RDA Happenings August 2017
Posted on August 31, 2017 – By Emporia RDA
Over the years there are certain dates that become important events in our area economy.
For instance in June of 1994, we were first contacted by Menu Pet Food representatives, who was conducting a site search in eastern Kansas, southwest Missouri, or northeastern Oklahoma for a new nutrition plant. They identified this region as a “zone of indifference” meaning that Menu could build a Pet Nutrition plant in that area and be successful.
Our objective continues to present the Emporia region as a community that can make a difference for a prospective company that will be mutually beneficial to the Emporia region and business.
Over the years we developed a cooperative relationship with Menu, then in the spring 1997 the decision was made for Menu Pet Food to locate in Emporia, which today is Simmons Pet Food, which has grown steadily with numerous expansions in the last 20 years.
Simmons today has over 500 employees, and is one of our top ten major employers in the region, for almost 20 years has had a significant economic impact on our region, with job creation, purchasing agricultural products, and increasing the local property tax base.
The past July 20, 2017 we experienced the Emporia water outage. This impacted everyone and every business in Emporia, and Lyon County. It was a wake-up call that the city water system needs some upgrades to protect the water system from a total shut down. The Emporia City Commission is committed to necessary improvements to make the system will be much better, and more reliable.
In June 2013, we first met the developers Spencer Thompson, Mike Neighbors, and Rob Herman, who wanted to invest in Emporia’s retail development. Over the last year or so, the first phase of the Emporia Pavilions was completed with a ribbon cutting on August 14th for the new Hobby Lobby store on August 14th.
The community waits patiently for the next addition to the Emporia Pavilions. We welcome their investment and faith in the Emporia retail market area.
We are hopeful that several new developments will occur in the Emporia market area over the coming months. We have several of our existing businesses considering reinvesting in Emporia, and a few new companies considering Emporia.