GALLIPOLIS — The Gallia County Economic Development Office was recently awarded with AEP Ohio’s LEAP grant in the hopes of spurring economic movement.
According to Gallia Economic Development Director Melissa Clark, her office was awarded with $4,660 to be put towards a client management database for two years.
“The LEAP grant stands for local economic assistance,” said Clark. “We have used this funding in the past. Some of the most recent were when we did an aerial video with LEAP funding. Last year, we received funding to site due-diligence studies on our Phase II site as part of our authentication process (at the Dave Evans Industrial Park). We’re in the process of finishing up those last two studies now.”
Clark said AEP had assisted in funding projects the county might not normally have been able to fund through grants.
“We are going to purchase a CRM system,” said Clark,” a customer relationship management program. It’s called Executive Pulse and it will help with project tracking. We do business retention and expansion visits. Any kind of monitoring with projects and organization with contacts, reporting and metrics on the back-end, it will help a lot more with organization and keeping everything in one place…It will all be in one system and help streamline some of the activities we’re doing.”
Clark said the program is geared specifically for economic development offices.
The office previously received a Local Economic Advancement Program grant award of $5,000 to assist in the development of an aerial video of marketable industrial properties and highlights of the Gallia County community. The content was incorporated into an already existing marketing plan to be shared with site consultants and business leaders to display a virtual tour of the community.
That same video would eventually be recognized with an Economic Development Marketing Award.
“By investing in new workforce and economic development programs locally, we hope to spur job creation and opportunities for the communities we serve,” said Tim Wells, manager of economic and business development for AEP Ohio.”
The AEP Ohio LEAP grant promotes the creation and retention of manufacturing, investment and jobs in Ohio. Since 2001, AEP Ohio has awarded over 225 grants and invested over a million dollars in grant funding.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2103.