Hiring out-of-state company to create local jobs?

By Courtney Lane - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - An East Texas city is looking out of state for help. The City of Tyler has agreed to pay $75,000 to an out of state consulting group to come in and market what Tyler has to offer, attracting new businesses. That, in turn of course, would create new jobs. But why not hire a Texas company and will this be money well spent?

First of all, Tyler leaders say this is not a branding approach. Tom Mullins with the city's Economic Development Council, recalled the disaster Longview went through just a few years ago.

"They got a brand that two other cities already had from the same consulting group," said Mullins. "Yeah, we're not going that route...but you know Tyler has a brand. Tyler is known as the rose city, the rose capitol, the garden spot. Those are all positive images that we really don't feel we need to change. But we'll come up with some kind of a theme or some kind of a slogan that'll help market us."

Tyler Mayor Barbara Bass said they did look at local companies, but none offered the complete package like the Pennsylvania group.

"The track record they bring is just tremendous and we're expecting great results," said Bass.

"The city wanted someone with a combination of marketing experience and economic development strategic planning experience," said Mullins.

The consulting group will match and market Tyler with specific companies, based on previous studies like Tyler 21 and Vision 2010.

"What they're going to give us is a tool and it's up to us to take that information and go after the jobs to make the difference in our community," said Bass.

They say now is the time to act, to maintain a profitable future.

"Anytime you're in a flat economy like we are it's a perfect planning opportunity," said Bass. "That's when you really want to look at what your resources are, where you are and what you can do to do better."

"Sometimes you have to spend some money in order to generate the kind of results you want," said Mullins.

While the projected cost is $75,000, mayor Bass says $15,000 was raised through community sponsorships. Leaders expect the group to have an implementation plan around the end of September.

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