Economic Development Conference Focuses on Resilience

This article was published on: 09/20/2019

Viewpoint Column by Doug McKinney, NCRPC Executive Director

You know you are in downtown Denver when each evening fire trucks roll by every hour and hints of smoke are in the air at the pedestrian level. I was in Denver recently for a regional director’s conference facilitated by the Economic Development Administration. Forums occurred whereby regions were able to share what services they provide and how development occurs for new or different offerings. The conference is an opportunity to learn from peers.

Some of the most recent NCRPC developments I shared at the conference included nuisance reduction/abatement, housing down payment assistance, food system assessment and unmanned aircraft system research. Notably, NCKCN remains the first and only not-for-profit Internet service provider started and still operated by a regional development organization.

Credit was given to staff, board and partner involvement for all that the NCRPC and its affiliates offer. In addition to the more recent developments, the core services remain solid facets of this regional development organization that was begun in 1972 by active leaders with vision for future collaborations.

Economic resilience was a theme of the conference, especially in light of disaster recovery. Being prepared for disaster — be it cyber, fire or water related — remains important. The ability to recover and build back better when challenges arise is critical for our communities to thrive.

Finally, the Census 2020 is near and vitally important to places and people in Kansas. Communities that prepare and support the count are likely to see beneficial results. Kansas Health Foundation is supporting this with a promotional campaign. The League of Kansas Municipalities has received a grant award from KHF through which it will provide assistance to cities in Kansas to aid in census accuracy. To learn more, visit the website at

As always, contact NCRPC for technical assistance with this or other needs. Safe journeys.

This article appeared in the September 2019 NCRPC Newsletter.