A fairly new program to assist rural communities was explained on Wednesday to business leaders and the Churchill Economic Development Authority at its monthly breakfast.
Jeff Brigger and Cheree Boteler from NV Energy’s Economic Development Department gave an overview of the company’s Nevada Site Locator, which provides a comprehensive database of buildings and land available in Nevada. Brigger, the department’s economic development executive, also presented information on how NV Energy supports local economic development authorities throughout rural Nevada.
The site locator breaks down available real estate in each Nevada county.
“The database houses many industrial and office properties throughout Nevada,” said Boteler, the department’s web marketing specialist. “We did this because there was nothing like this.”
Boteler presented an overview for more than 50 people who attended the breakfast meeting. She showed the Churchill County page that contained information on the labor force, quality of life, utilities and a business overview.
“We’re constantly updating with CEDA to make sure this information is up to date,” she said.
Rachel Dahl, CEDA’s executive director, said NV Energy’s Economic Development Department has been a voice for rural Nevada.
“When they were Sierra Pacific Power, they were helping 20 years ago when I worked for Shirley Walker (CEDA director),” Dahl said.
Dahl said NV Energy has helped CEDA tremendously, and representatives are there to help with any question, concern or information.
“They use industry date on their website, and I know I can rely on them,” Dahl said.
Boteler showed attendees how a search produced seven available properties for sale in Churchill County. According to Boteler, real estate brokers or developers provide the information for the NV Energy site locator website. In turn, the site refers prospective buyers back to the broker or developer.
Because of the locator’s technology, Boteler selected a building that is for sale on North Maine Street and then used the map feature to show the building, its location and the adjacent area.
“You can also download a report and see information for each area,” she said, adding the business tool allows people to see existing firms in the area.
Brigger said the website is marketed nationally and receives about 11,000 visits monthly. He said NV Energy works with a site consultant to look for information.
“This (site locator) gives us another chance to get Nevada attributes out to a national level,” he said. “If you’re a business, you can find out what’s going on around you.”
Brigger said the Rural Partners Program, for example, is designed to increase the rural communities and their economic development authorities like CEDA.
“The program is designed to provide funding opportunities … like to CEDA,” he said, citing that funding could be focused on redevelopment.
Although the program is designed for economic development agencies, Brigger said the information gleaned from the program is also good for the community to know and use. NV Energy economic development representatives have also visited out-of-state businesses to answer their questions about relocating to another state such as Nevada. For example, Brigger said a team visited about eight agriculture-related businesses in California that could be a better fit in Nevada.
“This could be an effective program for CEDA to find companies that are a good fit for your community,” Brigger pointed out. “The tools are free, and we’re here to support economic development.”
Furthermore, Dahl said the new rural program has been helpful and NV Energy has been willing to pay for training or take CEDA staff with them on recruiting trips.
“They’re so wonderful to work for,” Dahl said.
NV Energy’s Economic Development website page is https:www.nvenergy.com/business/economicdeveloipment/index.cfm and click on the Nevada Site Locator logo; or go directly to the Nevada Site Locator at http://www.fastfacility.com/nvenergy/