economic development corporation will offer consultation services to help you make beneficial decisions for your business and leverage resources from other agencies that can assist in your growth. This assistance can help you take the appropriate steps to start a successful business that continues to bring in revenue.

Offer Guidance

Relocating or starting a business can be challenging for business owners. If you are planning to open or relocate a business in your community, you may wonder where to build or purchase real estate, how to handle zoning laws and how to fund your business. A local economic development agency offers valuable expertise in these areas to help you make the best decisions for your business and the community.

Working with a local economic development organization can help you choose the best location for your business. Knowledgeable staff can help you find available real estate or land to build on and advise you on creating a realistic business plan. Guidance from local economic development authorities helps businesses find strategic locations to bring in a broad customer base.

Facilitate Effective Planning

Businesses must meet specific state, local and federal guidelines to operate in a community. Local economic development agencies can help you secure permits from federal, state and local agencies. Coordinating with the appropriate authorities in advance provides efficiencies in reviewing and approving zoning, land developments and business plans.   A local economic development agency can also help you reach out to developers and form relationships with the following professional services:

  • Contractors
  • Engineers
  • Local architects
  • Financial institutions
  • Commercial Real Estate Brokers
  • Hiring Agencies

Provide Resources and Financial Assistance

A local economic development corporation can connect your business with the following state and local loans and grants, which allow you to access public funding opportunities.

  • Tax-exempt loans
  • Real estate acquisition loans
  • Construction loans
  • Working capital loans
  • Loans for equipment and machinery purchases
  • Tourism infrastructure grants
  • Water and sewer grants
  • Streetscaping grants
  • Conservation project grants

Your business may qualify for tax credits if you plan to improve, expand or rehabilitate an existing lot or building. You can also earn tax credits for building within specific zones or receive benefits for starting a business in an underused area. When you work with a local economic development corporation, you can learn about available opportunities. Once you understand all these options, you’ll have a better idea of which tax credits, tax exemptions, loans, grants and incentives you may be eligible for.

Recruit Employees

Another way local economic development agencies help businesses start-up and remain in communities is by recruiting employees. A local economic development corporation can help you attract, hire and retain qualified team members by working with the local workforce development board.

Call CAEDC for Help With Effective Business Planning

Starting, relocating or growing a business is faster and easier with access to helpful guidance and resources. Working with a local economic development agency can help you deal with real estate, zoning laws, financing, and other challenges related to starting or expanding your business. Local economic development agencies connect business owners with state, local and federal authorities for efficient planning, and they can help you confidently grow your business.

The Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation helps businesses and organizations grow in the Cumberland County region. We support Cumberland County’s economy by connecting businesses with local, state and federal authorities and facilitating effective business development.

Contact CAEDC to learn more about how we can help you grow your Cumberland County business. We tailor services to meet the needs of individuals and companies. If you’re not sure if CAEDC can help, call us to discover what resources are available to you.

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