The Terrace Economic Development Authority is no longer.
At last night’s regular council meeting the city announced it is dissolving the institution and bringing its various functions into the city’s administration, a move which mayor Carol Leclerc says will save the city a significant sum from its annual community grants pool.
“It will save us about $165,000, and we will still have the corporate lands position, but I don’t think a wage has been decided yet,” she said, adding that cost saving was not the reason why the city made the move.
“We had an opportunity when our economic development officer who resigned his position at the same time as the corporate lands manager was retiring from the city and we took that opportunity to have a big picture look at how we want to do economic development, and we had a number of meetings, discussions, research done and decided we wanted to move to an in house model,” she said.
A release from the city says the contract with TEDA expires on Sept. 30.
A new, internal Economic Development officer position will be created. The person filling this role will combine tasks customary to the previous, external economic development officer role, however with the added duties of the corporate lands manager position.
The corporate lands position was created several years ago and was held by city official Herb Dusdal until he quit this winter to take a private sector job with Nechako Northcoast.
His main role was managing the city’s real estate portfolio, with the central piece being the Skeena Industrial Development Park.
“Making this change will enable us to firmly align the city’s economic development function with council’s vision to ensure Terrace’s economy continues to grow and diversify,” said Leclerc in a release.
“It will also improve the free flow of information between city departments related to economic development, and provide the business community and investors with a direct line to the city and council,” she continued.
Leclerc said it is too early to say what will happen with the building currently used by TEDA at the corner of Kalum St. and Lakelse Ave., a pioneer building converted into office space.
There will also be the question as to whom will host major events like Minerals North, which was organized by the TEDA in 2013.
“Council and administration will be working closely with the board and staff at TEDA as well as the Terrace and District Chamber of Commerce to ensure a smooth transition,” states the release.