In 1989, the Zanesville-Muskingum County Chamber of Commerce created the Muskingum Industrial Growth Committee (MIG) to act as a conduit for private investment in the economic future and development of Muskingum County. As the representative of the business community on development issues, the Chamber used MIG to give focus to its efforts to generate resources and work in concert with the Port Authority, which was also created in 1989, and other governmental agencies on economic development.
The Chamber Board of Directors at that time firmly stated its belief in the need for Chamber involvement in economic development and private sector investment in local development initiatives. Yet, the Board also desired to avoid factions and competition within the community in regard to economic development. Therefore, a development partnership was established with the Port Authority providing public sector resources and leadership in pursuit of economic development supported strongly by the Chamber through MIG. A comprehensive joint economic development plan was adopted by the two organizations to give structure and direction to the community’s efforts.
Beginning in 1989, 13 local companies and individuals pledged three years of funding to the MIG program. Since then, the commitment and the number of contributors have expanded to include as many as 20 participants. The funds have been employed in cooperation with the Port Authority, and a work plan and budget based on the original economic development plan is each year approved by the members and implemented by Chamber staff.
In 1998, ten years after its formation, MIG adopted a new name that would better represent the broad development mission of the program. Thus, the MIG members adopted Muskingum Growth Partnership as their new name, and the program continues to fulfill its mission as the private sector vehicle for investment in economic development.
Investors – 2016
Visionary - $5,000 & above.
CENTURY NATIONAL BANK
GENESIS HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
Champion - $3,000 to $4,999
THE COMMUNITY BANK
Partner - $500 to $2,999
GUERNSEY-MUSKINGUM ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE
WHIZ MEDIA GROUP
NORTH VALLEY BANK
RANKIN & RANKIN INSURANCE
The Muskingum Growth Partnership has provided private sector support that has helped make the area’s development achievements possible. Here are just a few examples of accomplishments that MGP has participated in over the years:
Business Attraction Activities
- Muskingum Growth Partners recent accomplishment ECO Park mailing to Site Selectors
- Advertisements, brochures and other marketing pieces to attract new businesses
- Direct mail piece on MRC project
- Direct mail piece on Science and Technology
- Direct mail piece on Fanatics Inc. project
- Avon "Industry News"
- Bilco "Industry News"
- Trade show exhibits
- Development websites
- Commercial broker receptions
- Interstate billboard signs
- Media relations activities / placing success stories
- Hosting development clients
Business Retention Programs & Services
- ACES Awards Program
- Annual Wage & Benefits Survey
- Business retention visits and business retention surveys
- Business training workshops
- Legislative Breakfast event
- Economic Outlook event
- Ohio Business Week scholarships
- Development Financing and Incentives Guide
- Job fair for local workers
- Manufacturers Council program
Small Business Development
- Creation of a small business incubator, MCBI
- Small business development counseling
- City microloan fund partner
- Small Business resource center
- Industrial spec building construction
- Construction of North Pointe Drive
- Construction of East Pointe Park
- Downtown revitalization master plan
- Downtown business attraction/marketing
The overall goal of the partnership is to create a growing economy and a thriving local marketplace that will benefit both our businesses and our community. The five major development strategies employed to reach this goal are: Business Attraction - Marketing and advertising to attract new businesses to Muskingum County.
Retention and Expansion - Serving existing businesses in order to support retention and expansion of local firms and facilities.
Small Business Development - Encouraging the creation, survival and growth of small enterprises.
Downtown Revitalization - Business attraction and physical redevelopment to support and complement broader economic development efforts.
Infrastructure Development - Site, building and public infrastructure improvements.
As you can see, each of these strategies and the activities it represents is vitally important to economic development in our community. MGP turns these good ideas into action that leads to actual business growth by funding important development projects and programs implemented by the Chamber, Port Authority, City of Zanesville and County of Muskingum.