Ec. Dev. Challenges

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Retail is Changing. What is Freeport Doing About That?

Keith McBride on September 05, 2019 in Ec. Dev. Challenges, Experiential Retail, Marketing, Strategic Planning

Both the taxable retail sales data and anecdotal evidence from local retailers supports the conclusion that online retail shopping is impacting brick and mortar retail sales, but it’s only a part of the story, especially in Freeport. For example, despite the decline in retail sales and the prevailing narrative about…

 

Embracing Automation

Keith McBride on February 22, 2018 in Demographics, Ec. Dev. Challenges, Workforce Development

Last year, the Pew Research Center reported that while most Americans are aware that manufacturing employment has decreased dramatically since 2000, most were unaware that American manufacturing output has increased significantly over that same time period. The changing job market is a major issue for economic development nationwide, but even…

 

Disappointing News from the SBA

Keith McBride on July 06, 2017 in Ec. Dev. Challenges, Entrepreneurship

In 2015, the towns of Yarmouth, Freeport, Brunswick, Bath and Topsham cooperated to bring a new, SBA-funded business assistance program called “Scale Up” to the area. Amidst the $43.2 million being cut this year from the Small Business Administration is the elimination of Scale Up.  The total cost of the program is…