U of M Dearborn recognizes Dexter with eCities program

The City of Dexter has been recognized for its work to foster entrepreneurial growth and economic development in the annual eCities study conducted by researchers at iLabs, University of Michigan-Dearborn’s Center for Innovation Research. Dexter was honored as a five star community along with 35 other communities across the state.

Mayor Keough stated, “On behalf of all our citizens, staff and local leaders, the City of Dexter is proud to be recognized with this award. We are honored to be included on this list with so many other wonderful communities across the State of Michigan. I would like to congratulate the other communities and their leadership for helping make Michigan a great place to live and learn, work and play. We look forward to seeing you in Dexter in the future.”

City leaders and staff recognize the importance of a community having places for people to live, work and play. The City is committed to fostering an atmosphere that is conducive to economic growth and development. The City uses a wide variety of tools to accomplish this goal, including place-based master planning and zoning, an economic development corporation, industrial facilities tax exemptions and capital improvement planning.

Five-Star Communities (*denotes best practice community)
Five-star communities spent more than $3.4 million on economic development, had more than $31 million in additions to assets in the past year and had more than $29 billion in combined real and personal property values.
Cascade Charter Township
City of Coldwater
City of Dearborn
Delta Charter Township
City of Dexter
City of Grandville
Kochville Township
City of Marquette
City of Midland
City of Mount Pleasant
Northville Charter Township
City of Novi
Pittsfield Township*
City of Plymouth
Plymouth Township
City of Sault Ste. Marie*
City of Troy
City of Wixom

Four-Star Communities (*denotes best practice community)
Four-star communities saw over $475 million in commercial construction and issued 1,796 in commercial construction permits. Additionally, more than 75 percent of four-star communities had shared economic development programs and half had full- time economic development employees on staff.

Village of Almont
Alpine Township
Comstock Charter Township
City of Farmington Hills
Flint Charter Township
Garfield Charter Township
City of Grant Blanc*
City of Grant Rapids
City of Madison Heights*
City of Mason
Charter Township of Meridian
City of Norton Shores
City of Rochester
City of Romulus
Saginaw Charter Township
City of Saline
City of Tecumseh*
Thomas Township

The eCities study surveyed 66 communities from 29 counties in Michigan that are home to more than 19 percent of Michigan residents and 10 percent of its college graduates. These communities count for nearly one-fifth of the state’s entrepreneurs who earned more than $1.8 billion in self-employed income. More than 60 percent of these communities have a local business database, nearly a third provide business improvement grants, and nearly 40 percent have full-time economic development employees.

“The eCities project highlights how local governments from across the state of Michigan are cultivating and supporting economic development. These communities show how local governments can work in distinct and strategic ways to energize public spaces, while investing in businesses and job development,” said Tim Davis, director, iLabs.

The communities will be honored today, Thursday, October 29, at UM-Dearborn. Support for eCities is provided in part by the DTE Energy Foundation, Miller Canfield, Oakland County Economic Development and Community Affairs and UM-Dearborn’s College of Business.

The annual eCities research project, which began in 2007, uses data supplied by the participants, as well as other public records to assemble a six-factor, 32-item index of entrepreneurial activity, looking at such factors as clustering, incentives, growth, policies, community and education. The study focuses on entrepreneurship because of its importance to expansion and diversification of Michigan’s regional economies and the impact small businesses have on job creation. To date, 199 communities across Michigan have participated in the study.

For more information about Dexter, please contact Michelle Aniol, Community Development Manager at 734-429-8303 or maniol@dextermi.gov.

This post is based on a press release submitted by the city of Dexter’s Community Development Manager Michelle Aniol.

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