Local businesses could see needed help

Published 10:16 pm Thursday, January 15, 2009


Pike County has been chosen as one of five pilot counties to test a new state program designed to help businesses find avenues of help to keep them afloat.

According to Marsha Gaylard, president of the Pike County Economic Development Corp., Pike County has been chosen as part of a five-county pilot edition of the program to see how beneficial the program will be.

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In a time when the economy is deteriorating daily, there is a growing need for businesses and local governments to evaluate options to keep business doors open.

The state of Alabama, along with county economic development agencies is doing just that.

The state is launching a program to help existing businesses take measures in order to continue business during tough economic times,

As part of the program, local businesses with 20 or more employees will be surveyed to see what problems may exist and what needs to be done to improve the conditions.

“The program will help identify resources that can help (businesses) solve their issues,” Gaylard said.

If the program proves successful in the five pilot counties, it will most likely become a statewide program, Gaylard said.

Surveyors must be trained in order to know what to look for and what questions to ask in order to help evaluate the businesses in which they conduct interviews.

One of the first training programs will be held at the PC-EDC building Tuesday morning at 9 a.m.

The program will help train individuals in this area who will be interviewing local businesses.

After the training is complete the surveyor will setup times to interview at the businesses.

Once the interview is complete and the situation is evaluated, then solutions and avenues of help can be offered to the businesses.

This program is one of the many services the PC-EDC offers to businesses in Pike County.

Gaylard said that the PC-EDC goal has always been to help local businesses.

She said the orginazation is constantly researching and recruiting new businesses to the area and offers services to new and existing businesses.

Helping local businesses take advantage of state help is just one of the many ways PC-EDC helps Pike County businesses.

“We are working find ways to help our business community be more successful,” Gaylard said.

PC-EDC is working on many more projects at this time, for a more in depth story on Pike County economic updates, pick up a copy of Sunday’s paper.