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Economic development metrics still lacking mid-year

Rick Wagner • Jun 22, 2013 at 7:40 PM

KINGSPORT — Sullivan County’s economic metrics don’t paint a positive picture,

but NETWORKS — Sullivan County leader Richard Venable said it’s not time to


“We’re not at all pleased about it but we’re not panicked about it,”

NETWORKS Chief Executive Officer and President Venable said recently at a board

meeting at the Domtar Cabin in Colonial Heights.

With some luck and hard

work, he said, the 2013 Scorecard will improve.

The metrics track projects

with which NETWORKS was directly involved. So although NETWORKS officials were

present at Eastman Chemical Co.’s announcement earlier this month of $1.6

billion in capital spending on construction and 300 new permanent jobs, that and

other projects without direct NETWORKS involved are not included.


June 18, new jobs created with help or involvement from NETWORKS were 40, 20

each from new and existing business and industry. That compares to a goal of

575, 275 existing and 300 new.

Year-to-date in 2012 numbers were 30


Also, capital investment was $1.3 million for existing and none for

new, compared to goals of $26 million for existing and $10 million for new.

Year-to-date for 212 was $1 million in new and $15 million in existing.


told, he said 29 projects remain active, and those in the “likely” and

“committed” status represent more than 555 new jobs and more than $168.7 million

in new investment.

NETWORKS also has a more complex Performance Scorecard,

which has weighted goals. Performance so far is 21.7 percent of weight goals and

46.30 percent actual. One of the reasons the weighted results are short of the

actual one is that NETWORKS has sold no business park or industrial park land.

Land sales by acres is weighted 7.5 percent of the scorecard, as is the dollar

amount of those land sales.

Venable and board Chairman Charlie Floyd also

went over the draft 2013-14 operating budget, which is to stay at $700,000 as in

2012-13, although the actual expenses to date for the fiscal year ending June 30

was $621,966.However, the board lacked a quorum, so it could not vote on the

budget. It will meet again in August.

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