WILLMAR—One of the lessons learned so far during this pandemic is how important internet accessibility is, especially when so much of life is being done from home. Remote work, distance learning and entertainment have all jumped online and those households with slow internet, or in some cases no access at all, have found themselves struggling to keep up and stay connected. “This is important, people need it to work from home, connect with family members, do school work,” said Connie
WILLMAR—Making an IMPACT in Kandiyohi County and beyond in 2020, taking a look at individuals, groups and businesses working to make an impact during the coronavirus pandemic and every day. Read the special publication by the West Central Tribune.
The EDC conducts strategic planning each year to set priority issues and focus the work of its committees and staff. The information we get from local businesses is imperative in our planning process. For the last three years we have had as one of our priorities, efforts to recruit, retain and train workforce for the area. We have worked on that goal in many ways, including the creation of a video to show the fun, food and other amenities available in our area. The video is available to businesses
Many rural Kandiyohi County residents still remain without access to high-speed broadband and the many benefits that come from having such access. The situation has never been more apparent than in the past months of social distancing, working from home and distance learning. The Broadband and Advanced Technology Committee of the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission (EDC) is a committee focused on securing high-speed broadband for all people in our county. The
WILLMAR—When you add up all the money that has so far been awarded to small businesses and nonprofits through coronavirus relief programs run by the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission, the total is more than $2 million. Since March the EDC has established a handful of grant or loan programs focused on providing financial relief to businesses in the county hit hard by economic impacts tied to the virus outbreak. The programs include the CARES Pandemic Relief Program,
WILLMAR—Thanks to perfect weather last week, the concrete pour for the deck of the new Highway 12 bridge in Willmar was completed last week, according to the weekly Willmar Wye construction update from the Minnesota Department of Transportation. Progress also continues on the Minnesota Highway 40 bridge, with pier construction concluding. Next up will be construction of the Highway 40 bridge abutments. Read the full article at the West Central Tribune.
WILLMAR — The CARES Pandemic Relief Program, managed by the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission, will receive a needed influx of cash. The Willmar City Council at its meeting Monday approved transferring $1 million to the EDC for the program, which provides grants to eligible and approved small businesses and nonprofits in the county which have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. “I do believe the EDC is best at distributing these funds across
WILLMAR—The coronavirus pandemic, which has sickened millions and killed thousands has also had a devastating impact on small businesses and nonprofits. Even now, as some states and cities begin to reopen, nothing is back to normal. In an effort to help those still struggling to hold on, the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission have created the CARES Pandemic Relief Grant program, aptly known as CPR. “We are trying to keep businesses alive,” said Aaron
WILLMAR—The $7.6 million Kandiyohi County, Willmar and most of the other cities and townships in the county received in total from Minnesota through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act is both an opportunity and a challenge. An opportunity because it is much-needed funding for local units of government to meet a pandemic no one expected. It is a challenge because the amount of money, the reporting requirements attached to it and short time frame could be too much for some
WILLMAR—If Paul Damhof is able to secure the capital he needs to complete a $10 million expansion of his saltwater shrimp farm near Blomkest, he said he believes he would be able to produce 250,000 pounds of Pacific white shrimp a year. Pretty impressive considering the Pacific Ocean is more than 2,000 miles away. “We are raising shrimp in salt water,” Damhof said. “All we are doing is mimicking the ocean water and raising saltwater shrimp right here in Minnesota.” Damhof