“I believe this is the direction of the future,” stated Carlton County Commissioner Ted Pihlman after county board members unanimously supported the formation of a County Economic Development Authority (EDA) on Tuesday.
While the idea of a county EDA first started to percolate through the ranks as long as several years ago, it took a while for the idea to take hold and make its way through the policies and procedures that precede the formation of such an organization.
As any of the 35,000-plus drivers per day steering through Cloquet on Highway 33 or up I-35 toward Duluth can attest, signs of commercial development are virtually everywhere. From new and relocating local businesses including Southgate Pizza and A Le Salon, to the already established big-box Wal-Mart and chain-restaurant Applebees, the face of Cloquet is changing. The wide variety of goods and services that comes with development is what area consumers expect today, according to Brian Fritsinger, Cloquet city administrator.
To get a solid handle on the Carlton County Economic Development department financial situation, Carlton County commissioners unanimously approved a moratorium on new grant funding at Tuesday’s regular meeting.
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