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Press Release

State of Oregon, regional partners pilot economic development partnership to improve efficiency, strengthen collaboration

August 26,2015 | By Ryan Frank, Business Oregon Communications Manager

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE // Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015

State of Oregon, regional partners pilot economic development partnership to improve efficiency, strengthen collaboration

The State of Oregon and four of Oregon’s largest private economic development organizations have signed a landmark agreement to improve business development coordination and align efforts to grow Oregon’s economy.

“To compete, Oregon needs a team approach to economic development that engages both the private and public sectors,” said Sean Robbins, director of Business Oregon, the state’s economic development agency. “This partnership extends our business development reach and leverages taxpayers’ dollars further. Oregonians will be better off because of it."

Under the pilot project, the state and its regional partners will work as one team to create jobs by helping existing Oregon businesses expand and recruiting new companies to our state. The partners will share office space, meet in-person regularly and develop ongoing communications through shared software tools. The groups will also coordinate state and regional marketing messages, develop joint strategies on company recruitments and expansions, and work together on international trade, foreign direct investment and economic development policy.

Combined, these private economic development organizations represent 11 Oregon counties, 127 cities and about more than two-thirds of the state’s population.

“The relationship between states and regions is critical in growing economies through jobs and investment,” said Janet LaBar, president and CEO of Greater Portland Inc. “GPI looks forward to working with Business Oregon to deliver improved outcomes for our communities and private-sector partners.”

Business Oregon will provide $100,000 ($25,000 per regional economic development organization) during the next two years to help offset expenses related to the increased cooperation. The partners in the agreement, which covers the 2015-17 budget period, are:

Business Oregon, State of Oregon
Economic Development for Central Oregon, Bend and the Central Oregon region (Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties)
Greater Portland Inc, Portland and the metropolitan region (including the Oregon counties of Yamhill, Columbia, Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington, and the Washington counties of Clark and Skamania)
Strategic Economic Development Corp., Salem and the Mid-Willamette Valley region (Marion, Polk and Yamhill counties)
Southern Oregon Regional Economic Development Inc, Medford and the Southern Oregon region (Jackson and Josephine counties)

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