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More Maine Communities Earn Business-Friendly Recognition
AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage and the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) announce that the City of Eastport and the Towns of Fryeburg and Wiscasset have recently been designated ‘certified business-friendly”. With the addition of these three communities, a total of 34 cities and towns across Maine have been recognized over the last four years.
The “Certified Business-Friendly Community” program, administered by DECD, encourages Maine municipalities to take a critical look at all areas of their business attraction strategy and examine ways the community interacts with businesses to promote new private investment.
“It’s great to see more Maine communities taking the necessary steps to grow our economy,” said Governor Paul R. LePage. “Hopefully liberals in Augusta will take notice. Instead of constantly pursuing a job-killing, anti-business agenda, they should do what’s right for Maine and support policies to make our state more competitive, so all Maine people can become more prosperous.”
The “Certified Business-Friendly Community” program began in 2012. Since then, Maine’s list of “Certified Business-Friendly” communities has grown to include: Auburn, Augusta, Bath, Belfast, Biddeford, Brewer, Bucksport, Caribou, Cumberland, Eastport, Ellsworth, Fairfield, Farmington, Fort Kent, Fryeburg, Guilford, Hermon, Kennebunk, Lewiston, Lincoln, Madison, Pittsfield, Poland, Presque Isle, Richmond, Saco, Sanford, Sherman, Southwest Harbor, Topsham, Van Buren, Wells, Westbrook, and Wiscasset.
Each community is awarded a certificate of achievement, two MaineDOT road signs and becomes a key part of Maine’s business attraction strategy.
“DECD will gladly work with any Maine community that wants to earn this designation; we want every Maine city and town to be business-friendly”, said DECD Commissioner George Gervais.
A team of public and private economic development experts reviews each application to determine eligibility in the program. Some of the business-friendly characteristics that earned Eastport, Fryeburg, and Wiscasset its “certified business-friendly” designation include:
• Solid partnerships with local, regional and state entities regarding workforce development • Utilization of state and federal grant programs, in coordination with private investments, to revitalize the City’s historic downtown • Many quality of life amenities including popular annual festivals • Rapid growth of Eastport Port Authority a positive for City, region and State • Straightforward licensing and permitting processes
• “A Guide to Doing Business in Fryeburg, Maine” • Good collaboration/involvement with local, regional and state entities • Updated Comprehensive Plan and Land Use Ordinance • Streamlined licensing and permitting processes • Creation of Economic Development Committee
• Well organized and well written application • Qualified Planning and Development Director • Effective utilization of Tax Increment Financing Districts (TIFs) • Good collaboration/involvement with local chamber, regional and state entities • Annual festivals show good community support and are highly popular
"I want to congratulate and thank Eastport, Fryeburg, and Wiscasset for their continued commitment to business excellence. These nine communities have set an example for others to follow as we move Maine forward to becoming a place where businesses and communities thrive," added Governor LePage.