Originally Published: June 18, 2018 6:05 a.m.
Yavapai County ranks third in Arizona -- behind Maricopa and Pinal counties -- in terms of incoming investments in the county, and Yavapai County is also third highest in the state in the number of building permits issued, according to a new survey released by SmartAsset.com.
The survey from the New York-based financial technology firm looked at four factors: businesses established over a three-year period, real growth (adjusted for inflation), new building permits, and federal funding.
The county had 4 percent business growth, $669 million in gross domestic product growth, 13.9 new building permits per 1,000 homes and $177 in federal funding per capita for an incoming investment index of 41.1; number one Maricopa County was at 53.45, and number two Pinal came in at 42.74.
WHAT IS THE IMPACT?
“Investment in the form of outside dollars is particularly favorable because it supplements the economy without diverting spending already going on,” said Professor Lee McPheters of Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business.
“If the government raises taxes to build a bridge, then the public spending replaces private spending that would have taken place if people had their tax money back. If the bridge is built with federal money, or if a large commercial building is constructed by an out-of-state company, then those outside dollars have maximum impact, and, moreover, they recycle in the economy to create multiplier – ripple – effects of respending.”
McPheters went on to point out that this is a reason why tourism is “a desirable industry, it is funded by outside dollars, if the tourists are from out of state.”
For the same reason, outside dollars have maximum impact, he said.
Part of attracting them is tied to commercial and residential construction, which can be a chicken-or-egg problem: “jobs draw people, more people means more jobs, more jobs draws more people” and so on.
The Prescott area is leading the state in the percentage of new jobs created, at 3.1 percent growth, or 1,930 new jobs for the first quarter of 2018.
There’s another, more subjective conclusion to be drawn from these investments, said Richard Hernandez, director of the Regional Economic Development Center at Yavapai College.
“Outside investments into our county can be an indicator of the investors’ appreciation of Yavapai County’s unique potential and diverse opportunities,” he said.
“They can also be mission-related investments having the potential to change and improve the existing landscape and provide additional opportunities for our communities. I believe Yavapai County has the talent to grow and evolve while still maintaining our rich history and the quality of life we all love so much.”
Follow Scott Orr on Twitter @AZNewsguy. He can be reached at 928-642-6999 or email him at sorr@prescottaz. com.