PORTSMOUTH – Progress in Scioto County is moving rapidly, according to Commissioner Bryan Davis, who pointed to improvements in infrastructure, economic development, and partnerships as fueling the movement.
Davis spoke at the Portsmouth Area Chamber of Commerce breakfast on April 5.
Pointing to the success of balancing the county’s budgets for 10 years in a row, Davis said it’s crucial for any economic development plan for the county’s finances to be sound. The county currently maintains a high-grade credit rating, “which means Scioto County is a good investment” and can provide good services for businesses looking to become established or expand here.
“Because we’re balanced, we can build,” Davis said. “If you do not have utilities or have sites where people can build, they look somewhere else, period.”
And building has been booming. Last year, Scioto County Engineer Darren Lebrun’s office improved local roads and culverts to the tune of $8 million. This year, area bridges will be improved with $10 million in grant dollars aimed at making them safer and the area more conducive to further development.
“You’ve got to have good roads, you’ve got to have good bridges,” Davis said, pointing to southern Ohio’s topography. “We have a valley everywhere, we have a creek everywhere … we have a lot of bridges and all of those need maintained.”
He also pointed to a variety of partnerships the county commissioners and economic development team have developed with groups at the county, region, and state levels. These include such organizations as Southern Ohio Port Authority, Southern Ohio Diversification Initiative, Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission, Joint Economic Development Initiative of Southern Ohio, and Ohio SE. But also partnering with non-profit organizations is valuable to address issues within the community such as drug abuse prevention at the youth level.
“The county commissioners and our economic development teamwork with so many partners. It truly takes a village, it takes a lot of people,” Davis said. “It’s constant. The communication never stops.”
Reach Lori McNelly at (740) 370-0713 ext. 1928, by email at [email protected], © 2023 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved