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October 1, 2013

State economic development director visits Logansport

Community leaders met with Doden to discuss development.

Community leaders came together Monday to talk economic development in Cass County with Eric Doden, president of the Indiana Economic Development Corp.

The meeting was part of Doden’s desire to partner with community leaders around the state. He told the group gathered that their ability to lead is key. Community leaders — including city and county councilman, county commissioners and others — need to be able to work together and have a deep commitment to their community, he said.

Among those attending the roundtable were Logansport Mayor Ted Franklin; Deanna Crispen, Cass County Community Foundation; Joyce Mayhill, United Way of Cass County; Paul Hartman, Logansport Municipal Utilities; and Joe Buck, city councilman.

Buck discussed the need for vocational education opportunities in town. He also discussed how his children and grandchildren were able to stay in the area, but there needs to be a focus to get jobs in Logansport and Cass County so people are able to stay here.

Doden agreed, saying it’s an issue he’s seen in other smaller communities. However, he added, Logansport is ideally located, having access to several four-lane highways.

”Indiana needs some humble swagger,” Doden said. “We need to promote ourselves and figure out a way to market to young people who might have moved away from home.”

Other concerns brought to the table were the state incentives for small communities wanting a spec building and the need to connect networks to businesses to help the economy overall.

Having already attended 24 roundtable discussions across Indiana, Doden said these are concerns shared by other smaller communities.

His goal, he said, is to continue to work with communities to help solve them.

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