Economic Development

I am focused on bringing new jobs into Rapid City, and keeping the ones we have. Politicians often tout Rapid City’s low unemployment rate (about 4.1%). That number sounds good, but good leadership must also recognize that underemployment is a serious issue in the Black Hills. We are working together to change that.

It’s no secret that City Hall can stop or slow down just about any project it wants to. My administration is committed to finding ways to facilitate economic development rather than slow it down. Cutting red tape is good not only for new business, but for existing businesses.

I have a forward-looking, positive vision for the Mayor’s office, which directly benefits the business community.  Rapid City is a great place to live and will probably continuing growing no matter what. But growth by osmosis is not good enough for me. I believe we can achieve greater prosperity for the entire community by slashing the red tape and showing a commitment to facilitating economic development – for new business and for our existing businesses.

My goal is to ensure all existing and prospective businesses, regardless of size, are treated fairly.

City Hall must facilitate growth and not stand in the way. I am working to bring a renewed focus on economic development to the Mayor’s office. Regulation is necessary, but should be consistent across city government.

  • I am focused on finding ways to say yes to growth and new business, while also focus on encouraging and supporting our existing businesses.
  • We’ve issued our first Industrial Permits in 5 years, including WL Plastics, which will be bringing 40+ full time jobs to Rapid City.
  • We are exploring the vision of a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) to help bring in more industry in our region.
  • We are slashing the red tape to encourage economic development, and to make the process easier for our citizens, businesses and employees. Two years ago we had more than 80 committees.  We now have about half that. [See 1/11/13 RCJ article]
  • We have rewritten many of our codes and procedures to streamline our processes while will ensuring public safety and accountability to our citizens.
  • Starting in September 2011, 2nd Floor at City Hall is now open until 5 PM. Many of the offices previously closed at 4 PM.

Help keep positive, honest leadership in the Mayor’s office. I have a positive, forward-looking vision for Rapid City.