04/25/13 — Fremont develops strategies

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Fremont develops strategies

By Steve Herring
Published in News on April 25, 2013 1:46 PM

FREMONT -- The Small Towns Economic Prosperity program committee Tuesday night came up with four strategies to pursue as it looks at ways to promote the town of Fremont and hopefully spur economic growth.

Specifics as to how those strategies will be achieved remain to be worked out, Town Administrator Kerry McDuffie said.

Also, anyone interested in serving on committees devoted to those strategies is encouraged to contact the Town Hall at 919-242-5151 to sign up, he said.

"We would love to have their help and input," McDuffie said.

The four strategies are:

* Develop an attractive downtown for new businesses

* Provide quality housing options for workers and retirees

* Encourage development or renovation of underutilized properties for productive use

* Market town assets to attract potential investors.

STEP is a state program that uses community coaching, leadership training, planning assistance and grants to help struggling small towns with economic renewal.

Fremont has received $25,000 for planning and technical assistance. Once the town develops a plan for economic development the state will provide $100,000 to implement it.

STEP is part of the state Rural Economic Development Center. Fremont was accepted into the program last June and has been moving through the organizational and planning stages since then.

The discussion has now turned more to strategy and possible projects.

The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 28, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Town Hall. The public is invited.

The N.C. Rural Economic Development Center is a private, nonprofit organization whose mission is to develop sound economic strategies that improve the quality of life in rural North Carolina, with a special focus on individuals with low to moderate incomes and communities with limited resources.