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Economic development was the topic of conversation during Thursday’s work session

Pocatello City Hall
KIFI
Pocatello City Hall

POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI) - Pocatello City Council members met at City Hall on Thursday for their scheduled work session.

During the session, REDI CEO Teresa McKnight met with the council to discuss their priorities for 2021. McKnight says the city's agricultural, manufacturing, and energy sectors are all drawing widespread interest.

To prepare for that growth, McKnight brought up Idaho Falls and Blackfoot as examples of communities that set up initiatives on how to go about economic development.

"We want you to put yourself in the driver's seat of the businesses or the site selectors that are seeking locations and looking to expand or developing your city or your county,” McKnight said.

Throughout the session, McKnight advocated that the time for growth is right now.

“We got to prep for growth now, because it's already starting," McKnight said. "We’re already feeling it. We’re already seeing it."

McKnight also discussed the downside of Pocatello possibly losing metropolitan status in the eyes of the federal government, as we reported on Tuesday.

“It will impact Idaho policymakers, public officials, researchers, economic development agencies and businesses," McKnight said. "So, it's not good no way how you look at it."

However, not all council members were down on the idea of being labeled a Micropolitan city.

“I really struggle with it," said council member Roger Bray. "I understand that it's got a potential downside, but it also might have a potential upside in that we will be looked at more for who we are instead of lumped in with everybody else and these mega cities."

McKnight said REDI's goals for 2021 are seeing gains in the workforce, housing, infrastructure, and transportation departments.

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Cole Sams

Cole is a reporter for Local News 8 and KIDK Eyewitness News 3.

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