The Economic Development Corporation (EDC) of Wayne County, Indiana, was organized in 1993 to replace earlier efforts by the Richmond Chamber of Commerce and City of Richmond. The organization is under contract for economic development services with the Wayne County Commissioners and most of the county’s towns, and has a volunteer Board of Directors. To ensure equal representation of the county, board members are appointed as follows: two board members are appointed by the Wayne County Commissioners and one by Wayne County Council, two by the Mayor of Richmond and one by Richmond Common Council, three by the town councils from Centerville, Cambridge City and Hagerstown, and three by the Richmond-Wayne County Chamber of Commerce.
Approved in 1992, the county economic development income tax (EDIT) funds the corporation and economic development projects. EDIT generates approximately $2.3 million a year. Half of that revenue is used to develop new industrial parks in Wayne County, to incentivize economic development projects and for EDC operating expenses. The other half of the tax is returned to the various communities in Wayne County to fund projects of their choosing.
The EDC staff consists of the President, Manager of Community Affairs, Manager of Existing Business & Education, and the Development Coordinator. These positions work together to accomplish EDC goals and objectives. They assist businesses with incentives, programs, and services that are available on a state and local level. They communicate with local businesses through a number of different ways including business retention and expansion visits, social media, and by developing integral relationships. They work to keep the public informed about EDC programs, activities and initiatives through different avenues including traditional and social media. Additionally, they also work closely with small communities in Wayne County, assisting with economic development projects and offering grant research and technical assistance.