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From the President's Desk: June 2017

Regionalism is an important topic in economic development that we talk about every day at our office. Communities are stronger when they’re supporting each other and working together, especially when it comes to state and federal advocacy. Later this month, I am excited to once again join a delegation of regional leaders from the Austin MSA traveling to Washington D.C. as a part of the Austin Chamber’s annual advocacy trip to represent the needs of Hays and Caldwell Counties.

Staying top of mind through face-to-face meetings with your U.S. senators and representatives is an effective way to advocate for the needs of your regional community. It’s for this reason that communities visit with their federal elected officials regularly.

The City of San Marcos makes an annual trip to meet with federal departments and our congressional delegation, including FEMA, HUD, The Department of Labor, TxDOT, Natural Resources and Conservation Services, and Veterans Association. It is in large part thanks to the advocacy efforts of City of San Marcos elected officials and senior staff that The Department of Housing and Urban Development initially awarded San Marcos $25 million dollars to address the needs of the community to rebuild and recover and the historic 2015 floods. To put that into perspective - Houston was award $60 million for the multiple thousands of people who experienced damage there. And just last month, the City of San Marcos was awarded an additional $7.5 million for disaster recovery for the 2015 floods.

As you’ve likely read about in the news, and about which you’ll read in the newsletter, the San Marcos Regional Airport in San Marcos and Caldwell County is thriving with new jobs and investment. Our Texas delegation, including Senator Ted Cruz, Congressman Lamar Smith, Senator John Cornyn, and Congressman Lloyd Doggett have all provided assistance with the development of the airport.

It is our goal as the economic development organization for Hays and Caldwell Counties to make sure that our national policy makers understand important issues at home and keep the economic strengthening of our whole region a priority.

I have also just recently celebrated my fourth year as President of GSMP. Wow - what an amazing four years it has been! From the thousands of jobs we’ve helped to attract to the region and the programming we’ve offered to our local businesses to the kind, smart, and passionate people I’ve gotten to know and work alongside, it continues to be my honor to serve our community in this role.

We’re approaching the halfway point in the Vision 2020 economic development strategy and I can gladly say that the needle has been and continues to move. Our Implementation Work Groups have gotten off the ground and are meeting regularly. We’re at 90 percent of the Vision 2020 goal for total employment, $2,000+ over the goal for average annual wages, and we’re just over the per capita income goal. We enjoy the collaboration between our regional partners and stakeholders to keep up this success and to fill in the gaps that help to combat challenges.

Thank you for all of the support that you have offered to my team and me. We simply can’t do all of this purposeful work without you!

Onward & Upward!

Adriana Cruz

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