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County conducts wage and benefits study

A wage and benefits study is currently underway in Yavapai County.

The Prescott Valley Economic Development Foundation, City of Prescott's Economic Development and the Chino Valley Area Chamber of Commerce are sponsoring the study on the west side of the county.

CV chamber CEO Ab Jackson said the entities are using $15,000 of a $50,000 Yavapai County Industrial Development Authority Grant for regional economic development to pay for the study.

Gary Marks, Prescott Valley Economic Development Foundation executive director, said his organization has done a workforce study every two years for the western part of the county. Pathfinders, out of Dallas, Texas, is doing the study. It is also doing the same study in the Verde Valley. Marks expects the study to take six to eight weeks.

Once Pathfinders completes the study, he said, the three entities will receive a workforce available report, and a wage and fringe benefits report for the Verde Valley and the western part of the county.

During his annual report to the Chino Valley Mayor's Economic Development Committee, Jackson said the chamber also used some of the grant money to send President Charlie Arnold to the Solar Power International Conference and Expo in Anaheim, Calif.

Jackson said the chamber achievements and activities during the past year include:

• Successfully lobbying the town council for a sign ordinance enforcement relaxation because of hardships caused by the Highway 89 widening project.

• Participating in the Water Ordinance stakeholder meetings.

• Creating a Chino Valley Economic Development Organizaton and a website.

The chamber's business leakage and retention efforts and successes during 2009 include:

• Getting permission from the Arizona Department of Transportation to put banners up across Highway 89 in Chino Valley promoting upcoming events.

• Published the chamber's first lodging and dining guide. The chamber is currently revising and reprinting it.

• Sponsored the Home, Health and Business Expo. It had 60 exhibitors.

• Sponsored the Drake Cement Plant and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, board orientation through Chino Valley, and the solar expo trips.


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