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eCOBALT’S SALMON AND BLACKFOOT OPERATIONS, AND REGIONAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FOR EASTERN IDAHO RECEIVE NATIONAL AWARD
IDAHO FALLS, ID – May 9, 2018 – eCobalt’s mining operations in Salmon and proposed refining facility in Blackfoot, along with Regional Economic Development for Eastern Idaho (REDI), have received the Corporate Investment & Community Impact award from Trade & Industry Development, a leading national trade publication dedicated to site selectors.
With hundreds of project submissions throughout North America, eCobalt and REDI were recognized for eCobalt’s investment in Eastern Idaho for cobalt mining and refining as one of only 15 finalists in the Impact Division of the Trade & Industry’s Annual CiCi Awards.
“For eCobalt’s Blackfoot and Salmon operations and REDI to be nationally recognized for eCobalt’s significant mining and refining investments in our region is an important achievement,” said Jan Rogers, CEO of REDI. “It’s an honor to receive a CiCi award and speaks highly of the region’s strong business climate. Site selectors are likely to draw their attention to Blackfoot and Salmon as a result of this significant economic development achievement.”
CiCi Awards’ Community Impact category recognizes projects that will make a big impact on their respective community and local economic development organizations that work in lockstep to attract this kind of development.
“The City of Blackfoot is very pleased to have been selected as the site for eCobalt’s refining facility,” said Blackfoot Mayor Marc Carroll. “We are looking forward to the positive impact this refining operation will have on area jobs and to the local economy. Light manufacturing companies can be challenging to attract to smaller communities, but we are very proud and excited to have been selected as the future home of eCobalt.”
BLACKFOOT — Jan Rogers, CEO of Regional Economic Development for Eastern Idaho (REDI) and Scott Reese, a REDI board member from Bingham County, reported to the Bingham County Commissioners on Tuesday. Two weeks ago, Rogers and 22 other representatives from Idaho attended the Select USA Summit put on by the U.S. Dept. of Commerce in Washington, D.C. “There were 1,700 companies there from 70 countries,” she said. “Each of these companies has been vetted by our consulates and embassies and want to invest in the United States.” Idaho was one of five top sponsors of this event. The others were Texas, New York, Georgia and Ohio. “Being one of the top sponsors brought interest,” Rogers said. “We pitched the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education available in Eastern Idaho. Within 70-80 miles, there are two universities and four labs, including one national lab. The two universities are Idaho State University and BYU-Idaho. About 30,000 students are on campus each semester. “That’s called a cluster,” she said. “From Select USA, we have six leads focusing on innovation. That includes two site visits in July, both on the same day.” “We didn’t forget agriculture. Eastern Idaho doesn’t have a lot of variety of Ag products but what we are big in, we are giant in.” Three posters were displayed at the Idaho exhibit. The posters stated: “Bud, Barley and Back;” “Backed, Bottled and Fried;” and “Energy, Nuclear, Cyber, Security, Space and Beyond— just another day at the office.” “Idaho is not just number one in malt barley; we are also number one in malting barley,” Rogers said. “One billion beers are produced each month in Idaho.” Other examples cited included Teton Valley Potato Vodka that is produced in Driggs. It has received international awards. Idaho is known for potatoes and Wada Farms has added a biologic potato bag that is made from 25 percent potato. “REDI is building opportunity for now and the future,” Rogers said. Asked how Eastern Idaho and, specifically, Bingham County, could help expand economic opportunities, Rogers replied, “Business is not coming in here without figuring out talent. To develop talent, we need to increase the pool of people, retain who we have and develop the pipeline—people with skills businesses need.” Rogers has been appointed to the United States Investment Advisory Council (IAC) established by the Commerce Department in April 2016. As one of 19 private and public sector leaders from across the nation, Rogers will advise U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker on the development and implementation of strategies and programs to attract and retain foreign direct investment in the United States.
Published on MSN Money->
Stats for Idaho:
2016 job growth: 3.5%
2015 job growth: 2.9%
New jobs in 2016: 23,580
New jobs in 2015: 19,200
Unemployment rate by year-end 2016: 3.8% Unemployment rate at year-end 2015: 4.0%
The Gem State is home to booming tech and aerospace industries, as well as military bases that boost spending in surrounding areas. And as Idaho attracts more residents from other states, companies both old and new are expanding here: wireless data company Cradlepoint is growing quickly in Boise, and agribusiness firm J.R. Simplot will hire 600 for a new processing plant in nearby Kuna.
There are plenty more opportunities: Micron Technology, a semiconductor manufacturer, will add 200 jobs in Boise when its plant expansion is completed in early 2017. Yogurt
maker Chobani is expanding its plant in Twin Falls. And American Food Equipment is building a new manufacturing facility in Caldwell. (The company, based in the San Francisco Bay Area, couldn’t find room to expand where it was, illustrating how restricted land availability and high cost of living in parts of California are causing companies to look to nearby states for expansion.)