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Economic Development: Improving The Quality Of Life Through Job Creation

This column originally ran in the San Marcos Daily Record on June 24, 2020.

What comes to mind when you hear the phrase “economic development?”

At its basic definition, economic development is about improving the well-being of a community.

For the past nine years, the Greater San Marcos Partnership (GSMP) mission has been focused on improving the quality of life for the residents of Hays and Caldwell counties by facilitating the creation of new and good paying jobs. More specifically, GSMP recruits new companies to locate and expand their operations to the Greater San Marcos region — think of businesses like Mensor, Epic Piping, Amazon Fulfillment Center, and most recently Urban Mining. GSMP also assists already established companies with growth and expansion aspirations. And during this unprecedented time, GSMP is connecting established companies with the informational and financial resources they need to overcome the challenges brought on by COVID-19. 

Since 2010, GSMP has helped 38 companies locate to or expand in the region, resulting in approximately 5,000 new direct jobs and an annual economic output/impact of well over $2 billion. 

As a small nonprofit organization, GSMP is only able to accomplish this work in collaboration with a host of regional partners. These partners include city and county staff and elected officials, other economic development departments and organizations, education institutions at all levels, workforce development organizations, chambers throughout the region, business community leadership and many others. 

Economic development is truly a team sport.

With these partners, we’re currently developing our region’s economic development plan for the next five years, called VISION 2025. We began VISION 2025 in February by taking public opinion on the strengths, weaknesses and desires of the region. Now, we’re refining that strategy with our collaborative partners to consider the impact of COVID-19. Our goal is to build a thoughtful, well-informed strategic plan that provides sustainable long-term economic growth. 

I look forward to sharing more information about VISION 2025, economic development activities and GSMP itself in future editions of this column. Until then, I invite you to visit our website to learn more about GSMP and the resources available to the business community during this challenging time at greatersanmarcostx.com. I also welcome any questions you may have regarding GSMP and our work. You can reach me at jasong@greatersanmarcostx.com.

COVID-19 RESOURCES: Find regional resources and updates for businesses here. Go To Info