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Twin Falls, ID - In 2017, twenty-six counties in Idaho had Federal disaster declarations due to flooding, landslides, and/or mudslides. Idaho is one of the nation’s most rural States. As such, its economy is heavily dependent upon agriculture, and is more susceptible to economic fluctuations. Coordinating State-wide economic development planning, including disaster resilience planning, is essential to sustain and grow Idaho’s economy. The State is also looking to develop more high-skill, high-wage jobs, as Idaho’s per capita income is only 80 percent of the nation’s, ranking 45th of all States. Idaho needed a strategy to help diversify and transition its economy from overreliance on resource-based industries, as well as bolstering its resilience to natural disasters and economic downturns.
In September 2017, EDA invested $95,000 in Partnership Planning funds to Region IV Development Association (RIVDA) to create a State-wide Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) for the State of Idaho. RIVDA and Idaho’s other Economic Development Districts will work with various local, State, Federal and community partners to develop and implement the CEDS.
The Idaho CEDS will reflect the views of a wide range of stakeholders, and help the State effectively strategize how to use its strengths to diversify its economy, grow innovation industries, and help create high-skill, high-wage jobs throughout the State. Implementation of the CEDS will provide increased job opportunities for its residents, help the State improve economic vitality and prepare for natural disasters and bolster its resilience.