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Partner Perspective

ECIA FY 2012 Annual Report - A Year of Partnerships 1

A Message from the Executive Director This year we took a different approach to our annual report. We decided to have our partners and members tell our story for fiscal year 2012. With our partners telling the story this year, we are given their perspective on the important programs and services we administer and provide in our region. Highlights for this year included providing down payment assistance for more than 50 low to moderate income households through the New Production program; the creation and piloting of the newly formed workforce development initiative Opportunity Dubuque; collaborating with the City of Clinton on a TIGER grant from the Department of Transportation; continuing with acquisition of flood related buyout projects; and developing an RFP and selecting a vendor for the Jule ITS technology project. Definitely another year of new challenges! As we look to next year and beyond, it’s important that ECIA remain the “go to” partner when meeting the demands and needs of our members which includes continually reinventing ourselves yet maintaining our role as a regional problem solver and convener. Our municipalities and community members count on us to address current issues while strengthening the region’s attractiveness for employment and livability. Kelley H. Deutmeyer, Executive Director East Central Intergovernmental Association


US Department of Commerce 4.2% Service Fees & Assessments Business 6.1% Growth 2.7%

State Funds 2.9%

FY 12 FUNDING SOURCES Membership Fees 1.0%

LT Borrowing 0.2%

US Department of Homeland Security (FEMA) 1.4%

US Department of Health & Human Services 3.1% Special Contracts 10.1% US Department of Transportation 3.2%

US Department of Housing & Urban Development 57.8%

US Department of Labor 7.4%

Fiscal Year 2012 Funding Sources 3

ECIA Helps Potential Homeowners

Buying a house is a big deal. Buying your first house is an even bigger deal. I began my search about two years ago looking all over Dubuque, spending my Sundays going through listings and many open houses looking for my dream home. Exhausted with my search, a friend of mine mentioned that ECIA had a brand new development on the west end. I liked the fact that it was brand new and was on the west end. I went to check it out and fell in love. I knew right away this was the house I wanted. The paperwork was easy to fill out and ECIA was extremely helpful in answering all of my questions and in a very timely manner. ECIA was my point of contact between all parties involved so they were able to organize all meetings and make everything happen so quickly and efficiently. I trusted that they were keeping me in their best interest. The really neat part about working with ECIA is that they were just as happy and excited as I was, to be finding my new home. Amy Kemp, First Time Homebuyer New Production Grant Program


City of Clinton Awarded TIGER grant

When at first you don’t succeed; try, try again, but in the case of the TIGER grant awarded to the city of Clinton in the summer of 2012 to finish the Liberty Square project, ECIA only had to try one more time. Thanks to ECIA, the City received $2.7 million from the US Department of Transportation's FY 2012 National Infrastructure Investments or TIGER 2012 Discretionary Grants Program to finish the 1.77-mile project corridor. The area contains approximately 220 acres of formerly blighted and contaminated land that has been cleaned up and is now ready for new economic development. The ECIA staff kept the project moving along from the beginning of the grant application process to the official award notice. They work together as a team when collaborating with communities on obtaining funding for priority projects and are tenacious to the very end. They give you the feeling that your project is the only one they are working on which couldn’t be further from the truth. It was a real pleasure working with all the pertinent staff on this project and we look forward to partnering with them on future projects and grants. 5

Steve Ames, President and CEO Clinton Regional Development Corporation

DB&T Becomes Petal Certified

Over the past year the green team at Dubuque Bank and Trust worked alongside the ECIA to get our petal project criteria completed and attain all five of the petals. We were the first business to commit to the Petal Project back in 2009 when the program had just been developed. Since that time the ECIA has been a great partner to us, lending their expertise in the various areas of sustainability and challenging us to go above and beyond just the steps of the program as it is really about changing the mindset. I feel the relationship has been beneficial to both of us and the ECIA, as a larger business and the first to start really working through the program we were able to provide feedback from our perspective on some of the different criteria. In April 2012 DB&T became fully Petal certified and with the help of the folks at the ECIA we hosted a top notch fully green, green ribbon cutting! The ECIA has really been gaining some momentum with the Petal Project just in the past six months alone as they continue to bring on other fully Petal Certified businesses and get yet more to sign up. Bret Tuley, Vice President of Operations and Finance Dubuque Bank and Trust


City of Dubuque Awarded $8 Million

ECIA is an integral partner in each of Dubuque’s major transportation and economic development projects – from writing grant applications and administering major grants to managing The Jule public transit system. Our partnership with ECIA has yielded tremendous results over the past year. One is the receipt of the $8 million State of Good Repair grant from the Federal Transit Authority, which will allow us to construct an intermodal transportation center in the Dubuque Millwork District. Another success is the Smarter Travel Pilot Study with IBM Research, which is providing data that will allow ECIA and the City to develop practices and policies that create lower-cost and lower-impact travel options for our residents. We look forward to the future enhancements to public transit these initiatives will offer. While there are many more partnerships that could be described, I would like to conclude with the ECIA management of The Jule. ECIA has turned The Jule into an award winning service and also obtained a federal grant to replace all of the aging equipment. I applaud their success and value the ECIA partnership! 7

Mike Van Milligen, City Manager City of Dubuque

Community Childcare Receives Grant

Community Childcare of Manchester has worked with ECIA on the rehabilitation of and addition to a building in Manchester into a childcare facility. Our Carousel Child Care Center received extensive damage by flooding in July 2010. Since that time ECIA has played an instrumental role in helping to obtain a CDBG Grant to make our project possible. The staff members we have worked with on this project have had the knowledge and skills that have made the process go smoothly. After applying for the grant initially, the scope of our project changed from constructing a new facility to rehabilitating an existing building. ECIA’s help with this was tremendous. Now that the project is well underway, we continue to rely on their expertise to assist us through the process. Vicki Ries, Director Community Childcare of Manchester


ECIA Assists Jackson County in Water Quality Issue

When the Iowa Department of Natural Resources told Jackson County in no uncertain terms to do something about a public health issue at Leisure Lake involving haphazard septic fields no longer meeting state codes, the county board called upon ECIA to help them find funding for a new sewer system. Eventually, the Eastern Iowa Regional Utility Service System (EIRUSS), staffed by ECIA, obtained $2.7 million in loans and $1.2 million in grants for the project from the Water and Environment Programs of the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development. Since Leisure Lake is an unincorporated area, the County chose EIRUSS, a public entity that serves five counties, because of staff expertise in these types of projects, and the fact that EIRUSS will own and operate the system. The County worked closely with ECIA, who helped them navigate the complicated application process. ECIA had the residents of Leisure Lake estates, as well as the surrounding area, best interests in mind as they ensured the area addressed any water-quality issues and becomes compliant. 9

Larry “Buck� Koos, Chair Jackson County Board of Supervisors

ECIA Connects Workers

Thanks to support from ECIA, Dubuque has a new pathway connecting underemployed and unemployed workers to jobs in our community through a new program known as Opportunity Dubuque. The program provides scholarship funded training at NICC, for participants who are selected through an employer supported interview and assessment process. Upon completion of the 18 week program, graduates can choose to interview with employers seeking skilled entry-level employees or continue their education by earning a degree. ECIA provided funding to support the cost of scholarships. Thanks to ECIA’s support, Opportunity Dubuque has connected nearly 100 people to education and training opportunities this year. For Project HOPE, an initiative of the Community Foundation, ECIA’s partnership brings ideas and resources to help the initiative impact some of our community’s biggest challenges. Eric Dregne, Vice President of Programs Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque


ECIA Coordinates Global Export Conference

As Vice Chair of Prosperity Eastern Iowa (PEI), an economic development marketing region that is staffed by ECIA, I work with Kelsey McElroy, an ECIA employee and coordinator of the PEI region, on a regular basis in advancing the region's economic development efforts. An excellent example of her leadership was her coordination and implementation of the 2012 Global Export Conference that was sponsored and coordinated by PEI. The conference was the first of its kind held in Eastern Iowa, and Kelsey led the charge in making it a very successful event. She organized a conference committee that consisted of members from around the State and spent countless hours in securing sponsorships, developing a detailed event agenda, and finding quality speakers and exhibitors. Her overall attention to detail allowed us to have a conference in which all 100 attendees indicated they would attend again. The conference featured an award presentation to a Bellevue business in recognition of them expanding their market internationally. Recipients are chosen based on their achievements and commitment to exporting as a component of their business strategy. 11

Tami Petsche, Executive Director DeWitt Chamber & Development Company

The Jule Continues to Expand The overhaul of Dubuque's transit system in the past couple of years has been a significant improvement. Ridership is up. Routes go more places and make more sense. Buses are more efficient and more attractive. Changes under way include an interactive technology plan and even more tailored service. That's excellent progress for a bus system that was severely struggling just a few years ago. In 2003, KeyLine ranked near the worst of Iowa's large transit systems in a handful of categories. Ridership ranked second from the bottom. Fast-forward to last summer. The Iowa Department of Transportation named The Jule, formerly KeyLine, the state's most improved urban transit system. The honor was based on the highest increase in ridership combined with decreases in cost per ride. The turnaround coincides with the city's decision to hire ECIA to manage The Jule. Most of the Jule's users are passengers out of necessity, not choice. If the transit system can connect people to jobs, schools and services in our community, the value of the system is significant. ECIA has done a great job in the two years since it took over management of Dubuque's transit system. We look for more positive outcomes for the entire community. Editorial Board Telegraph Herald, Dubuque


ECIA Helps Company Expand Behnke Enterprises, Inc. received assistance from the Economic Development staff at ECIA with our 2012 expansion project. This project consisted of the purchase of an additional 24,000 sq. ft. building and two new powder coating lines for our current facility. This expansion will enable us to create 25 new jobs and meet the every increasing orders for our agricultural and construction trailers from our customers. ECIA assisted us in obtaining a $200,000 forgivable/ repayable loan from the Iowa Economic Development Authority, as well as investment tax credits. ECIA staff successfully worked with us and the City of Farley in preparing and obtaining approval of the application for financial assistance. In addition, their small business loan company, E.C.I.A. Business Growth, Inc. approved and funded a $289,000 SBA 504 loan for the acquisition of the building and $300,000 RLF for the purchase of equipment. We are quite happy with the long-term low interest rates on both loans. We were pleased when they became involved with the expansion project, as they had assisted us with the financing of our original building when we first moved to Farley. We appreciate the experience and professionalism of ECIA and the expertise and dedication of the Economic Development staff. 13

Margie & Gerry Behnke, Owners Behnke Enterprises, Inc.

ECIA Assists in Community Planning

ECIA staff began work on updating our comprehensive plan in FY 2012. The comprehensive plan is a document designed to guide the future actions of a city with long-range goals and objectives for all activities that affect growth and development in the community. With the help of ECIA, we are updating our comp plan because we believe it’s important to keep up with the changing conditions in our community. The West Branch of today is different than it was when the first comp plan was originally developed in 1968 or last revised in 1997. With roughly 1,000 households in our City, we were very excited to have over 400 community members complete comp plan surveys. ECIA was an important part of helping us gather such a large response by assisting us in the development of an on-line survey option. With such a high response rate, we feel that our comp plan will truly represent the vision that our community members have for the City’s future. ECIA has been great to work with and we look forward to producing a more modern comp plan that reflects the current conditions and where we want to be in the future. Matt Muckler, City Administrator City of West Branch


ECIA is committed to working with member governments, their

citizens, and others to empower eastern Iowa communities and enhance the quality of life in Cedar, Clinton, Delaware, Dubuque and Jackson Counties. We exist because of the need for local governments facing similar problems to cooperate in finding solutions. With the constant goal of efficiency and quality in solving regional problems, ECIA continues to provide services in the areas of economic development, transportation planning, transit, housing, job training, grant-writing, grant administration, economic development, planning, codification, preparation of financial reports, and general information.


The mission of ECIA is to work with member governments, their citizens and others to empower communities and enhance the quality of life throughout the region.


7600 Commerce Park Dubuque, Iowa 52002 16

ECIA Annual Report 2012  

ECIA Annual Report 2012

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