City Works With Chamber to Focus on Economic Development

INDEPENDENCE, Mo – The Independence City Council approved the formation of the Independence Economic Development Partnership on Wednesday, Nov. 9. This will effectively make the Independence Economic Development Council part of the day-to-day functions of the Independence Chamber of Commerce.  
“This change allows us to ensure we are working to enhance our local economic development efforts with real and manageable goals,” Mayor Rory Rowland said. “We look forward to a more efficient and effective economic development program that will meet the needs and goals of our changing community, economy, job demands, and region.”
This conversation began in June 2022 with a Council resolution directing the City Manager to consult with the EDC and Chamber to solicit proposals for economic development services. The Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors met in October. At this time, they approved a concept that envisioned a contract for services between the City of Independence and the Chamber of Commerce for economic development services. This concept closely mirrors the original proposal put forward at the June 21, 2022, City Council meeting in Resolution 6817, prior to that resolution being amended. After review and discussion, the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors voted to accept this proposal with direction to have the Chamber of Commerce President finalize the contract for services with the City Manager.
Key provisions of this new contract include:
  • A division of the Chamber known as the Independence Economic Development Partnership (IEDP) will operate as a public/private partnership. It’s focus and purpose will be promoting the economic welfare and growth of the City.
  • The effectiveness of the economic development program will be measured through data in the following areas:
    • Total number of business licenses issued annually
    • Total number of annual business license renewals
    • Total commercial permit valuation
    • Total capital investment
    • Total number of new jobs added and jobs retained
  • This contract will be for two years with three one-year renewal options.
The full background and supporting documents for this resolution can be found here.