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at1010

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Our very own TOOzer @at1010 was on the Habitat Podcast not long ago. I finally had a chance to listen to it, along with a few other episodes, while doing chores over the weekend. For you guys looking to add more deer-related content to your playlist, here's a good one. @giles @Big_Holla @Isaacorps @jagermeister

https://habitatpodcast.com/habitat-...iling-persistence-proper-stand-access-timing/

Oh gosh- idk if anyone wants to listen to me haha. I’ve learned a lot over the years! This episode might not be to cringy haha. Few others from longer ago - woof! Haha

Thanks for sharing Jesse. Ps. I listened to your podcast about your role as port authority. That must be another thread but it was fantastic.
 

bowhunter1023

Administrator
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Appalachia
Jesse, I listened to this podcast - super interesting!! I know that the draw for more companies to come to the area is key, but are there also focuses on how to increase business for companies that are already in the area? Also, do you all have the population to support significant industrial investments, from a workforce perspective, or is that a barrier -I know that new business would need to compete with all the chemical companies, do you feel that is a deterrent for new business, as they believe the "good workers" are taken?

I am also curious if all the businesses are fully aware of all the varying govt. programs/bid opportunities that could be available for them. I know that for the company I work for, we are in a rural, hub zone area, and we are registered as a small business. This allows us to win govt. bids and solicitations. I could see value in that as somewhat of the "low hanging fruit" approach to helping existing business grow their revenue, which can result in more jobs, new hire needs, etc. Then a simultaneous effort in drawing in new business.

The work you do is truly helping people and it is inspiring. Thank you for sharing this podcast, I really enjoyed it. The socio-economic and logistical struggles that plague Appalachia are not small, but through hard work from men like you, they clearly can be eased.

Great stuff buddy.

I didn't forget about ya @at1010, just wanted to respond when I could fully articulate a response. And to that point...

I know that the draw for more companies to come to the area is key, but are there also focuses on how to increase business for companies that are already in the area?

A key metric for folks in my position, especially in Ohio where our state group (JobsOhio) prioritizes this, are BRE visits or Business Retention and Expansion visits. These are 1-on-1 conversations with business leaders regarding their current situations and needs. For me, this usually takes the shape of workforce and/or market development since those are my areas of expertise. When it comes to funding, there is a plethora of programs to support a variety of needs for existing businesses from capital improvements, market access, and workforce development. My professional opinion is that we should spend 80% of our time helping existing businesses and 20% attracting new ones. I’m a little skewed in that breakdown at this point due to our efforts to secure a 165-acre industrial park. I have two potential tenants already, so I’ve spent the vast majority of my time this year trying to close those deals.

Also, do you all have the population to support significant industrial investments, from a workforce perspective, or is that a barrier? I know that new business would need to compete with all the chemical companies, do you feel that is a deterrent for new business, as they believe the "good workers" are taken?

Like most rural areas, we would struggle to support a 500-employee project. That said, we lose those projects before they ever get to the workforce component due to a lack of sites and infrastructure. The two projects I mentioned earlier require 130, and 18, employees respectfully. The occupational breakdowns of both projects lend themselves to our regional strengths when it comes to workforce skills and availability. And because they are financed by outside money, they are among the highest paying jobs in those particular job categories, which greatly enhances their ability to attract a qualified workforce. The bigger deterrent for new businesses is our collective inability to pass a drug test. It’s well known that this is a huge issue in Appalachia, and I get asked about it a lot.

I am also curious if all the businesses are fully aware of all the varying govt. programs/bid opportunities that could be available for them.

Some do, most don’t. And honestly, there’s a lot out there that I don’t know about and that’s kind of what I’m paid to do. Thankfully, I have a great network in the state and federal funding arenas, so I know who to call when I need to assess the landscape. Part of conducting a BRE visit is to find the need, then pair that to the funding source that can help with said need. A few of our local businesses have top-shelf HR/talent people who serve on our regional Workforce Investment Board with me and they’re well ahead of the game when it comes to this stuff because of that involvement in the WIB.

This job is not for the faint of heart, but I am loving it so far. The great thing about economic development is that it’s such a broad umbrella, you can truly make this job whatever you want it to be. My predecessor held a Masters in Public Administration and was very much involved in local planning and governmental administration. I’m not a planner, nor am I qualified to meddle in the administration of governmental services. I’m a doer and my job is to get shit done, so our organization has made a drastic shift from planning and .gov admin to being one that executes/facilitates real estate transactions, infrastructure, and construction projects. That’s my background and when you’re a 2-person organization, you lean into the strengths of your leader. My decade in the oilfield as a landman negotiating 300+ deals and assisting with the construction of 50+ miles of pipeline and dozens of other ancillary infrastructure projects set me up perfectly for this job. Whoever follows me might be better at community development and grant writing, so we’ll undergo another transformation. But until then, we’ll be known for taking projects from concept to reality cause that’s what I enjoy doing!
 

at1010

*Supporting Member*
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Fantastic response Jesse! Damn I love your passion.

I am not in economic development. However, I can tell you that the company I work for and many of my customers are in similar positions to what you have described. One of my best customers is in rural, northern AL, and they too have the issue of getting people to pass drug tests - unfortunately. Our mfg. has grown a lot of the past few years and we have increased our work force significantly, it has proven trying at times for that reason as well.

Really great work you are doing buddy - I really enjoyed the podcast and the write up you did above, explaining the complexities to job growth in rural Appalachia.

Thank you!
 
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at1010

*Supporting Member*
3,564
88
Word on the street is this guy recorded an episode with Jared and Brian at the Habitat Podcast last night. It was a great conversation and I look forward to sharing it with this group. Quite the honor to be a guest on a podcast that's had Mark Drury, Don Higgins, and Bill Winke as guests!

Hell ya!! I cannot wait to check it out!!! Way to go Jesse!
 
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jagermeister

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Ohio

Wildlife

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USA
There isn't a one cedar tree on our property or next door that doesn't get it by bucks. Cedar trees most definitely attract our bucks within our area. Doesn't matter if they are 2'-25' tall. everyone of them on the 750+ acres in the area, I have observed buck rubs and beds underneath them all. Good idea on getting some for your farm. I've planted and/or transplanted them on our property just over the past year, including mulberry trees. The mulberry gets hit hard as well.

Edit: just finished the podcast. Again, excellent information shared! I enjoyed it!

Well done Jesse!
 
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Wildlife

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USA
There isn't a one cedar tree on our property or next door that doesn't get it by bucks. Cedar trees most definitely attract our bucks within our area. Doesn't matter if they are 2'-25' tall. everyone of them on the 750+ acres in the area, I have observed buck rubs and beds underneath them all. Good idea on getting some for your farm. I've planted and/or transplanted them on our property just over the past year, including mulberry trees. The mulberry gets hit hard as well.

Edit: just finished the podcast. Again, excellent information shared! I enjoyed it!

Well done Jesse!
Just one example of a cedar tree that gets hit every year and always has beds underneath it. If I were to go through the past four years of my hike photos, I could produce several other examples of the cedars I have come across that are just like it.

20181204_115326.jpg
 
Do you think planting store bought arborvitae would be a good alternative to finding native cedars to the area? Since they are from the cedar family is what I am thinking. My dad lined his driveway with them and I guaranteed him that they would get rubbed and torn up but they haven't.
 

Wildlife

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USA
Do you think planting store bought arborvitae would be a good alternative to finding native cedars to the area? Since they are from the cedar family is what I am thinking. My dad lined his driveway with them and I guaranteed him that they would get rubbed and torn up but they haven't.

I really can't say, but I do know that our local native cedars are true magnets for bucks.

Just took a snap shot of the four I transplanted last spring acquired from the wooded area next door that had rubs on them initially, plus a tiny mulberry that has already has been attacked this winter by the deer in the area.

20210112_114610.jpg
 
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bowhunter1023

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Appalachia
Do you think planting store bought arborvitae would be a good alternative to finding native cedars to the area? Since they are from the cedar family is what I am thinking. My dad lined his driveway with them and I guaranteed him that they would get rubbed and torn up but they haven't.

For visual and thermal cover, yes, but I wouldn't expect a similar attraction when it comes to rubbing and bedding. Unless you trimmed the bottom 24-30" off the tree. But arborvitae would definitely be a suitable substitute for cedars when it comes to visual and thermal cover.
 
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