Merry Christmas!

It’s Christmas Eve and I am watching the holiday classic movie, It’s a Wonderful Life, on TV. I am always impressed by how much George Bailey and the Bailey Bros. Building & Loan Association were involved in economic and community development. From George’s recruiting Sam Wainwright’s plastic manufacturing facility to Bedford Falls, to helping Martini grow his business, to developing affordable housing to retain a healthy, sustainable community, to designing and developing neighborhoods — George Bailey and the economic development efforts of the old Building & Loan made a more wonderful life for the residents of Bedford Falls.

Hot Dog and Hee Haw, it is a wonderful life and I hope that y’all have a Merry Christmas, a happy New Year and a prosperous 2014!

About Daryl Phillips, CEcD

I am a professional economic developer. I presently work for communities and companies in developing and implementing workforce and economic development solutions as CEO of Phillips Economic Development Solutions (Phi EDS). Prior to September 2017, I was the economic development professional who served a community team of elected officials, business people, community leaders and dedicated stakeholders for economic development in Cheatham County, Tennessee (pop. 39,880) and its four towns. During my five-year tenure, I served the team as Cheatham County grew over 1,700 jobs, turned around population declines at the start of this decade into healthy population growth, increased tourism expenditures 20.3% and local tax revenue from tourism 25.4%, grew sales tax revenue 36%, focused on developing the local workforce and was recognized by SmartAsset as having the 9th highest Incoming Investment Index of all the 95 counties in Tennessee. I am a member of International Economic Development Council, Southern Economic Development Council, Tennessee Economic Development Council and International Council of Shopping Centers. I have earned the designation of Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) from International Economic Development Council (IEDC), the Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP) certification from National Development Council and hold a Master of Business Administration from Tennessee Technological University.
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2 Responses to Merry Christmas!

  1. mistye says:

    Hi Daryl, I’m looking at purchasing land in Cheatham county, but honestly it feels like a depressed area of economy. With that said, I noticed some recent activity that could indicate that Cheatham county is finally trying to move forward. i.e. lowering the tax for businesses. What else can you tell me about the future of the county. The land is so beautiful, but I have to insure that it’s a wise investment.

    Thanks, Mistye

    • Mistye,

      Cheatham County certainly is a beautiful place and a great community. It has not had the double digit growth in population that some counties in the Nashville area has experienced, but has worked toward being sure that it is prepared for the infrastructure needs for the growth it seeks. The county does have many areas in which we wish to improve and several we are working on, but by some very commonly accepted measures of distress, she scores fairly well. Cheatham County has the sixth (6th) highest Median Household Income (MHI) as shown by the U.S. Census latest American Community Survey data. Above the MHI for Tennessee and the higher United States national number, only Williamson, Wilson, Fayette, Sumner and Rutherford Counties have MHI than Cheatham County at $53,337. Cheatham County’s unemployment rate was reported at 6.3% in the Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development’s latest monthly county level report, lower than 8.2% for Tennessee and 7.0% for the United States. In some areas, unemployment has dropped due to people becoming discouraged and dropping out of the workforce. However, back in July, Cheatham County had one of the highest labor force participation rates in the state.

      I have been working for Cheatham County since mid-September 2012 and I would not have come here if I had not seen a great potential for economic development while maintaining the quality in their communities. We, local business and government leaders, have worked to lower the development fee from $3,750 to $50 per unit and the adequate facilities tax from $1.00 per square foot under roof to $0.10 per square feet. Property taxes have remained low at $2.78. In the last year, the community helped attract a buyer that has made the Braxton Condominium development a success, extended adequate water and sewer lines along Highway 41A from Pleasant View to New Hope Road exit on I-24, secured funding and engineering to expand and renovate the wastewater treatment facility for the Ashland City Industrial Park area, actively worked with developers to secure funding and begin construction on an assisted living facility (goal in the retiree attraction segment of the county’s long range strategic plan) and funded and developed a comprehensive tourism development plan that will begin implementation in 2014. Cheatham County leaders have also seen the value of regionalism and have embraced active participation in the Mayor’s Caucus, the Regional Transportation Authority, the Middle Tennessee Regional Transportation Planning Organization and other regional efforts that will benefit the region as a whole and specifically Cheatham County.

      Now, I cannot promise a return on your investment, but it seems to me that Cheatham County is on the right path to maximize its potential with smart growth policies.

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