During this sluggish economic climate the competition between cities to bring new development has drastically increased. The flight of industry as well as many other service industries from American cities has resulted in rising unemployment and plummeting tax revenue. As a result cities are left to fight for their lives to bring new economic development in order to put people back to work and raise tax revenues.
One of the industries that cities across the country have recently started to target in order to move forward is the development of alternative energy sources. Areas which have been victim to the decline in the steel industry as well as manufacturing have been forced to literally retool themselves. Their solution has been to turn their manufacturing based economy into a high tech economy.
Cities have targeted companies which develop windmills, solar cells, fuel cells, geothermal technology and even hydrogen technology. These industries have been viewed as the future of the global economy and cities are trying to jump on board early. Due to a lack economic situation, investors have hesitated to back these alternative energy companies. In order to ease the way, some cities have offered significant tax breaks to companies in attempt to get these companies to set up shop. The increase in income tax the city will receive from the new employees offsets the tax break given to the company.
New Growth in Struggling Ohio
One of the areas which have been hit hard by the struggling economy is that of eastern Ohio. Primarily a steel manufacturing economy, eastern Ohio has turned its attention towards natural gas. Companies from areas such as Oklahoma and Texas were contacted by city officials to bring their operations to the region. Offices employing hundreds of people have been set up in cities throughout Eastern Ohio to act as base of operations.
Not only are cities enjoying the increase of income tax revenue, but also the revenue from the natural gas itself. Estimates of one million dollars will be flowing to cities and villages general fund from the revenue of natural gas. Steps like these are being used by cities across the country to pull themselves into the new economy.