CEDC is continuously evaluating economic development priorities and identifying a handful of strategic initiatives that are especially important to the County’s economic health. Current strategic initiatives include:
Columbia County Broadband:
CEDC is Columbia County’s designated broadband coordinator and the lead partner, among many stakeholders, working to address the County’s underserved communities. In recent years, CEDC has commissioned a study on the County’s broadband infrastructure, engaged with telecommunications companies and the state government as a core stakeholder during mergers, and spread information and awareness about state and federal grant programs that Columbia County has taken advantage of. High-speed internet access is critical to the education and quality of life for Columbia County residents, and CEDC will continue to work with partners across the County in the coming years to ensure that steady progress is made toward delivering broadband to currently underserved households.
CEDC has helped secure millions of dollars to expand broadband access through Federal, State, and private sources. As of July, 2021, CEDC is commissioning a study to further analyze gaps in broadband accessibility to prepare for anticipated future funding opportunities.
Ensuring that Columbia County has adequate wastewater treatment and sewer infrastructure is critical to future growth in the County. CEDC has assisted with state grant applications to improve infrastructure in the county in recent years, and will continue to monitor vital infrastructure systems and state programs to identify opportunities to secure funding for upgrades.
Workforce and Education:
CEDC identified workforce and education as a strategic pillar in its 2016 Strategic Plan. The modern workforce requires new strategies for educating, training, and retraining workers with a skillset that enables them to flourish in the 21st century. To facilitate dialogues on how to achieve this, CEDC has created a Board-level Workforce and Education that will oversee initiatives that will contribute to attracting a skilled, adaptable, and inclusive workforce.
CEDC has worked with partners on building a Hudson River Skywalk that will link the Olana State Historic Site in Greenpoit to the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Greene County. This project will add to Columbia County’s strengths in recreation, culture, and tourism.
One of Columbia County’s biggest strategic advantages is the landscape and the recreational opportunities that it provides. CEDC has worked with other key partners to advocate and seek funding sources for the expansion of the Rail Trail, which allows residents and tourists to explore the County in a variety of ways.
Columbia County Business Support and Financial Assistance