Saturday, November 6, 2010

GrowRaton! Mission Statement


The mission of GrowRaton! is to promote a strong and healthy economic environment in the greater Raton area.  We seek to
  • Attract and expand retail, commercial, and industrial enterprises in order to provide a diverse and expanding tax base
  • Provide existing businesses with resources and information
  • Promote growth through marketing, research, and business outreach
  • Support improvements in education and training of our human resources
  • Motivate and coordinate planning/zoning initiatives to maximize our community land and use of physical resources
  • Facilitate a sustainable balance of the community’s financial, social, and natural resources
  • Serve as a catalyst for increasing wealth and growth through collaboration with government officials and business partners
  • Foster partnerships for economic development with all entities throughout the area
  • Promote heritage, wildlife, and recreational tourism in our region
  • Market our area as a destination to attract conventions and organized groups
  • Establish and enhance our identity as a diverse community for retirees
  • Attract new residents and develop healthy community growth

GrowRaton! Vision Statement


Our Vision for Raton, Colfax County,
 and the Northeast Region of New Mexico

GrowRaton! supports economic development throughout the Northeast Region of New Mexico.  Our vision for Raton’s future is a vibrant community with a prosperous and sustainable economy.  Arts and culture, tourism, and a revitalized downtown business district are thriving.  The community offers a mix of industrial, manufacturing, health-related, and high technology companies.  A pro-business atmosphere nurtures the expansion of existing businesses and invites new ventures which translate into job opportunities and an expanded tax base.  Finally, we see quality of life issues as fundamental to preserving our “small town” environment and we seek to always be known for our hospitality and graciousness.

A Brief History of GrowRaton!

In July 2010, Paul Jenkins and Kathy Harris joined together as the Raton Community Economic Development Group, also know as the RCED Group.  We put on a series of three public forums which were held in the International Room of the International Bank in Raton, NM.  The first public forum, held on July 21, 2010, focused on developing a vision of what a prosperous Raton would look like 10-15 years in the future.  The second public forum, held on August 3, 2010, was used to conduct a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) Analysis for the local Raton economy.  In the third public forum, held on August 19, 2010, the participants were asked to vote on what priority they would give to various economic development strategies.

In the meantime, a Vision Statement Task Force developed a Vision Statement as to what a prosperous Raton would look like.  A Steering Committee was then formed and developed a Mission Statement for the organization.  The Steering Committee eventually decided that the organization would incorporate as a non-profit corporation under the name Greater Raton Economic Development Corporation.  The Steering Committee also decided that the corporation would do business as (DBA) “GrowRaton!”

On September 10, 2010, the New Mexico Economic Development Department (NM EDD) sponsored a day-long Regional Economic Development for Colfax County and northeastern New Mexico.  The Steering Committee worked with the NM EDD to publicize and organize the Summit.  At that event, Paul Jenkins spoke on behalf of the "RCED Group" for the last time and publicly announced the group’s intention to incorporate as the Greater Raton Economic Development Corporation which would use the DBA of “GrowRaton!”  The Steering Committee consulted with a local attorney, who generously donated his time, and Articles of Incorporation were filed with the NM Public Regulation Commission (PRC).  On September 30, 2010, the PRC accepted the Articles of Incorporation and the corporation was formally established.

Based on the priorities which came out of the third public forum, Grow Raton! organized into a series of workgroups task forces centered around various community and economic develop-ment goals which had received the most votes at that public forum.  The two workgroups and seven proposed task forces were outlined as follows:

Business & Government Work Group

Business Creation & Recruitment Task Force
Creation and recruitment of small businesses
                        Promote a business friendly atmosphere
                        Put together a recruitment package  
Develop incubator program to encourage entrepreneurs
                        Create program to attract & develop green industries
                        Increase recruitment of film industry
Solid Waste Recycling Task Force
                        Find ways to increase current collection rates
                        Develop strategy for long-term solid waste handling

Business Retention Task Force
                        Promote “Buy Local” campaign
                        Provide existing businesses with resources and information
Government Resources Task Force
                        Create private/public partnership for economic development
Develop incentives package for businesses
                        Enforce health code/zoning standards
                        Identify grant resources
Improve representation at state/federal funding decisions
Attraction & Tourism Work Group

                        Beautification Task Force
                                    Implement downtown design improvements
                                    Develop bicycle/walking paths and trails
                        Community Awareness & Pride Task Force
                                    Campaign to develop civic pride
                                    Develop community-wide clean-up campaign
                        Marketing & Tourism Task Force
                                    Develop town brand
                                    Increase promotion of existing attractions
                                    (billboards & signage)
                                    Put up “Welcome” and way-finding signs
                                    Cross-promotion of activities with other communities
Expand community/regional attendance at events
Promote Raton as tourist destination for day trips to surrounding sites
Develop and market Raton as a retirement location

Due to the fact that the Beautification Task Force and the Community Awareness & Pride Task Force shared many of the same volunteers and interests, it was later decided that the two task forces would combine, at least initially, into a Beautification and Community Pride Task Force.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

GrowRaton! Introduces Facebook Page

We invite you to follow the scheduled meetings of our various Task Forces using our new Facebook page.  Just click on the "Badge" on the right side of this page and then go to "Events" on the left of our Facebook home page.

Monday, November 1, 2010