CEDS economic development consultants for the analytics and process required by EDA Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy planning. Economic development plans prepared to the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s guidelines, open up opportunities for federal funding.
Our work involves all aspects of taking CEDS economic planning from stakeholder workshops, economic sector analysis, SWOT-type analytics, and preparation of the form CEDS documents. Economic development plans per CEDS guidelines also require specific public noticing periods and opportunities for public comments. All local governments and sovereign tribal nations are familiar with these public processes. The multi-faceted “active” involvement of stakeholders of all kinds though, is unique to CEDS plan preparation.
An interesting opportunity for any CEDS program is the potential leveraging of other economic development programs already in place. In fact, the EDA guidelines insist upon a careful review of such existing local economic development initiatives. One relatively recent program of possible local synergy is the federal “opportunity zone” program. With the additional incentives provided by this separate program, there are an array of potential real estate investment “asset classes” that can be part of any CEDS plan.
Once the CEDS plan is approved by the local sponsoring organization and stakeholders, we can assist with program implementation. This can include identifying the slate of initial projects, establishing project feasibility, outreach to strategic partners and private developers, and assisting the program sponsor with promoting and monitoring results. Our work as CEDS economic development consultants can include participation in ongoing “results review” and program monitoring workshops with stakeholders.
About Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Plans
The CEDS process and resulting strategic plan encourages, engages, and propels a collaboration of available public and private sector players and resources. According to the U.S. Economic Development Administration, a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) is intended to “contribute to effective economic development in America’s communities and regions through a locally-based, regionally-driven economic development planning process. A CEDS is the result of a regionally-owned planning process designed to build capacity and guide the economic prosperity and resiliency of an area or region.”
So-called Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies (CEDS) are a program promulgated by the Public Works and Economic Development Act of 1965, As Amended (hereinafter, the “PWEDA”). Amendments to the PWEDA include those made pursuant to the Economic Development Administration Reauthorization Act of 2004. Section 302 of the PWEDA sets forth specific expectations for how CEDS plans are prepared.
The PWEDA states that “the goal of Federal economic development programs is to raise the standard of living for all citizens and increase the wealth and overall rate of growth of the economy by encouraging communities to develop a more competitive and diversified economic base. As the PWEDA and its various authorizations evolve, we believe there will also be a focus on so-called ESG Investing where additional due diligence factors are included in investment decisions. These ESG Investing sensibilities will only enhance the interest and collaboration of local stakeholders, and help to attract such participation.