The North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission recently hosted a comprehensive agenda, including an Economic Roundtable Discussion, with key government officials to develop a long-term economic competitiveness strategy for the region. The meeting was attended by Rick Siger, Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development; David Briel, Deputy Secretary of the Office of International Business Development; Carrie Lepore, Deputy Secretary of Tourism, and Mandy Book, Deputy Secretary of the Office of Business Financing and Workforce Development.
The visit began with two groups. One group focused on powder metals and Harwood’s businesses, showcasing the region’s technological advancements in these industries. The other group explored the tourism component, visiting locations such as the Benezette Hotel, the Bugling Bull, Elk Life Store, and the Wilds Sonshine Factory. These site visits highlighted the commission’s contributions to tourism funding across the region.
Later in the day, all participants gathered at the Elk Country Visitor Center for dinner, hosted by North Central. This dinner set the stage for the Economic Roundtable Discussion, where key stakeholders discussed the region’s success and the critical issues it still faces.
Jim Chorney, the executive director of North Central, expressed the significance of this event, stating, “This event represents a significant milestone in the Commission’s ongoing efforts to strengthen the economic foundation of North Central Pennsylvania and create a brighter future for our communities.”
During the roundtable discussion, the commission engaged in a productive dialogue with various stakeholders. The meeting highlighted the vital role of regional economic development and addressed topics such as accessible broadband, infrastructure, the importance of Pennsylvania Hardwoods in the region’s growth and prosperity, and the need for adaptation as the automotive landscape shifts toward electric vehicles.
This comprehensive agenda and collaboration with government officials demonstrate the commitment of the North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission to foster economic growth and development in the region. By addressing key issues and leveraging the region’s strengths, the commission aims to create a brighter future for North Central Pennsylvania and its communities.