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Valley non-profit opens Arizona Economic Recovery Center

Posted at 8:00 AM, Apr 26, 2021

There is now a place for business owners, residents, and everyone in between to go to get help rebounding amid the pandemic.

ABC15 Mornings spoke with Local First Arizona's Founder and CEO Kimber Lanning about their new Arizona Economic Recovery Center.

"As a state, we have to really intentionally focus on economic recovery," Lanning explained. "After the last economic recovery of '08 and '09, we actually did not perform well at all and it took us a greater period of time to reach pre-recession levels of activity than all of the surrounding states. We can very intentionally aggregate all of this information and get it out in a meaningful way as well as uphold a lot of these communities so they can be competitive for some of these dollars."

Lanning said the new center is looking at federal, state, local, and grant funding and helping to connect the community to the money with easy-to-follow templates and mentors to support people.

"Let's just say, you have a small main street program that's trying to renovate a park and increase tourism," Lanning explained. "They could apply as a collaborative... the downtown organization... a local tourism entity or it could be a state tourism entity, and a partner comes on board that wants to help them with actually the park renovation. So, those three entities could apply for a grant that is designed say create jobs in that region and their strategy would be to renovate the park to drive additional revenue that would create jobs at the local business. So, it's really systems changed thinking, right?"

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