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EDC's goal is to put local residents to work

September 14, 2007

Economic Development Commission

Address: 100 W. Washington St., Hagerstown

Executive director: Timothy R. Troxell

Phone: 240-313-2280

TDD/hearing impaired number: 240-313-2077

Web address: www.hagerstownedc.org




Every week, Timothy Troxell tries to sell Washington County.

As executive director of the Washington County Economic Development Commission, his job is to market the county's potential as a site for new or expanding business.

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Backing him is a 12-member board of directors and six ex-officio members, representing the county's government, its municipalities, local business and the community at large.

The commission's goal is, literally, to put Washington County to work.

"We're here to help anybody" who wants to expand or establish a business in Washington County, Troxell said.

The commission does, however, target specific industries in its marketing activities. Right now, the commission is trying to attract biotech industries as well as high-tech aviation navigation companies and advanced manufacturing companies, Troxell said.

"We're trying to bring in family-supporting jobs," that will "improve the quality of life for the average citizen of Washington County," he said.

To that end, Troxell said the commission tries to partner with other agencies, such as the Maryland Job Store and the education community to match business with Washington County's skilled work force.

Troxell's office keeps a matrix of all companies opening or expanding in Washington County as well as vacant buildings and properties available for industry use, he said.

In 2006, the commission announced 43 projects, which included both new and expanding businesses, Troxell said. Those projects represented $121 million in investment, 1,087 new jobs and 830,000 square feet of new construction.

By July, the numbers for 2007 looked promising, with 18 new projects representing an investment of more than $200 million with 680 anticipated new jobs and 2.4 million square feet of new construction so far.

EDC members serve three-year staggered terms and are appointed by the Washington County Commissioners. Members may be reappointed once.

The EDC can help companies that are considering moving to Washington County find sites, financing and employee training.

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