State’s new business-friendly certification gets mixed reviews

September 16

State's new business-friendly certification gets mixed reviews

The LePage administration's business-friendly certification eludes 10 of the 24 communities that applied in the first two rounds.

By Kelley Bouchard
Staff Writer

Others say the certification program's focus on being business-friendly ignores other critical aspects of successful economic development.

In addition to having sensible regulations, communities must take steps to preserve precious resources, such as historic downtowns and open spaces, said Nancy Smith, executive director of GrowSmart Maine, a nonprofit that promotes economic growth, resource protection and community revitalization.

Municipalities also must have policies that encourage innovation to ensure economic vitality in a global marketplace and that forge partnerships among government agencies, nonprofits and private companies, Smith said.

"The (LePage) administration has recognized a piece of what's needed to promote economic development," Smith said. "I hope for each of these communities, being business-friendly is just one piece of an effective economic development program."  Read more…

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