The county needs to hold out the welcome mat to new business, but also make incentives available to businesses already here, county supervisors Chairman Hank Kuiper said in a state of the county address Wednesday.
It is an exciting time to be the chairman of board, Kuiper said. Many projects the county has worked on for years are starting to come to fruition, he said.
Imperial Irrigation District Director Andy Horne and Kuiper gave joint state addresses Wednesday morning at Brunner's Restaurant in El Centro.
The first annual state of the county and IID addresses were sponsored by the local Coalition of Labor and Business — a private group formed to promote the county — and CalEnergy, which operates geothermal power plants in the North County area.
Kuiper said this past year saw major milestones such as the Gateway of the Americas landowners agreeing on a tax rate so water and utilities could be put in place and the land could be developed.