Until the Utah Economic Development Corp. board of trustees decides on which five industries its economic development efforts will be centered, the types of jobs the organization wants to create won't be known.
Within the next few weeks, small teams of volunteers will zero in on what types of industries should be targeted for UEDC attention. The list started at 30 industries that might be compatible to the Salt Lake area, but that already has been reduced to 26 and later will be reduced to four of five.Earlier this week, UEDC officials announced a $7 million fund-raising program in the next five years with a goal of generating 44,000 jobs, but the types of jobs won't be known until the industries are selected.
In the past, economic development officials have been criticized for overemphasizing the attraction of new companies with their minimum wages or slightly higher than minimum wage jobs.
In addition to creating thousands of new jobs, UEDC's Target '94 plan has a goal of increasing the market for goods and services by $2.7 billion and attracting $3 billion in new capital investment.
According to a booklet outlining the UEDC five-year plan, $4.2 million of the $7 million will be spent on national and international development and $2.8 million will be spent on business retention and expansion activities.
In the business attraction and recruitment portion of the plan, UEDC officials want to target those kinds of businesses that have the best success quotients to relocate in Utah, develop a profile on each specific industry defining tax capacity, employee skill level, number of employers, environmental impact, natural resource and energy use and transportation needs; and design and implement a comprehensive marketing plan to reach selected targets.
To accomplish national and international marketing, UEDC wants to organize trips to other areas to meet with key executive in targeted industries; organize annual Utah hospitality days where suppliers of Utah's existing industries are brought in to review investment possibilities; and organize ambassador programs to send Utahns to other areas to contact executives of businesses previously expressing an interest in Utah.
Other aspects of this program are to organize a welcome program for employees being relocated to Utah for housing, education and medical services and work with the state in visiting international target areas.
The UEDC public relations program will include creating and placing display advertisements in economic development journals and industry publications; a direct mail campaign, joining certain trade professional associations; work with the state and Salt Lake International Airport to place advertising in the airport; make news announcements about new companies and expansion of existing companies, develop a media guide for UEDC members; and produce a video tape and make it available at every tourist destination point in the area and make it available to businesses.
In the area of business retention and expansion, the UEDC plan suggests annual visits to major employers and selected businesses, personal delivery of selected UEDC publications, survey companies to identify needs and potential problems and develop and publish a resource guide to identify local suppliers of goods and services.
The plan also calls for business liaison activities, helping business sell more services and products to government, help Utah buyers find resident sources of goods and services and help Utah companies find export possibilities.