Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

State Sets funds Criteria.(Final)

Byline: Diane Velasco Journal Staff Writer

Town Will Need A Business Plan

Local governments will have to meet certain requirements if they want to tap into state economic development funds and marketing.

The state program, called the Certified Communities Initiative, is aimed at helping communities attract or expand businesses, said Economic Development Secretary Rick Homans.

"Once a community is certified, it is easier to communicate its benefits to potential employers or to focus on other economic generators," Homans said Friday in Moriarty at the first meeting this year of the state Economic Development Commission.

In order to be certified by the state, communities must meet requirements that include:

* Setting up a local economic development organization;

* Developing a business plan;

* Completing an inventory of available land and buildings;

* Starting a program to help businesses stay or expand in the community;

* Earmarking up to 5 percent of the local gross receipts tax for economic development activity;

* Creating a formal "community profile" that paints a picture of everything the community has to offer. …

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