Want to create an attractive and welcoming community? Guess what? It is good for the economy.
Beautification is the process of creating a positive community environment. These efforts might include improving landscape, cleaning up a vacant lot, a coat of paint, some festive flowers, and much more. While these efforts definitely lift community spirit, they are also good for the economy.
On a micro level, people are willing to pay higher prices, travel farther to, and shop for longer periods in what they perceive is a quality establishment. Beautification is known to help expand sales and increase the numbers of clients and how long they will shop in an area. It can also help reduce the stress of shopping, build community loyalty, and reduce crime. [1, 2]
On a macro level, beautification can raise property values—think of the attention a beautiful mural might garner for a nearby business, art displays that make you want to stroll (rather than bolt) through a shopping area, and the beauty of huge blooming baskets hanging from street lights. Getting things cleaned up and looking good shows a pride of ownership, pride of community, and builds community loyalty. Beauty is one of the most important factors in creating and sustaining community loyalty. 
Beautification can also attract and retain new businesses, new residents and workforce, and strengthen community spirit. But it can do something else, perhaps much more magical—it can keep kids who participate in community service both in school and achieving higher grades in school. [2, 3]
Many States require students to complete some type of community service activities before graduating. Research on the positive effects of community service programs date back to 1881 with the Red Cross. Students involved with community service programs, even in middle school, are more apt to volunteer in the future, have higher grade point averages, are more likely to graduate high school, and are happier. It is thought that students through community service and extracurricular activities develop both ethical values and personal knowledge (such as soft skills), and help them feel a part of the community.
Who would have thought that a beautification project could also help our youth succeed in school and improve the local economy? What a nice surprise!
1 Economic benefits of plants (https://ellisonchair.tamu.edu/economic-benefits-of-plants/)
2 Community Beautification Lifts Spirits, Property Values (https://www.useful-community-development.org/beautification.html )
3 The Effects of Community Service on the Academic Performance of Students at a Massachusetts Middle School, Thesis by Pauline F. Camara (https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/4f79/3287b5b90d7b892f576ea895a3c51aa78c15.pdf)
Coffee is more than just a personal stimulant—it is a whopping economic driver affecting millions of small growers and is the second-most sought after traded agricultural commodity in the world. Over 2.25 billion cups of coffee are consumed in the world every day.
Good thing that 9.5 million tons of coffee is produced each year.  Production numbers can be impacted by weather and other environmental events, and fuel prices.
Economic Impacts: The coffee industry provided a total economic impact of $225.2 billion. In 2015, the coffee industry was responsible for nearly 1.7M jobs in the U.S. economy alone and comprises 1.6 percent of the total U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Small independent coffee shops take in an estimated $12 billion in annual sales.  Convenience stores are also popular sales points with coffee being the#1 hot beverage of choice and generating 78 percent of sales within the hot dispensed beverages category.
History Tweaks: We may have never adopted coffee as our national morning beverage if the Boston Tea Party of 1773 hadn’t occurred. Many tea drinkers switched to coffee when King George III raised the tea taxes and never looked back. In the 17th century, coffee quickly replaced other breakfast beverages, namely beer and wine. 
Business History Corner: In the 17th century, coffee shops were popping up all over Europe. Specialized coffee shops, with their vibrant discussions and social opportunities helped launch many business ideas such as Lloyd's of London, which was dreamed up at the Edward Lloyd's Coffee House.
Coffee is more than just a cup of joe in the morning...it is a reason to celebrate. Raise your cup on September 29 and celebrate at your local coffee shop. Many coffee shops will be offering special discounts on September 29 – keep an eye out for a bargain! 
1 The Global Coffee Industry (https://globaledge.msu.edu/blog/post/55607/the-global-coffee-industry)
2 The WorldCounts (https://www.theworldcounts.com/counters/world_food_consumption_statistics/world_coffee_consumption_statistics)
3 The NCA USA Economic Impact Report, The economic impact of the coffee Industry (http://www.ncausa.org/industry-resources/economic-impact)
4 17 Coffee Consumption and Industry Sales Statistics (https://brandongaille.com/16-coffee-consumption-and-industry-sales-statistics/)
5 Economics of Coffee (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economics_of_coffee)
6 The History of Coffee (http://www.ncausa.org/about-coffee/history-of-coffee )
7 National Coffee Day (http://www.holidayscalendar.com/event/national-coffee-day/)
What information is collected in a census and how does it benefit us?
The 2020 Census has launched it’s first major field operation this month. The count will officially start in Toksook Bay, Alaska in January. Residents will be able to complete the census in a variety of ways (face-to-face interviews, online, by phone, and by paper).
The first census in 1790 was directed by Thomas Jefferson, and has been conducted every 10 years thereafter as required by the U.S. Constitution. In 1903 the Census Office became a permanent part of the new Department of Commerce and Labor.
Census numbers will be used to determine how many seats each State will hold in Congress. The count will also be used to calculate how to equitably split more than $675 billion in Federal funds that are distributed back to the states and communities for health care, jobs, schools, roads, and business.
Find out all kinds of information about your community, economics, and trends at https://www.census.gov!
But there is much more to this gigantic numerical collection process. The Census is charged with finding our information about the population, places, and the economy. This information helps identify and analyze trends and is used in many ways by many companies, government entities, and non-profit organizations. For instance, Census numbers can inform cities of new roads, schools, job training centers, elderly care, and emergency services.
For instance, you can find out the total population, how many are with a potential workforce age, average cost of a home, average income, average education, etc. It is then possible to compare all those numbers over time. For instance, the Census is looking at measuring E-Commerce. By looking at the quarterly results one can see sales for online shopping gradually increasing.
 U.S. Census Bureau Announces the Start of First Major Field Operation for 2020 Census, https://www.census.gov/newsroom/press-releases/2019/ad-can-launch.html
To find out more about the Census, go to: https://www.census.gov.
To verify a legitimate contact go to: https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/surveyhelp.html
Quick facts - census preliminary facts, https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/PST045218
Overview: About the Census, U.S. Census Bureau at a Glance, https://www.census.gov/about/what/census-at-a-glance.html#mission
Opportunity Zones (OZ) were created to help unlock capital gain monies and to encourage investment of those monies in low income areas. There are four Oregon South Coast OZ tracts that are located in Coos (has two small ones), Douglas, and Curry Counties.
South Coast Oregon tracts have poverty rates ranging from 32 percent down to 15 percent. The average poverty rate in Oregon is nearly 16 percent. All tracts have lower household income, home ownership, and rent. Most also have high poverty and unemployment rates, and a severe rent burden (estimated based on state tract averages and eligible non-designated tracts listed in ).
The money used to support OZ development comes primarily from private investors. Investors are required to participate for specific time periods to get the best returns. Once they meet those requirements, investor may be able to defer income taxes and reduce tax liability. Investors are also able to reduce or potentially eliminate capital gain taxes from anywhere in the country for several years. For a large business this could amount to significant savings. [1 2 3]
To see these tracts on a map and some of the meta-data behind the designation point your browser to SCDC’s www.scdcinc.org/incentives and scroll down to Federal Incentives and near the end of that section you will see Interactive GIS maps for four sites. Scroll out to see all OZ designated and non-designated sites and click on a tract to get more information. Tract numbers include Coos 41011000300, 41011000504, Douglas 41019010000, and Curry 4105950100.
Gold Beach, Oregon
For more information about OZ and other incentives on the southern Oregon coast contact the South Coast Development Council, Inc., firstname.lastname@example.org or 541-888-7003. Business Oregon has a very good description of Opportunity Zones at https://www.oregon4biz.com/Opportunity-Zones/.
1 Opportunity Zones in Oregon (https://opportunitydb.com/location/oregon/)
2 What are Opportunity Zones and How do They Work (https://fundrise.com/education/blog-posts/what-are-opportunity-zones-and-how-do-they-work)
3 The Obscure Tax Program That Promises to Undo America's Geographic Inequality (https://www.citylab.com/equity/2018/04/can-opportunity-zones-save-the-country/558266/)
4 SCDC Website www.scdcinc.org/incentives.html
Originally the “Think globally, act locally” slogan was used to get people to consider the health of the planet and take action in their own communities.
These ‘grass root’ ideas were originally suggested in 1915 by Patrick Geddes. Geddes was a Scottish biologist, sociologist, philanthropist, and pioneering town planner. He was responsible for introducing regional architecture, and made significant contributions to working with the environment.
Geddes basic concepts can be used to think about building regional economic capacity. For instance, considering how economic (versus environmental) changes can impact the health and vitality of local communities, the value of planning concepts, and the need to consider the whole environment when making changes. It would be easy to imagine that he even considered what we now consider to be Business Retention/Recruiting and Expansion (or BRE) activities in his town planning.
Think globally, interact regionally, and act locally. 
For instance, in a plan, we might compare the risks of having only one large employer in a rural community versus several medium-sized employers. In total, there could be the same number of jobs, income, and other measures. The potential impact of losing the one large employer could be devastating compared to the loss of one medium business. Many of us have seen this scenario play out as the forestry industry slowed down and mills closed in the early 90’s. The risk of failure is still very real with only 4 percent of U.S. businesses surviving beyond 10 years. 
Having a diversified group of employers reduces the potential impacts and may increase the possibility of growth and expansion over time. For instance, each of the medium-sized companies could potentially grow larger over time and employ new recruits.
Building economic capacity is more than just recruiting/retaining employers. It is also about helping communities become more competitive. The process of being more competitive may include infrastructure improvements, attracting skilled workforce, networking, networking, technical assistance, and much more.
If a community lacks something....they will need to compete with other communities to get those services...
Why is this important? Because if a community lacks something, say medical services, they will need to compete with other communities to get those services. The likelihood of success is greater when an entire region, and not just one community, can network and leverage their resources and thus be seen as ‘greater than the sum of its parts.’
New businesses and workers will look beyond a rural community to nearby regional resources. Demonstrating a strong level of collaboration, coordination, and support across our region can do a lot to mitigate what our individual communities might currently lack. At this point, building economic capacity is one of our best strategies for creating and building a thriving and diversified business environment--exactly what we need to protect and sustain our high quality of life.
1 Wikipedia, “Think globally, act locally” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Think_globally,_act_locally)
2 “One minute guide to economic development for remote and rural small towns” (http://www.globenet.org/archives/web/2006/www.globenet.org/horizon-local/perso/guiderur.html)
3 “10 Reasons Why Good Customer Service Is Your Most Important Metric,” (https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/284799)
There are compelling arguments on both sides of the minimum wage issue.
House democrats approved legislation recently that would raise the Federal minimum wage to $15. The Federal minimum wage has not raised in 10 years and currently sits at $7.25 an hour ($15,080 a year) and $2.13 an hour for those employees receiving tips. House approves 
Many States have been gradually raising their minimum wage rates for years. Many have gone above the current Federal minimum. A large proportion have developed different pay adjustment strategies such as links to the annual costs of living, rules related to number of employees or annual sales, and plans to increase the wage over time. 
Cities, communities, and companies are also known for setting their own minimum wages. Several large population centers (New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, to name a few) have a minimum wage. Amazon, Whole Foods, Target Costco, and Bank of America also have a minimum wage standard. 
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) enacted in 1938 protects workers by setting minimum wage standards, overtime pay, recordkeeping and youth labor. The rate does not apply to every type of job and unfortunately was not index to inflation. The first minimum wage rate was set at $0.25 per hour.
Several sources estimate that if the Federal wage rate had kept pace with inflation that it would be just over $21 an hour today. 
A nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office report estimated that more than 30 million workers would receive larger paychecks pushing more than 1 million workers over the poverty level.  The poverty level in Oregon is $12,490 for a single person, and $16,910 for two. 
Slightly over half of today’s workers aged 16-24 receive a minimum wage suggesting that this group would receive a greater proportion of the increased wages but may also lose the greatest number of jobs as it is harder for low-skilled workers to find and keep jobs.  The Budget Office estimated that between 1-3 million jobs could be lost. 
There could be other impacts. A raise might entice some potential candidates back into the workforce this could include recently retired workers, or workers looking for part-time jobs. On the other side, the raise could also fire increased development in the use and return on investment for automation development.
It will be interesting to watch how this debate turns out.
1 House approves $15 minimum wage, Senate prospects are dim (https://news.yahoo.com/house-set-approve-phased-15-144233126.html)
2 2019 Federal and State Minimum Wage Rates (https://www.thebalancecareers.com/2018-19-federal-state-minimum-wage-rates-2061043)
3 Minimum-wage pro-con (https://minimum-wage.procon.org/).
4 What is poverty? (https://www.ocpp.org/poverty/2018-poverty-guidelines/)
Oregon is attracting new residents from all over the U.S. and why not? We have an amazing environment to live and work in, moderate climate, affordable housing compared to several other states, and no income tax. Oregon is a perfect place to escape high taxes, traffic, natural disasters, and adopt a lifestyle that incorporates a high quality of life and family. 
1. POPULATION GROWTH: Our population growth has been fairly steady over the last several years due to net migration and not because of natural births. Net migration in Oregon amounts to somewhere around 41,000-54,000 people each year. [2, 3, 4]
Most, but not all, cities on the southern Oregon coast are growing and have been doing so since 2013-2014 when population numbers dipped. Florence has had a steadily increasing population since the 1900s. 
2. WHERE FROM: Figures range from 30-40 percent of the total number of migrants each year are from California. A relatively high number (one in six) were born in Oregon, moved to California, and are now returning. There are also a few thousand from Hawaii, and a spattering of people from lots of ‘elsewheres.’ 
3. WHERE THEY LAND: We compete with other Oregon communities, like Portland and southwestern Washington, to attract potential workers. About 25 percent of the migrants end up in Portland and along the I-5 corridor. The bulk scatter in more statewide population patterns.
Recent migration numbers show that the Oregon coast is becoming more attractive to California migrants.  Even small increases in numbers can put a burden on existing infrastructure such as water, sewer, and other utilities, and education, medical, and transportation needs. 
4. WHAT THEY BRING: People most likely to migrate are between 25 and 34, often bringing higher education and labor skills. Many are ready to settle down to raise a family, kick their careers in high gear, have kids, and buy a house. They are often called "root setters" and are often seeking a lifestyle change that often includes having family near, and increased recreation options [2, 6]
5. HOW TO KEEP THEM: One suggestion is to better target the root setters through conditions, amenities, and opportunities. Many of our cities have ‘Best Place’ awards, interesting careers, and dynamite recreational opportunities. Many communities are working hard to improve medical, educational, and housing options as more migrants arrive.
Maybe our challenge is how to more effectively communicate our stories about why they should move here. After all the saying goes, “If you build it, they will come.” If they will come for a baseball field, we shouldn’t have any problems... 
1 Top 10 reasons to move to Oregon (https://moving.tips/city-guides/top-10-reasons-to-move-to-oregon/)
2 Southwestern Oregon’s Population Growth, 2000-2018 (https://www.qualityinfo.org/-/southwestern-oregon-s-population-growth-2000-2018)
3 World Population Review (http://worldpopulationreview.com/us-cities/florence-or-population/) used for a number of cities.
4 People Continue to Move to Oregon, but Locals Aren’t Breeding (https://www.wweek.com/news/2018/11/19/people-continue-to-move-to-oregon-but-locals-arent-breeding/)
5 When Californians Move to Oregon, They’re More Likely to Move to the Coast (https://www.wweek.com/news/2019/07/13/when-californians-move-to-oregon-theyre-more-likely-to-move-to-the-coast/)
6 Migration to Oregon, an Update (https://oregoneconomicanalysis.com/2019/07/11/migration-to-oregon-an-update/)
7 Oregon ranked among top U.S. moving destinations in 2018 with strong economy, job growth (https://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/2019/01/04/oregon-top-moving-destinations-2018-strong-economy-job-growth/2464977002/
8 Where Does the Phrase “If you Build it, They will come” come from? (https://www.quora.com/Where-does-the-phrase-If-you-build-it-they-will-come-come-from-What-does-it-mean) From the movie "Field of Dreams."
Just like any other trade, economics has its own language. The commonly used term ‘multiplier’ may seem mysterious and not something you might even notice, but it is an important tool that reveals much about business and our economy.
A ‘multiplier’ is simply a way to estimate and compare the economic impacts, such as the impact of adding or subtracting a business, jobs/services, goods, tasks, etc. The multiplier amount is typically represented in the form of a decimal (i.e. like 1.4). Sometimes, the multiplier may be an aggregate of related processes, phases, or relationships, or even a negative number.
These multiplier decimals are created through studies using fairly complicated bean-counter techniques which may apply to a specific point in time and place. The end result is often used to generate a numerical report or perhaps a summary statement similar to “For every $1 spent in tourism, the region has seen an increase of $Y in capital expenses and $Z in payroll.”
Let's take manufacturing. It was reported that in the fourth quarter 2018, that manufacturers contributed $2.38 TRILLION to the U.S. economy, accounting for 11.4 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. In terms of a multiplier, their summary statement would look something like "For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.82 is added to the economy" which is one of the highest multiplier effects of any economic sector supporting the claim that four employees are hired for every one worker in manufacturing. 1/
We can measure the value of manufacturing activities and justify why it might be a high priority business to attract to our community. We also know that, like other businesses, they will need qualified talent to survive. It is estimated that over the next decade, 4.6 million manufacturing jobs will be needed and many of these could go unfilled due to a skills gap. The lack of talent provides an opportunity for future employees and a risk. A persistent skill shortage could cost $4.5 trillion in reduced output. 1/
At this point we can compare these figures to other businesses and activities and prioritize for the types of businesses we would want to attract and retain. Multipliers help us identify activities that can generate the most 'bang for the buck,' how much an activity contributes to the economy, and start the discussion over what is needed to support their continued success. It also let's us measure the impact in a community when a business is loss (a negative multiplier pops up).
Multipliers create a standardized way to analyze economic trends and performance over time and start the conversation of workforce development opportunities. Amazing!
1/ "Facts about Manufacturing" at https://www.nam.org/facts-about-manufacturing/
Effective workforce-development programs will be a crucial part of US efforts to fuel economic growth, lead on innovation, and compete on the global stage." 1/
Don’t confuse workforce development with workplace training. The two are very different. Workplace training is valuable for helping existing employees succeed. Workforce development is focused on getting those potential workers to the table.
Why worry about Workforce development?
Can your small business stay in business without additional talent for the next 10 years? Chances are you can’t. Even if everybody is healthy, there are always unexpected events that can turn a profitable, well run business topsy-turvey.
Technology is automating low-skilled and easily automated tasks changing the skill levels of new recruits and existing employees alike. Technology will drive change in the job market, in other words, 65 percent of today’s primary school students will hold jobs that don’t exist today.1/
If there are no family wage jobs, our quality of life will degrade. Who will be there to fix the plumbing, care for the aged and nurse the ill, build the homes, or pump the gas (it is Oregon after all and we are not allowed to pump our own!).
Competition for workers will continue to increase not only locally but for pulling potential workers outside of our area that may be willing to accept lower-paying city jobs, because even those appear to pay better than well-paying local jobs. Of course, the cost and quality of living is also different but that is often conveniently ignored.
Some jobs will be very difficult to fill or automate. This can be due to the requirements, pay, benefits, or other problems such as lack of workforce housing or childcare, and a degraded infrastructure (such as hospitals, transportation, and education). It is interesting to note that many jobs already are in the hard to fill category which suggests that a certain percentage of these jobs may never be filled. It has been estimated that 50 percent of workforce activities could be automated, but few (around 15%) have been. Yet. It is estimated that by 2030, 30 percent of the US workforce will need to change jobs or upgrade skills significantly to stay employed due to automation.1/
How Workforce Development Helps
Our goal is to help strengthen the South Coast workforce pipeline as part of the South Coast Development Council business retention/recruitment and expansion vision.
Without available labor, businesses will not thrive or come here. Yes, a workforce pipeline currently exists, but we hear that business are not getting the number and quality of candidates they need. With low unemployment rates, we are generally in a position where there are more jobs than qualified candidates to fill them. Because we are rural and because the populations in many coastal cities are dwindling, we may feel this shortage more acutely. The lack of skilled labor could degrade our quality of life.
Potential employees may look elsewhere if they are not able to find employment quickly or at least find resources that will help them find a job. Because of the rural environment, many of the resources are fragmented across several small organizations that are spread across the regional landscape.
A collaborative process is needed to actively cultivate the next generation of talent and strengthen the existing pipeline. This includes connecting business and educators, learning best practices, and figuring out how to foster an ongoing development program. Development might include ensuring that young prospective hires know how to write a resume, or dress appropriately for a job interview. It also includes training and exposure to different types of jobs and skills. And finally, it includes a certain amount of competition between businesses to hire the right candidate, and between candidates to put their best foot forward.
The implementation of the McMinnville Works Internship program at the South Coast Development Council in June is the start of that process. The training will help businesses learn the best practices for hosting an intern, and will be able to talk about ways to continue to improve our workforce pipeline.
Is there a way to measure our success? Maybe. Maybe our population will gradually increase as more of our local families stay intact longer, rather than losing all of our young ones to other communities. Maybe we can fill quality jobs with quality candidates faster. Maybe we can raise the quality of life here and make sure that critical jobs get filled.
What’s the value of a more resilient and adaptable workforce, stronger communities, and accelerated economic growth? Our future.
Reference: 1/ “Creating an effective workforce system for the new economy” July 2018 by Chen, Wan-Lei, et al. at https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/public-sector/our-insights/creating-an-effective-workforce-system-for-the-new-economy
A Goldilocks economy occurs when growth is, like the childhood story, neither too hot or too cold. Too hot of an economy creates inflation; too cold creates a recession.
To create Goldilocks economy there needs to be enough gradual expected growth and enough demand to keep the economy humming. This is not a stagnant balance. Ideally growth over time would range between 2-3 percent, as measured against the gross domestic product (GDP).
Kimberly Amadeo updated an article April 28, 2019 that explains past Goldilocks economies and the actions taken to help create this rare healthy economic climate. Actions cited often include legislation that raised taxes or lowered costs, or spurred the economy in other ways (such as limiting government spending, war, health care, etc.). Why might out economy now be a Goldilocks? We have solid economic growth without inflation.
If you are thinking about starting a new business and want to know more about our economic environment you may want to read more at: https://www.thebalance.com/goldilocks-economy-definition-causes-effects-3305932 Very interesting and readable article published in late April, 2019, that includes a lot of links to supportive information that help explain various terms, calculations, and theories.
Business Recruiting Retention, & Expansion
We are all about Business recruiting/retention and expansion. But like any other topic, economics has some unique language such as Multipliers and Unicorns. The purpose of this Blog is to help clarify that language and concepts.