The Bowman County Development Corporation strives to work towards achieving the goals laid out in our communities’ strategic plans and provide service to our county on a large scale and within our daily operations. Here are a few things we have been focused on.
• TIF District: The BCDC worked with the City of Bowman in passing the final resolution for Tax Increment Financing. The final resolution appoints the City Commission the Urban Renewal Committee that would allow them final approval on an application. At this point developers are able to come forward and apply. A draft application has been created and is awaiting final approval from the City Commission.
• Renaissance Zone – Approved the D&J Rentals Renaissance Zone application. They will be remodeling and adding on to the Brosz Engineering building on Main Street.
• Laura and Teran were invited to be apart of the Extension Services Advisory Board for Bowman County. We attended an annual overview and contributed ideas for areas of focus for 2014.
• Five developer’s packets have been sent out for both commercial and housing development and we provided the Bowman School District with 10 recruitment packets to assist with teacher recruitment.
• Working with Cheryl Ryan on finalizing a Developer’s Agreement Template. City has begun reviewing the proposed Developer’s Agreement template. It will serve as a checklist and final agreements will be specific to each case.
• City Commission approved a Project Review Committee to include City Engineer, Police & Fire Representation, EDC Director and Cheryl. This committee will review project applications and present questions for a developer before meeting with the City Commission.
• Vacant Homes Initiative: The Housing Authority received and approved their first application. Property is located in Scranton.
• Toured the new apartment complex, “The Landing”. The top floor has been sheet rocked. Expected completion is on track for spring.
• RLND Short Course has concluded. Agendas were built to be specific and useful to emerging leaders in our area. 30 individuals from all professional backgrounds spanning the southwest corner of North Dakota participated. We had very positive feedback and feel the course has been a success.
• The Leadership and Action program generated great dialogue between current leaders as well as participants of the RLND class.
• Shop Local Campaign will be launched this May. Laura and Cathy are working on various advertising and promotional items to encourage the Bowman Area to “Put their money where their house is” and educate the public on the importance of shopping local.
• Laura attended the Finance Research Outreach program put on at the Strom Center by the SBDC. There was a good representation of local developers and banks to learn about the many financial resources available for growing the economy in SW ND.
• Support has been provided to 17 new and continuing clients over the past 3 months. A variety of business types are included in that total; a possible new non-profit in the area, construction related businesses, engine repair, travel, restaurants, health, franchise and equine were represented by our clients. Two clients have begun working with the Dakota CDC on both SBA funding as well as IRP funds. We have completed two flex pace buy downs that have been in the works this past year. Time was also spent verifying appropriate tracking for each client has been completed.
• Dale’s Clothing success story featured in “The Drill.”
• Business Technology Acceleration Program is being marketed is being marketed to businesses in our community. The programs are built to assist small businesses use the latest technologies to their advantage.
• Welcomed Erin Miller and her new Verizon Wireless Store. Extended our services if she should need help in the future including a Store Front Grant Application.
• Submitted an Rural Business Enterprise Grant Application to conduct a feasibility study on the Sears Building for the expansion of ABLE, Inc.’s retail services. Worked with Peggy, Dean and Lyn on revising the resolution for new or expanding retail sector businesses. New legislation requires communities of 40,000 or less to seek voter approval on granting any retail property tax exemptions. Bowman County and the City of Bowman will not be pursuing a vote at this time. Primary sector businesses are still eligible.
• Aurora Keppler was hired as our new Tourism Assistant. Position is for 19 hours/week. She has already designed and sent out a Bowman Community Events Calendar to local businesses, has been trained on the Access Channel and Fairgrounds sign.
• Promotional binders are being created and used to market local businesses and services to the guests of Bowman. These binders will be found in each hotel room in Bowman. The project was approved for funding by Tax & Tourism. Aurora will be working on ordering materials, gathering content and putting them together.
• 14 relocation and visitor packets have been distributed to a variety of locations ranging from Utah to New York.
• Growing Bowman Facebook page continues to grow its following. Likes are up 15.7% from last newsletter. Social Media is a focus of the marketing goals for the BCDC in 2014. A twitter account has been created, @GrowingBowman, and ground work is being done for a Linked-In page.
• Growing Bowman County Radio spot continues at 9 AM Friday mornings. We are excited to share information about what is going on in community development through this partnership with KPOK.
• The Partners in Marketing Grant application submitted by the BCDC was approved. The grant dollars will be used to update the current BowmanND.com website and will cover 90% of the cost. Greater control of content from the represented entities, a mobile format, and updated look will result from this update. The 2014 Marketing Plan outlines the website as the main marketing driver for Bowman County.
• Finalized the BCDC/BACC Employee Contract. It was approved by both boards and Steve Wild. As of 01/01/14 the Executive Secretary will be a full time Development Corporation employee contracted out to the Chamber.
• Teran conducted the employee evaluations for Laura and Cathy and the Executive Committee conducted the Director evaluation. Board approved wage increases for 2014.
• Teran attended the Department of Commerce Developer’s Roundtable as well as their New Professional’s Day.
• Teran attended the VisionWest Federal Roundtable with Commissioner Lynn Brackel. They are currently working on making edits to the Regional Plan.
• Wells Fargo lease agreement was reviewed and approved by Steve Wild and signed and sent off. Expiration date is March 31, 2019.
• BCDC Gaming has been selected for a limited compliance review. Review has been submitted.
• We have had several conference call SBDC Regional Meetings. Discussion on goals and budgets for 2014.
• Completed the 2013 Annual Report and held meeting on February 26. Annual reports were mailed to the BCDC Membership and emailed to over 500 individuals. Election for available board positions were also held. Vote was announced at the annual meeting. Three individuals were on the ballot, Board Members-Kevin Bucholz & Scott Hardy were re-elected to serve a 3 year term. Officers were elected at the March 3, 2014 regular meeting of the BCDC. Officer roster is: Justin Wolbaum, President, Duane Bowman, Vice President, Julie Lockert, Secretary, Kevin Bucholz, Treasurer
• Met with potential Museum Director hire.
• All Seasons Arena bookings are at a record high. Have booked several large events for spring and summer, we have sent out 4 event contracts.
• The poker tournament was held in January. Donation was given to the All Seasons Arena.
• The Vision West Regional Plan is undergoing final edits. Met in Minot and had a working day reviewing the plan and getting it ready. The group was unable to finish so we will meet again in Williston.
• The Bowman Parks & Rec has again begun having committee meetings to discuss the possibility of the Rec expansion. The committees have been broken up in to Design, Finance and Marketing. The BCDC organized and facilitated a meeting between the Bowman City Commission, Bowman County Commission, Bowman County School Board, SW Healthcare, Bowman Park & Rec and SW Transit. With a project of this magnitude continuity is needed between all of these boards.
• Plans and preparations for the upcoming ND High School Rodeo Finals have begun.
The BCDC continues to be active and engaged in our local government, Bowman County and Cities of Bowman, Scranton, Rhame, and Gascoyne, and provide assistance as needed as the opportunities arise.
We are fortunate to be a part of these committees and/or are board members of the Bowman Area Chamber of Commerce, Vision West, Renaissance Zone, Developer’s Agreement Committee, Bowman City Tax & Tourism, and Rotary. The Bowman County Development Corporation welcomes interaction with the citizens of Bowman County. Please feel free to stop by our office or reach out via phone or email if you have any questions.