NORFOLK, NEB. (April 24, 2006)—Gov. Dave Heineman was in Norfolk Friday evening to present the city of Norfolk as an economic development certified community.
“Northeast Nebraska benefits from the strong community involvement and leadership of Norfolk’s business community,” Gov. Heineman said. “By working together, this community is confronting the challenges of continued growth and doing so in an organized, efficient manner. As a certified community for economic development, Norfolk is formalizing its long-standing traditions of communication, collaboration and results.”
Norfolk (pop 21,476) is located in the Elkhorn River Valley in the northeast corner of Madison County. The community has taken the lead in establishing and championing a partnership that has positively influenced economic development efforts not only in Norfolk, but also in small communities throughout the region. Organizations in this effort include the city of Norfolk, the Northeast Nebraska Economic Development District (NENEDD), Norfolk Area Recruiters, Elkhorn Valley Economic Development Council, Norfolk Area Chamber of Commerce, Northeast Community College, and Faith Regional Health Services, to name a few.
“It is highly appropriate that Norfolk is recognized as a Economic Development Certified Community,” said Don Heimes, president of the Nebraska Diplomats, Inc. “The leaders of the community have demonstrated time and time again that they assume the primary responsibility of providing for economic development opportunities for Norfolk and its Northeast Nebraska neighbors. Going through the process to obtain this certification is further evidence of the community’s commitment to aggressively continue its economic development efforts.”
The partnership assisted with several business expansions, including MP Global Products, LLC, Sterling Computers, and Tyco Healthcare, and has been instrumental in helping start up a new incubator in the former Vishay Building. The incubator’s tenant, Nucor Detailing Center has created 200 jobs.
During the past year, NENEDD loaned four Norfolk businesses $350,000 total to create or retain at least 76 jobs.
“Norfolk area leaders work hard to make our community more competitive, and this shows our dedication to growth and development,” Tom Dover, Nebraska Diplomat Board Member representing the Norfolk area. “Becoming certified shows that we are ‘economic development ready’ and open for business.”
Sponsored by the Nebraska Diplomats, Inc., and development partners, and administered by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, the certification program provides technical assistance to communities throughout the application process. It is one of only a few programs in the nation that recognizes communities for economic development preparedness.
To qualify for certification, communities must meet criteria described in the application form. The certification process is ongoing and noncompetitive. Communities that exhibit the required documented economic development readiness as specified in the program criteria, and approved by a review committee will earn certification. Each applicant is judged against standards that include organization, local industry target identification and workforce issues, infrastructure, local financing and business assistance, building and site availability, and other program parameters.
Norfolk joins Ord and Holdrege as Nebraska Certified Communities.
FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Individuals who are hearing and/or speech impaired and have a TDD, may contact the department through the Statewide Relay System by calling one of the following numbers:
711, (800) 833- 7352 (TDD), or (800) 833-0920 (voice).
The relay operator should be asked to call DED at (800) 426-6505, or (402) 471-3111.