2012-03-22 / Business

I-69 Trade Corridor NMDC elects officers

GENESEE COUNTY —The I-69 International Trade Corridor Next Michigan Development Corporation (NMDC) elected officers at a corporation board meeting March 15.

The meeting, which took place at Bishop International Airport, was for the recently designated NMDC that includes Genesee, Lapeer, Shiawassee and St. Clair counties.

The board elected Margaret McAvoy of Shiawassee County as chair, Dale Kerbyson of the City of Lapeer in Lapeer County as vice chair, Paul Brake of the City of Grand Blanc in Genesee County as treasurer and Jason Hami of the City of Marysville in St. Clair County as secretary.

The I-69 Corridor NMDC will be governed by a board consisting of members from the participating governments and will include one member from each governmental unit.

In addition to the customary authority exercised by a public corporation, the I-69 Corridor board will be authorized to recommend various tax incentives to prompt businesses to grow or establish a new location within the NMDC territory. The Next Michigan Development Act allows the NMDC, on a project-by-project basis, to recommend a Renaissance Zone, real and personal property tax exemptions, and other tax credits to qualifying businesses.

The I-69 NMDC covers the four counties, including 33 municipalities, major transportation assets such as Bishop International Airport, Canadian National and CSX railways, the Blue Water Bridge and a number of major freeways along the corridor such as I-69, I-75, I-94 and U.S. 23.

According to Tim Herman, CEO of the Genesee Regional Chamber of Commerce this board meeting is the first step in bringing new opportunities and jobs to the region.

“One of the first steps to ensure corporate effectiveness is to elect a governing body,” said Herman. “With the election of officers and a structure now in place, the partners are fully prepared to start marketing the NMDC and bringing new investment and jobs to the region.”

The MEDC’s Michigan Strategic Fund approved the I-69 NMDC designation in February. As an NMDC, the I-69 Corridor can now offer economic incentives to businesses that utilize multiple forms of transportation. The Corridor will benefit from marketing Bishop Airport, major freeways, the Blue Water Bridge, CSX and Canadian National rails, as well as several water ports to businesses that are engaged in international multi-modal commerce.

Janice Karcher, Vice President of Economic Development for the Regional Chamber says Thursday’s meeting represents an opportunity to set the structure for the board to move forward.

“Now that we have the board leadership in place we can leverage additional tools and incentives to make things happen in the region,” said Karcher. “I am pleased that our newly elected leadership team brings a wealth of experience and a collaborative spirit to the work of the NMDC. It was a strong sense of teamwork and community that helped us win this designation and as we move forward with this partnership that same effort will help us bring jobs and growth to the region.” — G.G.

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