The Charles County Department of Economic Development recently released its five-year Economic Development Strategic Plan. The plan, which includes more than a dozen recommendations, aims to increase the County’s long-term prosperity by improving competitiveness, strengthening existing businesses and identifying new investment opportunities. Ultimately, the implementation of the Strategic Plan will drive the economic future of the County forward, and create an environment where businesses can prosper.
Developed in collaboration with Development Counsellors International and Garner Economics, LLC, the plan identifies new key target industries that best match the County’s competitive advantages, like its strategic location, high quality of life, young workforce and affordable cost of doing business. The County will focus its efforts on the following industries: federal contracting, health services, technology, business services and retail.
The recommendations come from Garner Economics’ findings, based on research, analysis and feedback from stakeholders. Garner Economics conducted an in-depth assessment of the County’s competitiveness, which included a demographic and economic analysis, labor market and cluster analysis, comparison of benchmarked communities, and a community assets and challenges assessment. Stakeholder input was gathered through four focus group sessions in October 2015, followed by a county-wide electronic survey completed by 510 residents.
The Economic Development Strategic Plan was presented in a public session to the community on May 25, 2016, and to the County Commissioners on May 24, 2016. Both the plan and slide presentation can be downloaded here.