Proposed implementation milestones ECC

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Proposed implementation milestones ECC Powered By Docstoc
					  Serving:
     Carteret, Craven, Duplin, Greene, Jones,
  Lenoir, Onslow, Pamlico, and Wayne Counties




Comprehensive Economic
 Development Strategy
                   2007
  Sponsored by the Economic Development
              Administration
       2007 CEDS                                                         TABLE OF CONTENTS
____________________________________________________________________________________________________


                                      Table of Contents

       I.     Background……………………………………………………………….                                          1

       II.    Analysis……………………………………………………………………                                           9

       III.   Goals and Objectives……………………………………………………..                                  23

       IV.    Community and Private Sector Participation………………………….                       25

       V.     Suggested Projects List…………………………………………………..                                31

       VI.    Prioritized Listing of Vital Projects……………………………………..                       37

       VII.   Economic Clusters………………………………………………………..                                    51

       VIII. Implementation Action Plan……………………………………………..                                55

       IX.    Performance Measurers………………………………………………….                                   67

       X.     Integrating CEDS with State Economic Priorities……………………..                   71




                                          EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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                                                    BACKGROUD
         I.      BACKGROUND

         Geography

         The Eastern Carolina Council (ECC) region is a very diverse region ranging from coastal
         counties with tourism based economies to rural counties with agriculture based economies.
         There is no major metropolitan area to serve as the economic center for the region; rather,
         two MSA‘s, Jacksonville in Onslow County and Goldsboro in Wayne County, and one
         micropolitan area, New Bern in Craven County serve as economic centers for the region.
         Three military bases: Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point in Craven County, Camp
         Lejeune/ New River Air Station in Onslow County and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base
         in Wayne County are major economic influences in the region.

         Economy

         The regional economy of the Eastern Carolina Council, like that of the US and North
         Carolina, is transforming from a traditional base of tobacco and textiles to one based in
         knowledge and technology. Changes in the marketplace – driven by both technology and
         globalization – demand a greater capacity to innovate. To support that innovation, the
         region requires an appropriately skilled workforce and a comprehensive infrastructure.

         During the past few years, the changing marketplace has impacted the region‘s counties in
         different ways. The region‘s coastal counties enjoyed an expansion of tourism and military-
         related activities as the nation invested more in national security and spent more of its free-
         time nearer home. The inland counties suffered from declines in both the tobacco industry
         and traditional manufacturing. The tobacco industry declined as the nation‘s quota system
         was dismantled. Traditional manufacturing plants competed for markets based on price and
         lost market share to global competitors. The region‘s western counties are beginning to feel
         the initial effects of Raleigh‘s rapid economic and population growth south and eastward.

         Business cycles and job churning are natural parts of an economy‘s evolution. In 2001-
         2002, the US economy endured a recession that resulted in substantial job losses, especially
         in the manufacturing sector. Only during the past several years has the US begun to realize
         job gains as companies begin to hire again. However, many rural areas, including the ECC
         region, have been slower to rebound from the recession. Since 2001, the ECC Region lost
         net jobs, much of that from downsizing that occurred during the recession‘s early months.
         The region only began to regain some of those jobs during 2004.

         The manufacturing sector bore the brunt of the region‘s job losses. Since 2001, the region‘s
         manufacturers have announced layoffs affecting thousands of workers. These lay-offs can
         be attributed largely to consolidation and down-sizing in tobacco production and continued
         contraction of the textile and apparel industries. While manufacturing continued to lose
         employment, the region‘s service sector added new jobs during that period. These service
         sector jobs were created primarily in military, healthcare, education, accommodation and



                                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil                                      -1-
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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         food service sectors. The region benefited economically from: increased demand for
         national security, an aging population, rising employment in high-skilled occupations, and
         greater consumer preferences for dining out and domestic travel.

         In 2002, active duty military employment surpassed manufacturing as the region‘s largest
         sector. In 2004, healthcare and social assistance became the second largest sector. These
         are the two fastest growing employment sectors. The healthcare industry, which includes
         ambulatory care, hospitals, nursing, and residential care facilities, now account for more
         than 10 percent of the region‘s employment. Military, healthcare and social services
         combine with retail trade, educational services, accommodations, and food services to
         account for over 50 percent of the region‘s employment base.

         National and regional economic trends suggest that manufacturing probably will never
         again be a major source of new job creation for the region, but this is not really a new
         phenomenon. The job losses in certain manufacturing industries began well before the
         2001-02 recession. The declines in these industries also continued well after the national
         economy began rebounding in 2004.

         Although the manufacturing sector represents a relatively small and declining proportion of
         the region‘s employment, the sector remains vital to the region‘s ability to create economic
         wealth. Many high wage service industries, such as professional, technical and
         management services, add their greatest value to the economy in support of production and
         manufactured goods. In the future, manufacturing will remain an important source of
         regional wealth creation, but likely will not be a large new job generator. Thus, it will be
         critical for regional leaders to understand which service industries are linked to the region‘s
         manufacturing base.

         Even though employment gains have been modest at best, the region continues to add
         residents. While healthy relative to the rest of the US, this growth has been slower than the
         state as a whole. Most of North Carolina‘s population growth during the first half of the
         decade occurred in the Raleigh and Charlotte metropolitan areas. In particular, Wake
         County‘s population grew by more than twice the state average. Between 2000 and 2004,
         Wake County added more than four net new people for every one net new resident in the
         ECC Region. This point is important for two reasons. First, the Raleigh-Durham area is a
         powerful economic force driving growth for the entire state of North Carolina. Second, the
         Research Triangle area represents a powerful economic magnet that draws people
         (especially talented young adults) seeking job opportunities in high-skilled occupations
         from the ECC Region. The Raleigh growth rate appears to be an unstoppable force, making
         it an important strategy consideration for the ECC region.

         The non-coastal counties (including Wayne, Lenoir, Jones, Greene and Duplin) consist of
         counties with traditionally agricultural and manufacturing economies. Of these, Wayne and
         Greene Counties are beginning to experiencing positive economic impacts from their
         proximity to the Raleigh-Durham area. The coastal counties (including Onslow, Carteret,
         Craven, and Pamlico) have water access and a substantial military presence to shore-up
         their lagging agriculture and manufacturing losses.



         -2-                                          EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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         Workforce Development

         A recent report on the region‘s work force by the Eastern Carolina Workforce
         Development Board, Inc. states that the region is at a critical point in its evolution. It goes
         on to say that no longer are communities competing just against neighboring communities,
         nearby regions, or even neighboring states. Communities are now competing against other
         nations in a global economy that is constantly changing. The region has weathered the
         changes of the new economy and it must now re-position itself to not only survive, but to
         thrive. To do so it must create a competitive advantage by developing strong community
         partnerships and identify a vision for the future.

         Population

         The region experienced slow population growth over the past decade, which must be met
         by innovative ways of keeping the labor force strong. There is a significant labor pool in
         the youth population, but It needs to be developed and prepared to support the needs of
         regional employers. Retaining the mid-career workers in the region will be vital to regional
         employers who need experienced and skilled labor. Fully utilizing the growing Hispanic
         workforce will help; the challenge will be integrating the Hispanic residents into other
         aspects of the communities.


                   ECC COUNTIES POPULATION TRENDS-PROJECTIONS
                                1990      2000      2010        2020
               NC          6,628,637 8,046,807 9,441,440  10,943,973
               ECC           522,112   565,578   610,333     652,956
               CARTERET       52,556    59,383    63,939      67,762
               CRAVEN         81,613    91,523    96,583     101,059
               DUPLIN         39,995    49,063    58,044      68,899
               GREENE         15,384    18,974    22,558      26,332
               JONES           9,414    10,403    10,661      11,276
               LENOIR         57,274    59,614    59,951      60,794
               ONLSOW        149,838   150,355   164,883     173,617
               PAMLICO        11,372    12,934    13,735      14,663
               WAYNE         104,666   113,329   119,979     128,554
         SOURCE: US Census Bureau




                                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil                                      -3-
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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                             Population Trends -% Increase
                        % INCREASE            % INCREASE                                   % INCREASE
                          1990-2000              2000-2010                                    2010-2020
          NC                     21.39%             17.33%                                       15.91%
          ECC                     8.33%              7.91%                                        6.98%
          CARTERET               12.99%              7.67%                                        5.98%
          CRAVEN                 12.14%              5.53%                                        4.63%
          DUPLIN                 22.67%             18.31%                                       18.70%
          GREENE                 23.34%             18.89%                                       16.73%
          JONES                  10.51%              2.48%                                        5.77%
          LENOIR                  4.09%              0.57%                                        1.41%
          ONLSOW                  0.35%              9.66%                                        5.30%
          PAMLICO                13.74%              6.19%                                        6.76%
          WAYNE                   8.28%              5.87%                                        7.15%
          SOURCE: US Census Bureau


         Clusters

         Occupational demands are changing in the region. Driving the change is advanced
         manufacturing and a service based economy that thrives on knowledge and skill. The
         largest growth will be in occupations requiring post-secondary training. Understanding the
         increased demand for skills and training is important to help maximize a cluster based
         strategy.

         According to the Workforce Development Board‘s 2006 State of the Workforce Report, the
         region has existing and emerging advantages in the following clusters: professional and
         business related services, marine related industries and research, pharmaceuticals,
         transportation equipment, auto electronics, and hospitality and tourism. If the region
         chooses to develop industry cluster initiatives, it must allow individual counties the
         opportunity of tailoring their needs to reflect local targets. This will allow the region to
         capitalize on specific assets such as military bases.

         As mentioned earlier, the region has a significant asset and potential industry cluster in the
         number of its military bases. The economic impact of the military bases reaches far beyond
         the boundaries of the installations themselves. The bases provide a significant number of
         jobs for civilian residents, and have contributed monetarily to the State, county agencies,
         and community organizations. They also act as hubs of economic activity by attracting and
         sustaining businesses through government contracts, in addition to their support of local
         businesses. The military installations house educational institutions that enhance personal
         growth, career development, and lead toward completion of associate, baccalaureate, and
         master degree programs. The military bases attract and train highly skilled personnel, and
         support the hospitality and tourism trade. Military installations in the region constitute their
         own industry cluster, and could also support and promote a new culture of entrepreneurship
         in the region.



         -4-                                          EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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         The region, like the nation, must continue to help students be more aware of the
         opportunities and necessary training levels they will need to succeed in the workforce. To
         help ensure that they have the skilled workers they need, employers must play a critical
         role by participating on boards and advisory panels, informing leaders about education and
         training needs, advising on curriculum, and promoting career awareness through job
         shadowing, internships, mentoring, and other relationships with the education system.

         Transportation

         To support and expand continuous economic growth, the region needs a well connected
         and sound physical infrastructure system to move goods and services quickly and
         efficiently to points inside and outside the region. Although two major Interstate highways
         (I-95 & I-40) skirt the region and several US highways run through the region, the existing
         physical infrastructure still poses challenges for potential growth.

         The lack of a fully inter-connected interstate-quality, four-lane highway system within the
         region has hindered economic interactions among the region‘s urban centers. This, in turn,
         has inhibited the development and/or utilization of other assets such as the seaport and
         airports.

         One of the region‘s most unique assets is the Port of Morehead City. With a 45-foot
         channel, the port is one of the deepest on the U.S. East Coast. The port is critical for
         national security, serving the US Marine Corps at Camp Lejeune. The port‘s primary
         access to the vital interstate freight transportation network of I-95 and I-40 is via US 70 and
         US 17 as well as daily train service to transport goods to its destinations. Continued
         investment in port development and facilities could enhance the opportunity for the region
         to become a major gateway for world shipping, but its success depends on improving four-
         lane highway access along US 70.

         In addition to highway access, the port‘s success also depends on waterway access. The
         region‘s pattern of natural channels requires continuous dredging to make travel for sea-
         going vessels possible. This dredging provides lanes for fishing vessels and recreational
         craft as well. The port‘s future as well as the region‘s fishing and leisure craft industries
         will also depend on the treatment given to silt building up.

         The region‘s proximity to water resources provides abundant opportunities for various
         tourism activities in the region, including fishing, boating and sailing. Like the port, the
         region‘s tourism potential may also rely on continued dredging as well as other
         infrastructure investments.

         Like the Port of Morehead City, the Global TransPark—envisioned as an inland port with
         superior air transportation—has also been limited by highway access. Given the choice
         about which transportation mode to address first, many Strategy Committee members felt
         that completing the US 70 upgrade was the most pressing issue facing the region because it
         impacts the Port, the Global TransPark and by extension the freight movement industry as
         well as tourism.




                                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil                                      -5-
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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         The challenges in moving US 70 forward were repeated in the region‘s fragmented (and
         often non-existent) public transportation system. Localized public transportation is mainly
         used to serve the needs of the elderly and disabled, but it is not available to the
         economically disadvantaged who may have no other means for traveling to work.

         Inter-city freight and passenger service is also limited by the quality of the area‘s air and
         rail transportation network. The region is well endowed with numerous airports with daily
         commercial service available at three area airports, including Albert J. Ellis Airport in
         Jacksonville, Craven County Regional Airport in New Bern, and the Kinston Regional
         Jetport at the Global TransPark. In fact, the physical facilities are quite good as illustrated
         by the Global TransPark‘s airport where one can find the longest commercial airway
         between Washington DC and Atlanta. However, the service is limited primarily to the hubs
         in Charlotte and Atlanta. The multiple airports pull traffic from one another and ironically
         all lose as local residents frequently travel to Raleigh-Durham and Wilmington for better
         and more affordable air transportation services. Because the area airports are spread widely
         across the region and serve small population catchment areas, air service is frequently
         inadequate to meet the demands of global businesses. Ironically, lack of interstate and
         major regional highways limit the market draw of each of these three smaller airports,
         including access to passenger and cargo facilities. While Strategy Committee members
         recognized this issue, they also viewed possible solutions – such as a single ―super-
         regional‖ airport in the region – as politically divisive.

         The region‘s freight rail system is fairly well developed, with a few important gaps –
         especially north-south between Goldsboro and Wilmington (where passenger rail
         opportunities may exist). The Strategy Committee noted that rail access hinders the
         region‘s competitiveness, particularly the inadequacy of the rail linkages to the Port at
         Morehead City.

         Addressing the highways issue, in particular, appears to have achieved the greatest
         consensus throughout the region. The regional stakeholders agree that they must be
         organized around common solutions if they are to achieve any effective solutions. This
         issue is particularly relevant for US 70 because progress may require unique ideas. The
         involvement of the military in completing US 70 upgrades not only has the benefit of
         bringing a very large and influential player to the table, but could offer a unique
         justification for improvements to US 70 that might open up new funding opportunities.
         The Strategy Committee also suggested that the Global TransPark is an invaluable resource
         whose success depends on continued facility and infrastructure investments as well as
         sustained marketing.

         Environment

         Central eastern North Carolina is rich in natural resources. The area has many rivers which
         flow to sounds, which flow to the Atlantic Ocean. The Intracoastal Waterway cuts through
         the eastern counties. The coastal area has a tourism based economy and hosts many
         ecotourism businesses.




         -6-                                          EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                 BACKGROUND
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         The nine counties comprising ECC‘s region are all included in the Central Coastal Plains
         Capacity Use Area (CCPCUA). Studies by the North Carolina Department of Environment
         and Natural Resources (NCDENR) Division of Water Resources (DWR) have
         demonstrated that withdrawals from the Cretaceous aquifers are occurring faster than the
         water is being recharged (NCDENR, 2000). Concern over declining water levels,
         decreasing well yield, and salt water intrusion into these aquifers prompted the
         Environmental Management Commission to designate the Central Coastal Plain Capacity
         Use Area (CCPCUA). The CCPCUA is a primarily rural area that includes 15 counties:
         Beaufort, Carteret, Craven, Duplin, Edgecombe, Greene, Jones, Lenoir, Martin, Onslow,
         Pamlico, Pitt, Washington, Wayne, and Wilson Counties; divided into three zones: the
         declining water level zone, aquifer dewatering zone, and salt water encroachment zone.
         The DWR has developed rules for the CCPCUA to protect the long term productivity of
         aquifers and to allow the use of groundwater at rates that do not exceed the recharge rate of
         the aquifer. The CCPCUA rules require permitting of water withdrawals >100,000 gpd,
         implementation of conservation measures, repositioning of pump intakes above the top of
         any confined aquifer, and reduction of Cretaceous aquifer withdrawals by up to 75% by
         2018. This has the potential to stifle growth and development in this region.

         Water quality is also an issue for the region. Regulations that address water quality include
         the Phase II regulations, Coastal Stormwater regulations and the Neuse River rules. These
         rules and regulation also impact growth and development and impact the cost of doing
         business in this region.

         Sewage treatment is likewise a growing problem. Because of the rural nature of counties in
         this region, sanitary sewer systems are not available in many areas. Residents and
         businesses depend on septic systems. Many of the existing wastewater treatment systems
         have outgrown their capacity; have outmoded technology; have crumbling collection
         systems; and have more and more regulation to contend with. The disposal of treated
         effluent is becoming more more of an issue due to lack of suitable area for land application.
         The Division of Water Quality is seeking to remove all pipes that empty treated effluent
         into receiving waters of the state.

         The coastal area contains sensitive habitats that must be protected. Wetland areas abound
         and there are restrictions on their use and development. All these factors combined make
         the coastal area a difficult place to locate industry of any size.

         Essential to the success of the region is that it must link and act as a single entity. There
         must be a connection between educational, environmental, workforce, economic and
         community development efforts. This connection will support growth and sustainability by
         helping communities function effectively.




                                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil                                      -7-
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
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         -8-                                         EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
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                                                       ANALYSIS
         II.      ANALYSIS

         Overview

         To gather information regarding issues facing counties in the ECC region, ECC and the
         CEDS committee partnered with North Carolina‘s Eastern Region to co-host information
         gathering meetings, which included both a visioning element and SWOT analysis. The
         meetings were attended by a wide variety of participants, including appointed officials,
         elected officials, community college presidents / representatives, workforce development
         interests, and private industry representatives.

         The co-hosted information gathering meetings were conducted by the Center for Regional
         Economic Competitiveness (CREC), a nationally recognized consultant with extensive
         experience in developing and implementing strategic plans. The ten-month effort included
         business surveys, focus group sessions, interviews with key community leaders, workforce
         development reviews and analysis, infrastructure study, strategic asset assessment and an
         in-depth business cluster analysis.

         The following sections on the Regional Economy (strengths and weaknesses) and External
         Forces (opportunities and threats) were developed with information and feedback from
         these and other meetings held in the region.

         Opportunities and Problems

         Opportunities

         Manufacturing base – Basic manufacturing remains an important part of the ECC
         economy. Employment in assembly, food processing and agribusiness firms sustain many
         local economies in the region. A review of the top ten manufacturers in each county turns
         up manufacturers like Electrolux, Lenox China, Cooper Standard Automotive, Moen
         Incorporated, Brunswick Corp, Bosch Home Appliances, and Atlantic Veneer Corp. In
         food processing / agribusiness, companies like Carolina Turkeys, Dean Specialty Foods,
         Murphy-Brown (hog production), Smithfield Packing, Styron Crab Company and Mount
         Olive Pickle are representative of the industry.

         Military Presence – The ECC region has three major military facilities. They include
         Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville (Onslow County), Marine Corps Air
         Station (MCAS) Cherry Point in Havelock (Craven County) and Seymour Johnson Air
         Force Base in Goldsboro (Wayne County). Employment at these military facilities
         represents a significant portion of the local job market. These facilities also contribute
         significantly to the local economy.

         The Naval Aviation Depot (NADEP) in Havelock is a tenant of the MCAS Cherry Point.
         The NADEP employs over 4,000 civilians and pays above average wages for the area.



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                       -9-
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
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         Agricultural land – Much of the ECC region remains rural, providing ample space for
         farming, recreation and other forms of development.

         Two major agricultural research stations are located in the region. With over 2,000 acres,
         Cherry Research Farm in Goldsboro is the largest experimental station in the region and
         houses the Center for Environmental Farming Systems. Funding from the North Carolina
         Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, North Carolina State University and
         North Carolina A&T State University supports the station. The Caswell Research Farm in
         Kinston has 1,400 acres and serves as a location for large plot research. It focuses
         particularly on long-term swine and dairy herd studies.

         Natural environment - Eastern North Carolina is blessed with four mild seasons. It is
         located about half way between New York and Florida. There are a number of rivers that
         flow through the region. They include the Neuse River, the New River, the Tar-Pamlico
         River, the Trent River and the White Oak River. There are several sounds in the coastal
         environment, of which Pamlico Sound is the largest. Coastal estuaries, rivers and creeks,
         along with the Atlantic Ocean, are sought after by tourists, developers and retirees.

         Community Colleges / 4-year institutions - There are seven community colleges in
         ECC‘s nine-county region and include:
         Carteret Community College located in Morehead City—Carteret County
         Coastal Carolina Community College located in Jacksonville—Onslow County
         Craven Community College located in New Bern—Craven County
         James Sprunt Community College located in Kenansville—Duplin County
         Lenoir Community College located in Kinston—Lenoir County
         Pamlico Community College located in Pamlico County
         Wayne Community College located in Goldsboro—Wayne County.

         Lenoir Community College has branches that serve Jones County and Greene County.

         East Carolina University is located in nearby Greenville and is a major hub for specialized
         medical diagnosis and treatment. Mount Olive College in Wayne County was founded by
         the Free Will Baptists and operates as a private, co-educational, liberal arts institution with
         academic programs in more than 40 majors.

         Cost of living – The area‘s rural nature and slow economic growth have kept the cost of
         living well below other areas of the country. In many communities the cost of housing is
         remarkably affordable.

         History, heritage, culture – The region‘s history, heritage and culture are unique to the
         area and of interest to tourists and other visitors. Many municipalities in the region have
         historic districts, museums and sites of historical interest for tourists to enjoy.




         - 10 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
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         Problems

         Effects of globalization – Products manufactured primarily for local and regional markets
         in a low skilled to semi-skilled environment, remain viable in the region. Manufacturers of
         labor intensive products for retail consumption, such as apparel have moved production
         off-shore. Manufacturers of technology based products, requiring a highly skilled
         workforce that demands big city amenities, are locating in urban areas around universities.
         This has left the ECC region, which is primarily rural and lacking in skilled workers with a
         stagnant economy. In the process, many local economies have become dependent on one or
         two industries.

         Educational attainment - The average educational attainment of residents in the ECC
         region is low compared to the State and the nation.

                      Location                             Population with Bachelor,
                                                         Graduate / Professional Degrees
            United States                                            24.5%
            North Carolina                                           22.5%
            ECC Region                                               13.9%
          Source: US Census Bureau

         Population Growth – According to US Census data, population growth between 1990 and
         2000 for the ECC region (8.33%) lagged behind North Carolina (21.39%). Projections for
         the 2000 to 2010 timeframe are 7.91% for the ECC region and 17.33% for North Carolina.
         Of particular concern is the actual loss of population in the 18 to 34 year-old age groups.

         Low wages – Traditionally low wages and incomes for the area‘s residents have slowed
         overall economic growth and prosperity in the region.

                           Location                        2003 Average Annual Wage
                           USA                                      $37,130
                           North Carolina                           $32,995
                           Carteret                                 $22,989
                           Craven                                   $30,647
                           Duplin                                   $22,393
                           Greene                                   $21,958
                           Jones                                    $25,816
                           Lenoir                                   $26,589
                           Onslow                                   $26,860
                           Pamlico                                  $22,378
                           Wayne                                    $27,407
                           Totals                                  $227,037
                           Average Wage                             $25,226
                                  Source: US Bureau of Economic Analysis




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 11 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
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         Transportation – The lack of interstate highways and other limited access roads in the
         region are an obstacle to both business and tourism development. The only county in the
         region with direct interstate access is Duplin County. There is only one public municipal
         transportation system in the region (Goldsboro). Every county has a public transit system,
         but their rider-ship is limited to the elderly and those needing transportation for medical or
         social services.

         If the region‘s economy is to develop with industry, tourism and retirees, regional jet
         service to multiple U.S. locations must be expanded. Ongoing restructuring in the airline
         industry continues to impact the frequency and number of airlines providing air service in
         New Bern and Jacksonville; currently both cities have air service to Charlotte by U.S. Air
         and to Atlanta by Delta.

         Infrastructure – Slow population, employment and wage growth have resulted in little or
         no revenue growth for area governments. In combination with increased operating costs,
         regulatory requirements and unfunded mandates, many local governments are struggling to
         provide services and maintain the local infrastructure. Mandated reductions in water
         withdrawal from a major regional aquifer will increase water costs for many of these
         already poor communities. Wastewater is also an issue for towns with old systems and for
         developing areas with soil conditions that do not easily allow for septic tanks. Future
         requirements for stormwater runoff and other coastal habitat protection plans will also
         increase infrastructure costs for local governments.

         Employment growth – According to the NC Employment Security Commission five of
         ECC‘s nine counties lost employment from 2000 to 2004. Overall the region‘s employment
         grew by 1.86% for the period and is well below the State‘s growth rate of 3.47% and the
         nation‘s growth rate of 3.38% for the same time frame.

         Opportunities and Threats

         Opportunities

         World markets – Businesses in the ECC region do not export products to world markets at
         rate seen across North Carolina or the nation. While US consumers are benefiting from low
         cost imports, foreign markets present an opportunity for regional businesses to export
         unique US made products. The weak US dollar, combined with expanding foreign markets
         and growing world-wide wealth, are making US products attractive abroad. With the
         Global TransPark in the region and a port facility in Morehead City, exporting to world
         markets is a real opportunity.

         Tourism – Tourism is recognized as one of the growth industries in North Carolina. The
         ECC region is blessed with many natural resources that are attractive to tourists and others
         seeking outdoor recreational opportunities. Eco-tourism, agro-tourism, and historic /
         cultural / heritage tourism all present opportunities for the region.




         - 12 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
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         Retirees – With an estimated 10,000 baby boomers turning 50 every day, eastern North
         Carolina‘s mild climate, scenic beauty, recreational opportunities and location half way
         between Florida and the North East are assets appealing to potential retirees. This segment
         of the population born between 1946 and 1964 comprises approximately 33% of the
         population; they own 70% of US assets and control 50% of all discretionary income.

         Retirees bring incomes, spending, tax revenues and assets into a community. The primary
         economic beneficiary‘s of retirees are real estate, recreation / entertainment, healthcare,
         insurance, commercial / retail establishments and financial services. It is estimated that 100
         retirees have an economic impact 3.5 times greater than 100 manufacturing employees and
         do not require large incentives. In addition they bring benefits such as volunteerism,
         chartable giving, skills and diversity without impacting the school system and law
         enforcement. Most retirees visited a place several times or served locally in the military
         before retiring, which makes tourism and military relations important parallel strategies.
         Most people who relocate to retire are healthier and wealthier than those that do not
         relocate. On the negative side, community services to the very old may increase social
         costs to communities.

         North Carolina Global TransPark – The Global TransPark has been under development
         since the early 1990‘s and represents an $85 million investment in infrastructure and
         permitting. Today the Global TransPark, located in the center of the region, represents a
         major asset and opportunity for economic development.

         The master plan for the Global TransPark includes integrated transportation systems
         supported by the latest technology, on-site training and high-speed communications. The
         Global TransPark has in place a new runway extension out to 11,500 feet, a newly-built
         cargo building alongside the runway and serves as a Foreign Trade Zone.

         The Global TransPark features an on-site education and training center, along with
         available land and flexible industrial space to accommodate almost any requirement.

         Marine Industries, Sciences and Education - For centuries, the region has been a hub for
         boat builders. From recreational ski boats to commercial fishing vessels, the industry
         remains strong -- so strong that regional leaders see a wealth of development opportunities
         among suppliers to the industry. Boat building, one of North Carolina‘s earliest industry
         clusters, thrives in coastal areas of the region. The North Carolina Marine Trades
         Education Center at Carteret Community College represents a major asset in support of the
         cluster‘s growth. The 25,000-square-foot facility is a center for marine trades training, from
         fiberglass molding and marine electrical systems to hydraulics and propulsion. The
         building was made possible in part by US Department of Commerce Economic
         Development Administration funding.

         There is also considerable opportunity to further develop marine sciences in the coastal
         areas of the region. North Carolina‘s three major research universities – Duke, N.C. State
         and U.N.C.-Chapel Hill – each maintain sizable research centers in and around Morehead
         City. The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Center for



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 13 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Coastal Fisheries and Habitat Research is based there along with state marine fisheries
         operations, a North Carolina aquarium and community college aquaculture curriculum. In
         2003, these and other entities joined local development leaders in forming the North
         Carolina Marine Science and Educational Partnership (MSEP) as part of a drive to foster
         collaborative opportunities. According to a recent study by UNC‘s Office of Economic
         Development, MSEP's nine institutional members employ 401 people in Carteret County
         and have a payroll of $17 million.

         Port – With the volume of international trade expected to double by 2020, having a port
         facility in the region presents a real opportunity for economic growth. The 45-foot deep
         channel at the Port of Morehead City makes it one of the deepest ports on the U.S. East
         Coast. Only four miles from the ocean, the port handles break-bulk and bulk cargo with
         access to Interstates 95 and 40 via U.S. Highways 70 and 17, and daily train service from
         Norfolk Southern. Across the Newport River from the port is Radio Island, a prime site for
         development. The Ports Authority is offering approximately 150 acres suitable for port
         industrial development, complete with municipal water and sewer and a North Carolina
         approved Environmental Impact Statement for marine terminal development.

         Home products cluster – ECC‘s mid-Atlantic east coast location combined with existing
         and projected residential development driven by baby boomers looking to retire on or near
         the coast, makes everything associated with construction an opportunity for the region.
         Existing manufactures and assemblers of appliances, cabinets, plumbing products and
         house hold goods represent a real opportunity for the region.

         Growing Hispanic population – The region‘s vision to strengthen its foundation of
         manufacturing and agricultural assets is supported by a growing Hispanic population. The
         relocation of basic manufacturing and agricultural production to lower cost countries has
         necessitated innovation and cost cutting in many eastern North Carolina businesses. The
         growing Hispanic population has allowed area business to stay competitive by employing a
         lower cost Hispanic labor pool. Hispanics work in many regional firms but are
         concentrated in the construction, food processing, agriculture and fishing industries.

         Threats

         Lack of diversification – The lack of economic diversification threatens both local
         governments and the region as a whole. The greatest of these threats comes from a large
         military presence in the Cities of Jacksonville, Havelock and Goldsboro. Recent Base
         Realignment and Closure Commission announcements have not drastically impacted these
         bases, but future actions are always a concern. Large deployments from the bases have had
         and will continue to substantially impact these military dependent communities.

         The economic vitality of many other communities in the region is dependent on one or two
         large industries.

         Coastal environment – Where the region‘s coastal environment is an attraction for
         development, it also presents several threats. For example, seasonal hurricanes make the



         - 14 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         area unattractive to some potential residents and businesses. Area beaches are also prone to
         erosion from storms, currents and natural shifts, which for many communities have been
         remedied by federal and State funds allocated for beach nourishment. As federal and State
         budgets get tighter, there is the threat of funding losses, shifting the cost to local
         governments. Beach erosion affects not only residents but the area's attractiveness for
         tourism and retirees. Continuous dredging of local inlets has also been deemed costly and
         in some cases prohibitive by the Army Corps of Engineers, again affecting residents,
         tourists and retirees.

         Regional unity – Many young people who leave the region to further their education or
         find employment do not return, reducing the number of indigenous residents to replace
         previous generations. At the same time, retirees and owners of second homes are moving to
         the area. Add to this the increasing number of Hispanic workers and the makeup of many
         communities is changing considerably. As new residents move into positions of leadership,
         tension between indigenous people and transplants can be disruptive.

         There is also a growing disparity between affluent coastal communities and inland rural
         areas that continue to loose population and economic wellbeing. Regional projects that
         require collaboration are going to suffer unless area residents and governments can work
         through the issue of economic disparity.

         Relevant regional plans and workforce development strategies

         Several regional strategic planning efforts have been completed in the past several years
         and remain relevant to this current CEDS.

         State of the Workforce Report, Eastern Carolina Workforce Development Board, Inc. 2006.

         Summary – The Eastern North Carolina Region has weathered the sweeping changes of the
         new economy and it must now reposition itself to not only survive but to thrive. To do so it
         must create a competitive advantage by developing strong community partnerships and
         identify a vision for the future.

         The region experienced a slow population growth over the last decade, which must be met
         by innovative ways to keep the labor force strong. There is a significant labor pool in the
         youth population, but it needs to be developed and prepared to support the needs of
         regional employers.

         Occupational demands are changing in the region. Driving the change is the advanced
         manufacturing and service based economy, which thrives on knowledge and skill. The
         largest growth will be in occupations requiring post-secondary training. Understanding the
         increased demand for skills and training is important to help maximize a cluster-based
         strategy. The region has existing and emerging advantages in the following clusters:
         professional and business related services, marine related industries and research,
         pharmaceuticals, transportation, auto electronics manufacturing, and hospitality and
         tourism.



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 15 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Essential to the success of the Eastern Carolina Region is that it must think and act as a
         single entity. There must be a connection between educational, environmental, workforce,
         economic and community development efforts. This connection will support growth and
         sustainability by helping communities function effectively. The region must connect these
         elements to generate jobs, community health, and innovation in the 21st century.

         A Vision Plan for North Carolina’s Eastern Region, prepared by: Strategic Planning
         Committee, with assistance from the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness, Eva
         Klein & Associates Ltd., May 2006.

         Summary: Eastern Carolina Council staff and CEDS Strategy Committee members served
         extensively on the Strategic Planning Committee. A grant from EDA was instrumental in
         providing input to the Vision Plan by funding 100 in-depth private sector interviews. The
         ECC 2007 CEDS was developed in cooperation with North Carolina‘s Eastern Region
         Vision Plan process and provides the basis for cooperation in its implementation. The ECC
         2007 CEDS was developed to meet U.S. Department of Commerce EDA requirements but
         in content and strategy reflects the jointly developed economic development strategies of
         the Vision Plan process.

         Eastern North Carolina’s Economy, The Economic Impact of Five Sectors –
         Manufacturing, Government, Military, Agriculture, & Tourism; East Carolina University
         Regional Development Institute, September 2002.

         Summary – To emphasize the role of payroll dollars in eastern North Carolina‘s economy,
         East Carolina University‘s Regional Development Institute (RDI) conducted research on
         the comparative economic influence and impact of payrolls in the five most influential
         economic sectors. The study also compared the actual level of influence with the public‘s
         perception of the sector‘s importance. The study includes all nine ECC counties along with
         other counties located east of Interstate 95. According to the report, the following five
         sectors, ranked by economic influence, include:

         Manufacturing – Of the five economic sectors, manufacturing impacts eastern North
         Carolina‘s economy the most. The manufacturing sector provides nearly 40 percent of all
         payroll dollars in eastern North Carolina. Even though manufacturing is the most important
         economic sector, it is perceived as second, behind agriculture.

         Government – Payrolls of the government sector, especially when combined with the
         military sector, represent the second largest portion of impact dollars in the region. Public
         perception ranked the government third.

         Military – Ranked third, the military‘s combined impact on goods, services and earnings is
         $6.7 billion in eastern North Carolina. Public perception ranked the military fifth.

         Agriculture – Agriculture is the fourth most important economic sector and its overall
         influence is widespread, but it does not have the payroll-based dollars that recycle directly




         - 16 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         trough the region‘s economy. The majority of the survey population thinks agriculture is
         the most important sector.

         Tourism – Though very prominent in several coastal counties, tourism does not have the
         impact of other payrolls. Of the five sectors, tourism ranks fifth, with the public ranking it
         fourth.

         An Economic and Demographic Profile for North Carolina’s Eastern Region, Market
         Street Services, Inc., December 4, 2003

         North Carolina‘s Eastern Region contracted with Market Street Services, a national
         economic and workforce consulting firm headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, to gain a better
         understanding of where the region is today, to improve its marketing tools and to update its
         strategic plan. North Carolina‘s Eastern Region encompasses 13 counties and includes all
         of ECC‘s nine member counties. An Economic and Demographic Profile for North
         Carolina’s Eastern Region is the first of several reports produced by Market Street
         Services, Inc.; summaries of the other documents follow.

         Summary – The report concludes with five major opportunities / challenges.

         1. From 1990 to 2000, the region lagged significantly behind North Carolina and the
         United States in terms of population growth.

         2. The labor participation rate for the region is well below that of North Carolina and the
         United States.

         3. Nearly half of the employment in the region is comprised of the Government,
         Manufacturing, and Retail Trade sectors.

         4. Post-Secondary education in the region lags behind the State and nation.

         5. The overall social and economic well-being of the region varies substantially from
         county to county.

         Target Business Analysis for North Carolina’s Eastern Region, Market Street Services,
         Inc., February 19, 2004

         Summary – The report identifies seven target industry sectors that include: healthcare, food
         processing, tourism, marine trades, government, chemical manufacturing / life sciences
         research and wholesale trade.

         Marketing Recommendations for North Carolina’s Eastern Region, Market Street Services
         Inc., February 9, 2004




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 17 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Summary – Marketing recommendations included improving existing website, personal
         contacts and public relations strategies.

         City of Kinston and Lenoir County Strategic Economic Development Plan, The Sanford
         Holshouser Business Development Group, LLC, December 2004.

         Summary – S.W.O.T. analysis participants identified Kinston‘s major strengths as the
         Global TransPark (GTP), a strong healthcare industry, excellent utilities / capacity for
         growth, and a pro-business mayor and city council. Weaknesses cited include the low
         educational attainment statistics and a perception that the city has failed to address racial
         divisions. The principal opportunities for Kinston are tied to the successes of the GTP and
         in developing a formal existing industry and business support program. Although regional
         in nature, the most severe threat to Kinston‘s economic development future is the military‘s
         2006 or future Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process.

         Sanford Holshouser collaborated with Whittaker Associates, Inc., an economic
         development lead generation firm, to develop a target industry analysis. They
         recommended the following industry sectors as primary targets for recruitment: plastics,
         healthcare services, fabricated metals and machinery, food processing, and tourism /
         hospitality.

         Pamlico County Marine Business Park Feasibility Study and Marine Industry Market
         Analysis, The Sanford Holshouser Business Development Group, LLC, February 2004

         Summary – The study identifies Pamlico County‘s greatest assets as the magnificent
         natural resources found within Pamlico Sound and its rivers, creeks and bays. Because the
         County‘s economy is primarily based on fishing, farming and water recreation, and because
         the fishing industry and farming are in decline, water recreation is the wave of the future.
         The report recommends that Pamlico County leaders concentrate on amenities to improve
         the retirement and tourism industries while developing a stable, job-creating business
         element that includes the proposed marine business park.

         Duplin County 2002 Strategic Plan for Economic Recovery and Land Use, funded by a
         N.C. Rural Center Grant and supported by the N.C. Department of Commerce, 2002

         Summary – A county-wide steering committee identified four issues to promote the growth
         of Duplin County. The issues included community building, community facilities,
         economic development and education. Once the issue areas were established, task forces
         were recruited to address each issue. Task force members represented Duplin County
         geographically, racially and demographically.

         Craven 2006: Strategically Planning for the New Millennium, Craven County Future, Inc.,
         an update of Craven County 2001: Previewing the Future.

         Summary - The 2006 Committee and public participants chose to focus on three issues:
         education, the environment and economic development. A mission statement was



         - 18 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         developed for each issue: Education, ―To enhance all levels of learning and prepare our
         community and families for the demands of the twenty-first century through the
         cooperative use of all resources available to Craven County.‖ Environment, ―To improve,
         conserve, protect and use the environment in ways that ensure long term social,
         environmental and economic benefits for Craven County,‖ Economic development, ―To
         create prosperity and stability in Craven County‘s economy through emphasis on retention
         and growth in desirable sectors of business and industry.‖

         Defense Industry Demand Analysis; Presented to the North Carolina Military Business
         Center, a component of the N.C. Community College System, June 1, 2006

         Summary – The report presents a compelling case for viewing the U.S. military as a high
         growth industry, one that brings new opportunities to North Carolina. While the Sate
         currently lags other military states in the U.S., the good news is that N.C. has successfully
         expanded its defense sector over the past five years. Given the State‘s depth of
         manufacturing industries and workforce and the military‘s high demand for manufactured
         goods, defense is a natural target for the State‘s economic development effort.

         Past, Present and Future Economic Development Investments

         EDA Investments Past, Present and Future

         Past:

         Between 1966 and 2007, EDA invested in 47 projects in the ECC region for a total of
         $29,220,664. These projects included water, sewer, educational facilities, convention
         centers, airport facilities and business incubators. A few of these projects were funded as
         part of the economic recovery after hurricanes (New Bern Convention Center, Kinston
         Business Incubator and the Havelock Visitor‘s Center).

         Present:

         Presently there is one EDA project in the process of closing out—renovation of the
         Manufacturing Technology Center at Craven Community College. Another EDA funded
         project—Life Care Training Center at Pamlico Community College is still in process and
         should complete in December 2007. EDA funding for these two projects is $2,052,000

         Future:

         Because of the changes in EDA funding eligibility, fluctuations in EDA regional funding
         allocations and match requirements, it is anticipated that between 2008 and 2012 there will
         be five EDA funded projects in ECC‘s region for an anticipated $4,500,000 EDA
         investment in the region.




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 19 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         ECC‘s region is home to three major military facilities: Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune,
         Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. A major
         change at any one of these bases could result in the need for EDA Special Needs funding.

         Coastal North Carolina is prone to the effects from hurricanes and Nor‘easters. These
         storms have the potential to devastate a coastal community‘s economy. In ECC‘s region
         there are four counties that are considered coastal. EDA funding may be needed to recover
         from the effects of a major storm.

         Other Regional investments past, present and future:

         The North Carolina university system has invested millions of dollars in the research labs
         and training facilities located in the Morehead City and Beaufort areas of Carteret County.
         They are working in concert with the Carteret County Economic Development Council to
         develop a Marine Science cluster to benefit the coastal counties.

         Carteret County EDC is also working on a Marine Trades cluster to expand the boat-
         building trades and related industries in the area. There are some concerns about the loss of
         waterway access, the loss of marinas that provide services to the boating public, and the
         loss of transient dockage. With the increased cost of energy, all these factors may result in
         a decrease in the number of boaters. It is anyone‘s guess right now as to which way this
         will go.

         Craven County and the City of New Bern have been steadily increasing their
         manufacturing jobs and private sector investment. Craven Community College has
         enlarged its manufacturing training facilities to accommodate the need for trained workers
         at the various local manufacturing facilities. The BSH plant which makes home appliances
         had recently undergone a significant expansion. If the economy continues to be strong, the
         local manufacturing facilities and the cluster industries they are attracting to the area
         should continue to sustain the current level of employment.

         The region, especially along the coast, continues to attract tourists and to make tourism
         related investments. Local events, lodging facilities, eating establishments and retail stores
         benefit from visitors to the area. The tourist season here in North Carolina is primarily
         between Memorial Day and Thanksgiving Day. While large numbers of people are
         employed during the tourist season, these jobs are not well-paying and offer few other
         benefits. They do offer students and low-income workers the opportunity to get work
         experience, however.

         Every county in ECC‘s region is faced with crumbling infrastructure that will require
         significant investment to correct. Most water and sewer systems are at capacity and/or they
         are in need of significant upgrades. The sewer collection lines are very old and are feeling
         the effects of inflow and infiltration. The water distribution lines are springing leaks.
         Several counties are under state mandates to decrease their withdrawals from certain
         aquifers. Drought conditions have the potential to impact the availability of water for
         industries needing it for processing (e.g., meat processing plants in Duplin County). More



         - 20 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                                      ANALYSIS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         than any other issue, water and sewer problems have the capacity to halt growth and
         industrial development in the region.

         The coastal counties of ECC‘s region are undergoing residential and commercial
         development pressures associated with an aging population looking to retire. Developments
         are springing up at an unprecedented rate. More are on the drawing board. These
         developments have the potential to negatively impact water quality and are straining local
         infrastructure (roads, water, sewer, schools, public safety, and health care). These
         developments are attracting retirees from the northeast and those retirees wishing to move
         out of Florida. Positive aspects of this growth are the increase tax base and the increase in
         jobs needed to serve these new residents. Some of those jobs will be professional
         (accountants, bankers, realtors, health care providers).

         The Global TransPark in Kinston is positioned as a regional industrial hub. It includes an
         airport capable of handling jets. The State of North Carolina has a significant investment in
         the TransPark. In spite of an aggressive marketing campaign, the TransPark has not
         fulfilled its projections for job creation.

         Port of Morehead City: The planning for a new port terminal on Radio Island will move
         into its next phase during 2007 as construction activity picks up. The North Carolina State
         Ports Authority Board of Directors approved contracts covering several projects in
         Morehead City. Development of a new port terminal on Radio Island is proceeding to the
         next phase. Phase 2 of the Radio Island port development will include solicitation of
         prospective private partners, along with additional civil and structural engineering design
         and terminal layout planning.

         Work continues to progress on the Port‘s new 177,000 square foot warehouse. The Board
         authorized modifications to the building‘s storm water infrastructure to provide for
         capturing 100 percent of the roof runoff with an underground infiltration system. These
         improvements contributed to the development of the new paved open storage that includes
         the former Port Operations complex.

         A new 177,000-square foot warehouse is under construction at the Port of Morehead City.
         The warehouse, being built by Duke Realty, is on schedule for completion by late summer,
         2007. Marketing efforts are under way, with a direct-mail campaign to potential customers.




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 21 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                     GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________




         - 22 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                     GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                                          GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
         III.     GOALS & OBJECTIVES


         Goal I. – Develop knowledge capacity of regional residents and institutions to promote
         lifelong education as a core value of the region‘s citizens

                  Objective I. A. - Develop a regional education policy and targets for increased
                  educational attainment and a culture for learning

                  Objective I. B. - Expand the existing base of ―special-focus‖ education and
                  training opportunities for adults consistent with regional industry clusters

         Goal II. – Foster an innovative business creation environment that embraces an
         entrepreneurial culture and that creates and nourishes home grown businesses capable of
         continuously providing new and innovative goods and services

                  Objective II. A. - Cultivate entrepreneurs as a major source of economic growth
                  for the region

                  Objective II. B. - Invest in promoting improvements in efforts to retain and grow
                  the region‘s existing businesses

         Goal III. – Develop a global image for eastern North Carolina that promotes its
         competitive location for business and defines the region‘s competitive advantages in the
         global economy

                  Objective III. A. - Create a cogent, cohesive regional marketing brand for
                  business development in the ECC Region

                  Objective III. B. - Update the concept of the Global TransPark as a valued
                  ―knowledge-economy‖ asset

                  Objective III. C. - Focus marketing and business development to attract
                  companies in the targeted clusters

         Goal IV. – Develop urban and outdoor amenities that create an attractive environment in
         which businesses and citizens can live, work and play

                  Objective IV. A. - Sustain an ecological environment that ensures adequate
                  capacity and quality to reinforce the region‘s growth strategy

                  Objective IV. B. - Continue efforts to enhance lifestyle amenities

                  Objective IV. C. - Convene a permanent regional tourism partnership



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 23 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                     GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Goal V. – Improve the region‘s connectivity to establish easy, affordable access to move
         people, goods and information throughout the region and to other regions

                  Objective V. A. - Provide resources and advocacy to complete highest priority
                  highway transportation initiatives

                  Objective V. B. - Increase investment in dredging and beach nourishment along
                  the Intracoastal Waterway

                  Objective V. C. - Promote universal access to high speed, low cost broadband
                  service

         Goal VI. – Improve regional governance to develop collaborative leadership that
         encourages active participation in identifying and solving regional issues

                  Objective VI. A. - Align the ECC economic development goals with those of the
                  NCER and other regional partners to provide a unified plan for regional economic
                  development

                  Objective VI. B. - Manage and monitor CEDS implementation




         - 24 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                      COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                        COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION

         IV.      COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION

         The Eastern Carolina Council (ECC) developed its 2007 CEDS in cooperation with North
         Carolina‘s Eastern Region (NCER) and its legislative mandate to develop and implement a
         Vision Plan for the region. NCER is one of seven economic development partnerships in
         North Carolina, which contains all nine of ECC‘s member counties.

         As part of their Vision Plan process, NCER contracted with the Center for Regional
         Economic Competitiveness (CREC), a nonprofit economic development consulting
         organization affiliated with George Mason University, to research, review and summarize
         the key economic issues facing the region. CREC collaborated with Dr. Edward Feser of
         the University of Illinois to conduct a cluster study, and Ms. Eva Klein of Eva Klein &
         Associates to analyze the region‘s workforce assets and to facilitate the planning process
         with regional stakeholders.

         Over the period of a year, NCER/ ECC convened a diverse group of public and private
         sector stakeholders who provided input from across the region. ECC worked with NCER
         and the consultants to recruit more than 50 business, academic, and government leaders
         from across the region to provide input into the ECC CEDS and NCER‘s Vision Plan.

         Participants included:

         Mr. Ronald Nowaczyk, East Carolina University
         Dr. Edward Bright, North Carolina's Eastern Region Commission
         Mr. Arliss Albertson, Duplin County Commissioner
         Ms. Monika Barkley, Phoenix Construction Company
         Mr. Jack Best, Jr., Wayne County Commissioner
         Mr. Jim Blount, Foundation on the Renewal of Eastern North Carolina (FoR ENC)
         Dr. John Bray, Metrics, Inc.
         Mr. Paul Brewer, Southern Bank
         Dr. Brantley Briley, Lenoir Community College
         Mr. Doug Brinson, Pamlico County Commissioner
         Mr. Joel Butler, University Health Systems
         Dr. J. William Byrd, Mount Olive College
         Ms. Carla Byrnes, B and B Yacht Designs
         Mr. Joey Carter, Mine Safety Appliances
         Ms. Tammy Childers, Eastern Carolina Workforce Development Board, Inc.
         Ms. Lynda Clay, Clay Interiors, Inc.
         Col. Leonard Coleman, 4th Mission Support Group Commander
         Maj. Gen. Robert Dickerson, Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune
         Dr. Shirley Dove, Lenoir Community College
         Mr. Jimmie Edmundson, BB&T City Executive
         Frank Emory, Jones County Commissioner
         Mr. Rick Eggerding, Tiara Yachts



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 25 -
         2007 CEDS                                      COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Ms. Mary Beth Fennell, NADEP – Naval Air Depot
         Mr. Tom Fife, James Sprunt Community College
         Mr. David Flagler, Carteret Community College
         Mr. Gerald Foreman, Foreman Aviation
         Mr. Denny Garner, Greene County Commissioner
         Mr. Bruce Gombar, Onslow County Economic Development
         Mr. George Graham, Jr., Lenoir County Commissioner
         Mr. Don Harris, Eastern Carolina Workforce Development Board, Inc.
         Mr. Richard Harris, Alliance One International
         Mr. John Heeden, Southern Bank
         Mr. John Hoover, Vertical Lift Center of Excellence Program
         Mr. Phillip Horne, FoR ENC
         Mr. Dave Inscoe, Carteret County Economic Development
         Ms. Freda Jones, Rebuilding Broken Places
         Ms. Nancy Kalm, Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune
         Mr. John Keely, Cooper Standard Automotive
         Ms. Chikako Massey, Director, Japan Center East
         Col. William A. Meier, Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune
         Mr. Hugh Overholt, Ward and Smith, P.A.
         Ms. Mona Padrick, Jacksonville-Onslow Chamber of Commerce
         Mr. Juvenico Rocha Peralta, Jr., Carolina Turkeys
         Ms. Donna Phillips, NC Department of Commerce
         Mr. Mark Phillips, DSM Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
         Dr. Ed Piper, Onslow Memorial Hospital
         Mr. Lonnie Pridgen, Pridgen Property Management
         Mr. Kim Quinn, Prima Tech USA
         Mr. Joe Ramirez, GS-13
         Col Richard Reed, Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune
         Mr. Chris Roberson, Greene County Economic Development
         Mr. David Rosado, Eastern Carolina Council of Governments
         Ms. Carol Ann Rossi, Kidde Aerospace
         Dr. Lawrence Rouse, James Sprunt Community College
         Mr. Arthur Schools, Jr., Tourism Development Authority
         Mr. Donald Stewart, Neuse River Development Authority
         Ms. Joanna Thompson, Wayne County Economic Development
         Mr. David Tilly, Tiara Yachts
         Ms. Pat Toomey, Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune
         Ms. Darlene Waddell, Global TransPark Authority
         Mr. Jim Wall, Cooper Standard Automotive
         Mr. William Whaley, Jr., First Citizens Bank

         Also, with a grant from the Economic Development Administration to NCER, the Eastern
         Carolina Council conducted 90 in-depth business surveys.




         - 26 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                      COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Survey Participants included:

         Carteret County
         Mr. Phil Organ, Manager, ZFI Marine
         Mr. Deane Zurawski, Gregory Poole Marine Power
         Mr. Terry Frank, President, Frank Door Company
         Mr. Billy Parrott, Plant Leader, Owens Corning – Tremball Asphalt
         Mr. Randall Ramsey, President, Jarrett Bay Boatworks
         Mr. Russell Norris, Operations Manager, Parker Marine Enterprises, Inc.
         Ms. Virginia Thompson, Director of Sales, Royal Pavillion Resort
         Mr. Mark Suber, General Manager, Henry‘s Tackle (sporting goods distributor)
         Mr. Ken Hawkins, SPX Air Treatment
         Ms. Phyllis Henry, Sea Striker
         Mr. Donnie Jones, Owner, Jones Brothers (boat building)
         Dr. Michael Orback, Duke Marine Lab
         Mr. John J. Govoni, NOAA
         Dr. Rick Luettick, UNC Marine Science

         Craven County
         Mr. Richard Niewenhous, Owner, Window Coverings
         Mr. Nathan Smith, Project Manager, Carolina Home Exteriors
         Mr. Milt Gold, Amital Spinning Corporation
         Mr. Chuck Dail, BSH Home Appliances
         Mr. Bill Ferguson, Chatsworth Products
         Mr. David Brieley, HR Director, Maola Milk & Ice Cream
         Mr. Kelly Moore, Urethane Innovators, Inc.
         Mr. Martin Kean, Carolina Technical Plastics
         Mr. Bill Naumann, Hatteras Yachts
         Mr. Karl Schwerer, Kal-Tech
         Mr. Bart Rovins, Moen Inc.
         Mr. Fred Goeckerman, Thermik Corp
         Ms. Helen Mijajlovic, Craven PreCast Products
         Mr. Earl Delmastro, Naval Aviation Depot
         Mr. Curtis Pope, Production Manager, Tandemloc
         Comfort Suites
         Sheraton Grand

         Duplin County
         Mr. Bob Nolan, VP Automotive Division, Guilford Mills
         Mr. Bill Scott, Plant manager, Bay Valley Foods
         Mr. Jerome Sheppard, Plant Manager, National Spinning
         Ms. Lynda Barr, Precision Hydraulic Cylinders, Inc.
         Mr. Dan Blackshear, Carolina Turkeys
         Mr. Earl Brinkly, Sr., Accu Track Logistics
         Mr. John Dickerson, Amilon
         Mr. Gene Wickline, Industrial Hydraulics



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 27 -
         2007 CEDS                                      COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Greene County
         Mr. Chad Tyson, ECS
         Mr. Andy Moye, Greene Natural Fibers
         Mr. Bobby Ham, Ham‘s Produce Company
         Mr. Tony Holloman, JAK Mouldings
         Mr. Hardy Moore, Moore‘s Fiberglass
         Mr. Ralph Kerrigan, NWL
         Mr. Buzz Shackleford, Tide Tamer Industries
         Mr. Dean Nelson, UAP Southeast

         Jones County
         Mr. William Luzzi, Vice-President, Troy/ARBCO Industries, Inc.
         Mr. Frank Bender, Owner, Bender-Burkot East Coast School Supply
         Mr. Hunter Williams, Operations Manager, Marine and Industrial Plastics
         Ms. Marion Plocica, Office Manager, M & W Signs
         Mr. George Koonce, Owner, The NC Eel Farm
         Mr. Bill Hoisington, Coastal Beverage

         Lenoir County
         Mr. Frank Cowley, Chairman, Spice Bouquet, Inc.
         Mr. Bill Rose, Owner, Commercial A/C Services
         Mr. Bill Hunneke, Vice President, Domestic Fabrics Corp.
         Mr. Elwood Whaley, Owner E & R, Inc.
         Mr. Gary Cockerham, Plant Manager, Gilbarco, Inc.
         Mr. Rod Matthews, Manager, Southern Vinyl, Inc.
         Mr. John Short, General Manager, Farval Lubrication Systems
         Mr. Patrick Holleran, President, Field Controls, LLC
         Mr. Greg Carroll, Product Development, Invista
         Mr. Steve Woolard, General Manger, MasterBrand Cabinets, Inc.
         Mr. Bob Burdick, Mountain Air Cargo
         Mr. Terry O‖Rourke, Manager, Smithfield Packing Company
         Mr. Richard Davis, President, Wall Lenk Corporation

         Onslow County
         Mr. Thomas Wilson, Deployable Shelter Systems
         Mr. Joey Carter, Plant Manager, Mine Safety Appliances
         Mr. Richard Pasqualone, Plant Manager, Stanadyne Automotive Corp
         Mr. Bob Morris and Mr. Jeff Morris, Owners, Advanced Machine Group
         Mr. Scott Evans, Owner, Edgeworks
         Mr. Joe Johnston, Owner, Fiberglass International, Inc.
         Mr. David Slikkers, President, Tiara Yachts
         ConAgra Foods
         Omega World Travel




         - 28 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                      COMMUNITY AND PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Pamlico County
         Mr. Bobby Prescott, Owner, Prescott Brothers Marine Construction, Inc.
         Ms. Lisa Scott, Co-Owner, Scott Plumbing and Heating
         Ms. Teresa Flowers, Owner, Custom Steel Boats
         Mr. Larry Gwaltney, Owner, Sail Loft Realty
         Mr. John Deaton, Owner, Deaton Yacht Services
         Mr. Alfred Cahoon, Owner, Cahoon‘s Variety Store

         Wayne County
         Franklin Baking Company
         Mr. Larry Buchtmann, Vice President, Manufacturing, Acme United Corp
         General Industries
         Mr. Tim Taylor, Vice President and General Manager, APV Heat Transfer
         Mr. John Keely, Plant Manager, Cooper Standard Automotive, Inc.
         Mr. Vange Proimos, President, Goerlich‘s
         Mr. Terry Derrico, President, IMPulse, NC, Inc.
         Ms. Sue Davis, President, Reuel, Inc.
         Mr. John Lucas, CEO, Turkington APV
         Mr. Robbie Strickland, Strickland Insurance Group
         Mr. Kenny Moore, President, Andy‘s Cheesesteaks & Cheeseburgers d/b/a/Little Mint, Inc.

         A CEDS Strategy Committee consists of 12 members appointed form the ECC General
         Membership Board. The Strategy Committee represents the main economic interests of the
         region and its membership contains a majority of private sector representatives. The
         Strategy committee also includes representatives from the public sector, community
         leaders, private individuals, educators and members of labor organizations.

         ECC developed the CEDS with the direction of the Strategy Committee. The full CEDS
         and any subsequent revisions will be made available for public comment for 30 days prior
         to being conveyed to the EDA for approval. A copy of the CEDS was sent to the State
         Department of Commence and North Carolina‘s Eastern Region for review and comment
         prior to being conveyed to the EDA for approval. Comments received will be appended to
         the CEDS.

         A yearly performance report will be generated and forwarded to the EDA as required. This
         report will document the progress of the CEDS implementation efforts as well as the goals
         and objectives set forth in the plan. Any performance report that results in a change of the
         technical components of the EDA-approved CEDS will be made available for review and
         comment by the public for a period of at least 30 days prior to submitting the performance
         report to EDA.

         A new CEDS will be developed at least every five years, unless ECC determines that a new
         CEDS is needed earlier due to changed circumstance within the region.




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 29 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________




         - 30 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                                          SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST

         V.       SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST

         Specific projects are listed for each goal and objective. During the 5 year CEDS timeframe
         it is estimated that the region will create 5,800 new jobs from private sector expansion in
         the region, 1,450 new jobs from recruitment and 350 new tourism jobs.

         Goal I. – Develop knowledge capacity of regional residents and institutions to promote
         lifelong education as a core value of the region‘s citizens

                  Objective I. A. - Develop a regional education policy and targets for increased
                  educational attainment and a culture for learning

         Project I. A. 1. - Create a permanent Regional Education Forum (of education providers,
         business leaders, and constituencies) with a long-term agenda to define challenges and
         promote education solutions (e.g., high school curriculum reform, enhanced
         communications between schools and stakeholders, and better integration of high school
         and community college curricula)

         Project I. A. 2. - Organize baseline data on educational attainment for the region and by
         county that includes establishing metrics with mid-term and long-term improvement targets

         Project I. A. 3. - Develop a professional communications program (via media, community
         organizations, and schools) to ―sell‖ the value of education, learning, and skills to families

         Project I. A. 4. - Work with school systems (and the State Board of Education) to identify
         best practices and expand/implement promising new alternatives for improving
         math/science education and outcomes (including the creative use of new technologies)

         Project I. A. 5. - Expand student mentoring programs (for adult and youth) to tap existing
         talent (especially in math and sciences), among retirees, military, and business community

                  Objective I. B. - Expand the existing base of ―special-focus‖ education and
                  training opportunities for adults consistent with regional industry clusters

         Project I. B. 1 - Inventory and evaluate the region‘s information about existing adult
         education and training programs (including those in adjacent counties) that support
         technical and high-skill occupations and industries related to the region‘s targeted clusters.

         Project I. B. 2. - Implement new programs to fill identified gaps in special-focus
         education/training (for targeted clusters), with leadership from ECU‘s engineering program
         and related community college programs.

         Project I. B. 3. - Develop an aggressive regional cross-institutional recruitment program to
         increase participation in special-focus training programs for targeted clusters.



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 31 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________




         Project I. B. 4. - Identify approaches, including apprenticeships, to encourage adults to
         move into skilled trades using apprenticeships

         Goal II. – Foster an innovative business creation environment that embraces an
         entrepreneurial culture and that creates and nourishes home grown businesses capable of
         continuously providing new and innovative goods and services

                  Objective II. A. - Cultivate entrepreneurs as a major source of economic growth
                  for the region

         Project II. A. 1. - Educate local leaders about the importance of entrepreneurship

         Project II. A. 2. - Inventory and evaluate the effectiveness of existing resources and
         services for the region to extend current Rural Economic Development Center activities

         Project II. A. 3. - Implement programs in collaboration with the Rural Economic
         Development Center and other organizations to implant resources that fill gaps in available
         business development services and angel/seed capital

         Project II. A. 4. - Market these programs aggressively to grow a ―culture of
         entrepreneurship‖ in the region.

         Project II. A. 5. - Assist in the continued development of existing Angel Investor
         Networks

         Project II. A. 6. - Examine the impact of state regulations and tax policies on
         entrepreneurial behaviors

                  Objective II. B. - Invest in promoting improvements in efforts to retain and grow
                  the region‘s existing businesses

         Project II. B. 1. - Convene an economic summit to educate local leaders about the
         importance of business retention efforts to the region‘s economic success and examine
         what is currently being done

         Project II. B. 2. - Conduct an evaluation study of business losses, retentions, and
         expansions during the past five years to assess the effectiveness of existing business
         retention and expansion services

         Project II. B. 3. - Use the results to enhance the delivery of services for retention and
         expansion

         Project II. B. 4. - Create/expand statewide incentives targeted to helping existing
         businesses that are investing in technologies and training – even those that may be
         downsizing – to become more globally competitive



         - 32 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Goal III. – Develop a global image for eastern North Carolina that promotes its
         competitive location for business and defines the region‘s competitive advantages in the
         global economy

                  Objective III. A. - Create a cogent, cohesive regional marketing brand for
                  business development in the ECC Region

         Project III. A. 1. - Develop partnerships in support of brand development (including NC
         Commerce, For ENC, other regional partnerships, tourism, Global TransPark, etc.)

         Project III. A. 2. - Engage professional expertise to develop a brand for eastern NC

         Project III. A. 3. - Develop an eastern North Carolina marketing plan that builds on the
         brand

                  Objective III. B. - Update the concept of the Global TransPark as a valued
                  ―knowledge-economy‖ asset

         Project III. B. 1. - Evaluate the viability of the original concept plan as well as alternative
         concepts for the GTP in light of the region‘s economic transformation

         Project III. B. 2. - Identify major investment requirements to make GTP viable as a
         ―knowledge economy‖ destination, including the implementation of alternative
         development and land-use concepts (such as high-value agriculture, mixed-use,
         technology-based, or education-oriented development)

         Project III. B. 3. - Evaluate the potential for acquiring appropriate state and federal
         investments in this concept during the next five to ten years

                  Objective III. C. - Focus marketing and business development to attract
                  companies in the targeted clusters

         Project III. C. 1. - Focus business attraction and recruitment efforts to targeted clusters

         Project III. C. 2. - Identify local expertise in regional target clusters to support state,
         regional, and local marketing efforts

         Project III. C. 3. - Conduct systematic industry research and prospect identification in
         targeted industries

         Project III. C. 4. - Identify, organize, evaluate, and implement the needed regional assets
         required for attracting companies in the target clusters

         Project III. C. 5. - Organize and disseminate marketing information for each cluster




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 33 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Project III. C. 6. - Adopt a comprehensive client handling agreement among NC
         Department of Commerce, NCER, local economic developers, councils of government, and
         other allies

         Goal IV. – Develop urban and outdoor amenities that create an attractive environment in
         which businesses and citizens can live, work and play

                  Objective IV. A. - Sustain an ecological environment that ensures adequate
                  capacity and quality to reinforce the region‘s growth strategy

         Project IV. A. 1. - Engage multi-county collaborations in managing water and sewer
         capacity, including the potential for a regional water authority using alternative water
         sources

         Project IV. A. 2. - Assess the investment requirements and potential benefits of alternative
         technologies for obtaining, moving, and storing water

         Project IV. A. 3. - Conduct a public information campaign about water conservation

         Project IV. A. 4. - Incorporate environmental impact, including air quality and water
         usage, as one factor in prioritizing business prospects for assistance

                  Objective IV. B. - Continue efforts to enhance lifestyle amenities

         Project IV. B. 1. - Inventory and evaluate existing outdoor recreational (e.g., boat
         launches, greenways, etc.) assets to identify opportunities for enhancement

         Project IV. B. 2. - Cultivate, preserve, and market the region‘s unique ―hot spots‖ such as
         college towns and marina communities, including bringing more events to the region

         Project IV. B. 3. - Support ―small town‖ improvement initiatives across the region

         Project IV. B. 4. - Define amenities to be marketed to include those beyond the region‘s
         borders such as those in the Research Triangle and the Atlantic beach areas

                  Objective IV. C. - Convene a permanent regional tourism partnership

         Project IV. C. 1. - Develop a brand for regional tourism and retirement attraction that
         complements the region‘s business development brand

         Project IV. C. 2. - Develop a regional tourism marketing program

         Project IV. C. 3. - Provide support for a regional tourism marketing presence, including a
         regional tourism marketing website and related materials




         - 34 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Goal V. – Improve the region‘s connectivity to establish easy, affordable access to move
         people, goods and information throughout the region and to other regions

                  Objective V. A. - Provide resources and advocacy to complete highest priority
                  highway transportation initiatives

         Project V. A. 1. - Prioritize US 70, US 17, and US 258 as the region‘s first priority
         highway corridors

         Project V. A. 2. - Incorporate into the state‘s Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP)
         projects within the priority highway corridors not already included (such as US 70
         interstate quality upgrades, completion of US 17 interstate quality upgrades from
         Wilmington to Hampton Roads, etc.)

         Project V. A. 3. - Advocate for removing obstacles and completing priority projects (e.g.,
         such as US 258, US 17 upgrades, etc.) for those that are already included in the state‘s TIP

         Project V. A. 4. - Explore toll road and alternative financing mechanisms to ensure faster
         completion of certain highway priorities

                  Objective V. B. - Increase investment in dredging and beach nourishment along
                  the Intracoastal Waterway

         Project V. B. 1. - Participate in a planned economic impact study of the area‘s waterway
         assets

         Project V. B. 2. - Advocate for increased federal and state investment in dredging and
         beach re-nourishment

                  Objective V. C. - Promote universal access to high speed, low cost broadband
                  service

         Project V. C. 1. - Document broadband internet technology options and gaps in access for
         area businesses and residents

         Project V. C. 2. - Develop incentives for private and/or public investments in ―pockets of
         non-access‖

         Goal VI. – Improve regional governance to develop collaborative leadership that
         encourages active participation in identifying and solving regional issues

                  Objective VI. A. - Align the ECC economic development goals with those of the
                  NCER and other regional partners to provide a unified plan for regional economic
                  development




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 35 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                    SUGGESTED PROJECTS LIST
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         Project VI. A. 1. - Align the ECC CEDS with the NCER Vision Plan to provide a unified
         approach to regional economic growth

         Project VI. A. 2. - Change the way ECC resources are deployed to support NCER and
         other regional economic development groups

                  Objective VI. B. - Manage and monitor CEDS implementation

         Project VI. B. 1. - Obtain organizational commitments to convening and support roles for
         each of the CEDS actions and related activities

         Project VI. B. 2. - Organize convening and participating organizations as an
         implementation committee for each action and related activities

         Project VI. B. 3. - Obtain endorsement of participating organizations by their
         incorporation of CEDS elements in their own strategic and/or operating plans

         Project VI. B. 4. - Establish a general CEDS coordinating, monitoring, and reporting
         process

         Project VI. B. 5. - Review progress on a quarterly basis




         - 36 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                  PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                               PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS

         VI.      PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS

         Introduction: In developing a prioritized list of vital projects, the Strategy Committee
         examined both the rationale for establishing each goal and discussed its impact on the
         overall CEDS. Following a summary discussion of each goal is a prioritized list of vital
         projects taken from the suggested project list in Chapter V.

         Goal I Summary Discussion

         In the knowledge-driven economy, people represent a particularly vital asset and can offer
         a region its competitive advantage (or disadvantage). At present, the ECC region, as a
         whole, lags both the North Carolina state average and the US average on indicators of
         educational attainment. In the very broadest context, this is an even more serious long-term
         problem than it appears. The US, as a nation, lags behind other national and regional
         economies in educational attainment.

         The Strategy Committee noted that the issue of poor educational attainment is at the root of
         many of the region‘s economic challenges. In particular, the Strategy Committee concluded
         that high school graduation rates must improve and public schools must become more
         effective in teaching math and science as well as language and communication skills –
         especially for ―career-bound‖ (rather than ―college-bound‖) students. A variety of
         approaches were suggested to address these issues, including evaluating different teaching
         tools that would be useful at the K-12 level and would improve the quality of students
         entering area community colleges and universities. However, a limited tax base and federal
         No Child Left Behind requirements have tightened local budgets for the public school
         system. The community college system is also strained from the large number of
         individuals going back for GEDs and adult basic education.

         The region has a large number of working poor and is finding that some areas of the region
         have an aging population that is combining with the loss of young adults (especially the
         most educated) who are leaving for large metropolitan areas. A substantial portion of the
         region‘s remaining workforce was trained for low-skilled jobs in farming and labor-
         intensive manufacturing. These industries do not demand much in the way of an education,
         and therefore they leave a legacy of low educational attainment and low wage jobs. Today,
         limited workforce skills represent a critical challenge that the region must overcome.

         In spite of the region‘s low educational attainment and rural/small town tradition, it is
         certainly well endowed with a variety of post-secondary institutions – offering a variety of
         advanced degrees and technical and career educational opportunities to improve workforce
         skills.

         After reviewing regional educational assets and identifying key concerns, the Strategy
         Committee concluded that the region's workforce needs improved skill levels in math,
         science, information technology, and languages to compete globally. They also agreed that



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 37 -
         2007 CEDS                                                  PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         educational attainment levels among adults in the region are too low, that local public
         schools are not adequately preparing graduates for "knowledge economy" jobs, and that
         young adults who earn a post-secondary degree (from a university or community college)
         are migrating from the region.

         Vital Projects List

         Goal I – Develop knowledge capacity of regional residents and institutions to promote
         lifelong education as a core value of the region‘s citizens

                  Objective I. A. - Develop a regional education policy and targets for increased
                  educational attainment and a culture for learning

         Project I. A. 1. - Create a permanent Regional Education Forum (of education providers,
         business leaders, and constituencies) with a long-term agenda to define challenges and
         promote education solutions (e.g., high school curriculum reform, enhanced
         communications between schools and stakeholders, and better integration of high school
         and community college curricula)

         Project I. A. 4. - Work with school systems (and the State Board of Education) to identify
         best practices and expand/implement promising new alternatives for improving
         math/science education and outcomes (including the creative use of new technologies)

         Project I. A. 5. - Expand student mentoring programs (for adult and youth) to tap existing
         talent (especially in math and sciences), among retirees, military, and business community

                  Objective I. B. - Expand the existing base of ―special-focus‖ education and
                  training opportunities for adults consistent with regional industry clusters

         Project I. B. 2. - Implement new programs to fill identified gaps in special-focus
         education/training (for targeted clusters), with leadership from ECU‘s engineering program
         and related community college programs.

         Goal II Summary Discussion

         The ECC region is not typically viewed as a source for innovative new technologies. Its
         role in the state economy has traditionally been that of a ―producer‖ or ―maker‖ region.
         Not surprisingly, the Region does not possess the same depth of knowledge based assets or
         high value-added activities as the nearby Research Triangle region. Nevertheless, regional
         leaders note that it has several key innovation sources on which to build.

         The Marine Science and Education Partnership

         The area‘s research and development capacity includes a number of federal, state, and
         nonprofit investments to promote applied research and innovation in the marine sciences.
         Based in Morehead City, ten institutions have joined forces to create the Marine Science



         - 38 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                  PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         and Education Partnership (MSEP), employing more than 400 people, including the largest
         concentration of marine scientists on the East Coast. The institutions include:

         National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
         Center for Coastal Fisheries and Habitat Research
         North Carolina Maritime Museum
         North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries
         Duke University Marine Lab
         University of North Carolina Institute of Marine Science
         North Carolina Sea Grant
         North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)
         NC Division of Coast Management
         North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores
         North Carolina State University‘s Center for Marine Sciences and Technology (CMAST)
         Carteret Community College‘s Aquaculture Technology Program.

         The MSEP research facilities offer research, product development and personnel training
         for corporations around the world. Area laboratories have been involved in developing
         many products through contract research with companies such as Strohs Brewery, W. R.
         Grace, Hercules Chemical, Biosponge Aquaculture Products, International Paint, Allied
         Chemical, Sunshine Makers, Aquanautics, Mann Bait Company, 3M Corporation and
         General Dynamics.

         Agricultural Research Stations

         The ECC region also boasts three agricultural research stations—Cherry Research Farm in
         Goldsboro, Caswell Research Farm in Kinston, and Lower Coastal Plain Tobacco/
         Cunningham Research Station in Kinston. With over 2,000 acres, Cherry Research Farm in
         Goldsboro is the largest experimental station in the region and houses the Center for
         Environmental Farming Systems. Funding from the North Carolina Department of
         Agriculture and Consumer Services, North Carolina State University and North Carolina
         A&T State University supports the station, which attempts to simulate the conditions of
         real farms in eastern North Carolina. Its main mission is to develop techniques appropriate
         that make farms environmentally, economically and socially sustainable. As a result, it
         conducts a variety of experiments related to low impact (e.g. no till) and organic farming.

         The Caswell Research Farm in Kinston has 1,400 acres and provides another location for
         large plot research. Caswell focuses its research on long-term swine and dairy herd studies.
         Livestock studies and veterinary teaching for NC State University‘s College of Veterinary
         Medicine is combined at Caswell with experiments related to field crops like corn and soy
         beans as well as loblolly pine forests while also addressing issues related to pest
         management and plant genetics. In addition, a smaller experiment station -- Kinston‘s
         Lower Coastal Plain Tobacco/ Cunningham Research Station is devoted primarily to
         tobacco-related production research with additional testing on other field crops like
         peanuts, cotton, corn and soy beans as well as grocery produce such as melons,
         blackberries, and chili peppers as alternative crops for tobacco farmers.



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 39 -
         2007 CEDS                                                  PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________




         A New Culture of Innovation and Entrepreneurship

         The research and development assets could serve as the foundation for an innovation-
         oriented strategy designed to create new businesses and commercial products. Because the
         region‘s workforce traditionally depended on long-standing existing farms or factories, few
         entrepreneurs were ever encouraged to develop and sell their own products and services
         locally. As a result, little new business start-up or new product development activity ever
         occurred. This capability to innovate is important to help the regional economy transform
         from its traditional dependence on mature, but declining industries. Emerging and existing
         industries are much more likely to succeed if the companies (and their people) can respond
         to opportunities resulting from increasing global competition and fast-paced technological
         change.

         A key goal in moving forward should be to get leaders both in the region and throughout
         the state to recognize the importance of these assets. This visibility is important in two
         ways: it attracts resources (including dollars and researchers) to the region, and it also can
         help to create a demand from the private sector for access to these resources as they
         develop new products or services.

         The Strategy Committee concluded that the region does not have adequate services to
         support entrepreneurial development (e.g., incubation, equity capital, mentoring, and
         networking), and that the region‘s economic development efforts do not adequately
         respond to the needs of existing companies that wish to stay and grow in eastern North
         Carolina.

         Vital Projects List

         Goal II - Foster an innovative business creation environment that embraces an
         entrepreneurial culture and that creates and nourishes home grown businesses capable of
         continuously providing new and innovative goods and services

                  Objective II. A. - Cultivate entrepreneurs as a major source of economic growth
                  for the region

         Project II. A. 1. - Educate local leaders about the importance of entrepreneurship

         Project II. A. 2. - Inventory and evaluate the effectiveness of existing resources and
         services for the region to extend current Rural Economic Development Center activities

         Project II. A. 3. - Implement programs in collaboration with the Rural Economic
         Development Center and other organizations to implant resources that fill gaps in available
         business development services and angel/seed capital

                  Objective II. B. - Invest in promoting improvements in efforts to retain and grow
                  the region‘s existing businesses



         - 40 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                  PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________




         Project II. B. 4. - Create/expand statewide incentives targeted to helping existing
         businesses that are investing in technologies and training – even those that may be
         downsizing – to become more globally competitive

         Goal III Summary Discussion

         The ECC region is not really a ‗natural‘ economic region because there is no central urban
         core (like Raleigh) that typically defines a region. Consequently, many of the counties have
         either focused internally or associated with areas outside the region. For instance, many
         people look to the Raleigh area for jobs, medical services, entertainment, or retail
         opportunities. In the southern parts of the Region, businesses and residents alike find
         greater affinity with other coastal areas than the inland counties.

         In spite of these challenges, the ECC region does possess several key location assets that
         could serve as a foundation on which to build a clear regional image. First and possibly
         foremost, the region‘s western counties benefit from a close proximity to Interstate 95 and
         Raleigh. The region‘s central counties possess large stretches of agricultural land and a
         long agricultural tradition. The Coastal counties obviously possess the unique advantage of
         ocean beaches which serve as an attraction for residents and tourists alike.

         The entire region continues to benefit from its proximity to both Raleigh and Wilmington.
         These rapidly growing metropolitan areas are creating opportunities for parts of the ECC
         region. The spread of Raleigh eastward and the improvement of the region‘s highway
         linkages to Raleigh have expanded opportunities for Greene and Wayne Counties.

         While the ECC region is predominantly rural, its economic success is dependent on how
         well its economic activities link to nearby urban growth areas where significant new
         development is concentrating. Even within the region, growth has occurred most rapidly in
         the region‘s larger urban communities.

         With a number of smaller employment centers, each vying for attention from public and
         private investors, it should come as little surprise that there are limited resources available
         to address the substantial challenges that each faces. First and foremost, regional leaders
         must confront the challenge of combining these fragmented interests into a common call to
         action.

         Two other issues present both threats and opportunities for the region. First, globalization
         creates a clear and present threat for many area businesses and workers. Many
         manufacturing activities, especially textiles and apparel, have already relocated to low-cost
         offshore locations. Paradoxically, globalization also offers emerging market and joint
         venture opportunities for some new and existing industries. For instance, innovations in
         agriculture and marine sciences have global application if regional companies could be
         among the first to commercialize these findings and if regional research centers were
         positioned at the leading edge of these research breakthroughs.




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         The large military complex in the region represents a second regional asset presenting both
         threats and opportunities. The region has enjoyed tremendous benefits from the national
         defense build-up in the first half of this decade. The Department of Defense‘s Base
         Realignment and Closures (BRAC) Commission-recommended impacts will affect the
         region, but not significantly. The Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point is recommended
         to realign 628 personnel and Camp Lejeune will lose 183 jobs. The Pentagon
         recommended adding 362 military and civilian jobs at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.
         The net job losses from these facilities represent less than 1 percent of the total military
         presence in the region. The threat of job losses from the BRAC recommendations is more
         than offset by the opportunities available to area companies if they could develop stronger
         relationships with military procurement or if area economic developers could be more
         successful in attracting existing military suppliers to locate in the region.

         These and other development opportunities may well be stymied, however, due to critical
         infrastructure shortfalls. For instance, lack of water may be a particularly large impediment
         to future growth according to a recent study by the North Carolina Rural Economic
         Development Center. The study found that ECC‘s groundwater accounts for about more
         than half of local water use, and daily demand for water is expected to increase by more
         than 50 percent by 2020. The increased need for potable water is greater than the ability of
         the groundwater to replenish itself.

         In response to this issue, the North Carolina Division of Water Resources implemented the
         Central Coastal Plain Capacity Use Rule in 2002 to address the declining water levels, salt
         water intrusion, and de-watering of areas of 15 eastern North Carolina counties (including
         all 9 ECC counties). The rule requires that water withdrawn from the aquifer be reduced by
         up 75 percent. Finding alternatives to the necessary water supply for residential and
         industrial usage as well as conducting adequate water treatment will be critical for the
         Region‘s future economic development.

         The Strategy Committee concluded that the area has no "identity" outside the region or the
         state, that existing fresh water and sewer capacity will be inadequate to meet the region's
         future needs, and that the area's military bases look to businesses outside the region to meet
         their high-tech needs.

         Vital Projects List

         Goal III - Develop a global image for eastern North Carolina that promotes its competitive
         location for business and defines the region‘s competitive advantages in the global
         economy

                  Objective III. A. - Create a cogent, cohesive regional marketing brand for
                  business development in the ECC Region

         Project III. A. 1. - Develop partnerships in support of brand development (including NC
         Commerce, For ENC, other regional partnerships, tourism, Global TransPark, etc.)




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                  Objective III. B. - Update the concept of the Global TransPark as a valued
                  ―knowledge-economy‖ asset

         Project III. B. 3. - Evaluate the potential for acquiring appropriate state and federal
         investments in this concept during the next five to ten years

                  Objective III. C. - Focus marketing and business development to attract
                  companies in the targeted clusters

         Project III. C. 1. - Focus business attraction and recruitment efforts to targeted clusters

         Project III. C. 2. - Identify local expertise in regional target clusters to support state,
         regional, and local marketing efforts

         Project III. C. 4. - Identify, organize, evaluate, and implement the needed regional assets
         required for attracting companies in the target clusters

         Goal IV Summary Discussion

         Developments in information and communications technology allow knowledge workers to
         live almost anywhere. Successful regions are those able to attract and retain talented
         people. Life involves more than having a nice home and a great job. Successful
         communities also rely on their amenity assets to offer a ―third place‖ for their residents. A
         region with unique amenity assets can influence the location choices for mobile educated
         adults that can opt to live almost anywhere they wish. Consequently, identifying ways to
         make the region different from elsewhere is a critical element of a successful economic
         development strategy. Not surprisingly, many of the amenity assets important for attracting
         and retaining talented residents also appeal to tourists. Consequently, tourism ―product
         development‖ efforts assume a complimentary role in economic development by ensuring
         that places appeal to both local residents and potential visitors.

         Many places possess a variety of amenities. For instance, urban locations typically possess
         amenity assets that appeal to people as ―social creatures.‖ Movie theatres, restaurants,
         shopping, and nightlife activities are among the activities that typify urban amenities. In
         addition, access to educational opportunities, sporting events, regional festivals and fairs,
         urban parks, and historic sites represent examples of other types of amenities that are
         readily available in urban environments. Many knowledge industries and their workers
         crave access to these amenities as they represent an important ―third place‖ alternative to
         home and work. For a predominantly rural area, the ECC region has a number of unique
         assets: the Kinston Indians minor league baseball team, the Havelock Air Show and Spring
         Festival, the Neuseway Planetarium, Health and Science Museum, and the Tryon Palace to
         name a few.

         Where the region may be even more significantly endowed is in its natural amenities. In
         particular, the region has an extensive array of ―water‖ and ―land‖ amenities. ―Water‖
         amenities in the form of the region‘s coastline and waterways serve as the nucleus for the



                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 43 -
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         region‘s travel and tourism-related industries. In particular, the coastal area offers an
         abundance of recreational assets that make the Eastern Region unique. Carteret, Craven,
         Onslow, and Pamlico counties all offer direct water access to the Atlantic Ocean and
         sounds. The beaches are a world-class draw for the region – especially since some areas are
         still relatively unspoiled by development. The Croatan National Forest also provides one of
         the most unique sports fishing environments in the world. Cliffs of the Neuse State Park
         south of Goldsboro is a distinctive hiking, boating, and swimming location.

         The region‘s ―land‖ assets begin with its agricultural heritage. Wide-open spaces allow for
         a variety of opportunities. This has led to new opportunities such as ―Pick Your Own‖
         farms and organic farming. This farm and small-town tradition has engendered a warm
         ―people-friendly‖ local culture. Combined with a mild climate, the Eastern Region has
         become an increasingly attractive location for retirees, pre-retirees and second home
         owners. For many communities, in-migrants provide an important source of new income as
         well as a potential new source of entrepreneurial activity. Major new developments are
         underway including retiree communities.

         The key challenge for the region is that these assets – when considered together – offer a
         wide diversity for residents and tourist, but none are concentrated in any single county.
         The opportunity lies in the region packaging its amenities together as a single offering to
         prospective businesses, residents, and tourists alike. While many of the region‘s most
         unique assets are located in the coastal counties, these are ironically the most difficult to
         access due to the limited interstate highway system so it behooves all parts of the region to
         consider how best to improve access to these amenities for all.

         The Strategy Committee discussed these issues and felt that the region needs to develop
         and market amenities designed to attract and retain young professionals that are vital for
         the area‘s success in a knowledge-based economy. The area simply does not possess
         certain kinds of ―urban amenities,‖ such as the nightlife, needed to attract and retain young
         professionals. In this case, young professionals will naturally look to Raleigh for both job
         and recreational opportunities.

         Given that the region probably cannot compete with Raleigh in offering the diversity of
         urban amenities, the Strategy Committee suggested that regional leaders focus on
         developing ―outdoor amenities‖ (trails, waterways, etc.). This strategy would focus
         attraction and retention strategies on residents and workers predisposed to be more
         interested in the outdoor amenities readily available in the region. Even so, the region‘s
         success in this effort depends on its ability to upgrade many of its recreational facilities to
         provide more and better quality access points (such as parking and boat launches along the
         region‘s rivers and streams or parking for bike trails). The Strategy Committee agreed that
         the region should also develop a plan that includes linking its existing set of assets into a
         single focus that could be integrated into regional branding and marketing activities.

         The Strategy Committee concluded that the region lacks sufficient amenities necessary to
         attract and retain young professionals, that local tourism and recreational assets are not




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         sufficiently integrated across the region, and that access to the region's recreational assets is
         inadequate.

         Vital Projects List

         Goal IV - Develop urban and outdoor amenities that create an attractive environment in
         which businesses and citizens can live, work and play

                  Objective IV. A. - Sustain an ecological environment that ensures adequate
                  capacity and quality to reinforce the region‘s growth strategy

         Project IV. A. 1. - Engage multi-county collaborations in managing water and sewer
         capacity, including the potential for a regional water authority using alternative water
         sources

                  Objective IV. B. - Continue efforts to enhance lifestyle amenities

         Project IV. B. 2. - Cultivate, preserve, and market the region‘s unique ―hot spots‖ such as
         college towns and marina communities, including bringing more events to the region

         Project IV. B. 3. - Support ―small town‖ improvement initiatives across the region

                  Objective IV. C. - Convene a permanent regional tourism partnership

         Project IV. C. 1. - Develop a brand for regional tourism and retirement attraction that
         complements the region‘s business development brand

         Goal V Summary Discussion

         To support and expand continuous economic growth, the region needs a well connected
         and sound physical infrastructure system to move goods and services quickly and
         efficiently to points inside and outside the region. Although two major Interstate highways
         (I-95 & I-40) and several US highways run through or skirt parts of the region, the existing
         physical infrastructure still poses challenges for potential growth.

         The lack of a fully inter-connected interstate-quality, four-lane highway system within the
         region has hindered economic interactions among the region‘s urban centers. This, in turn,
         has inhibited the development and/or utilization of other assets such as the seaport and
         local airports.

         One of the region‘s most unique assets is the Port of Morehead City. With a 45-foot
         channel, the port is one of the deepest on the U.S. East Coast. The port is critical for
         national security, serving the US Marine Corps at Camp Lejeune. The port‘s primary
         access to the vital interstate freight transportation network of I-95 and I-40 is via US 70 and
         US 17 as well as daily train service. Continued investment in port development and
         facilities could enhance the opportunity for the Region to become a major gateway for



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         world shipping, but its success depends on improving four-lane highway access along US
         70.

         In addition to highway access, the port‘s success also depends on waterway access. The
         region‘s pattern of natural channels requires continuous dredging to make travel for
         sea-going vessels possible. This dredging provides lanes for fishing vessels and
         recreational craft as well. The port‘s future as well as the region‘s fishing and leisure craft
         industries will depend on the treatment given to silt building up along key waterways,
         including the Morehead City Harbor, the New River Inlet, the channel between Back
         Sound and Lookout Bight, the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, and Beaufort Harbor among
         others. The US Army Corps of Engineers historically dredged these waterways, but the
         Corps has cut back its role due to budget limitations and environmental concerns.

         The region‘s proximity to water resources provides abundant opportunities for various
         tourism activities in the region, including fishing, boating and sailing. Like the port, the
         region‘s tourism potential may also rely on continued dredging as well as other
         infrastructure investments. Likewise, the proposed development of a fast ferry for Cedar
         Island and Ocracoke would allow better access to the Outer Banks through NC 70 to NC
         12, increasing tourism travel in the region.

         If silt continues to build in the Intracoastal Waterway, poor accessibility could have a huge
         economic impact not only on the tourist and the marine trades industries in the Coastal
         counties, but also on the broader regional economy. Strategy Committee members continue
         to debate whether dredging should remain the purview of the federal government or
         whether state or local action will be required.

         Like the Port of Morehead City, the Global TransPark—envisioned as an inland port with
         superior air transportation—has also been limited by highway access. Given the choice
         about which transportation mode to address first, many Strategy Committee members felt
         that completing the US 70 upgrade was the most pressing issue facing the region because it
         impacts the Port, the Global TransPark and by extension the freight movement industry as
         well as tourism. Suggestions on actions to be taken to shorten the US 70 planning and
         development cycle ranged from increasing political pressure in Raleigh to utilizing toll
         roads as a source of funds to accelerate the project.

         The challenges in moving US 70 forward were repeated in the region‘s fragmented (and
         often non-existent) public transportation system. Localized public transportation is mainly
         used to serve the needs of the elderly and disabled, but it is not available to the
         economically disadvantaged who may have no other means for traveling to work. Inter-city
         freight and passenger service is also limited by the quality of the area‘s air and rail
         transportation network. The region is well endowed with numerous airports, two of which
         provide daily commercial service. Commercial service to Charlotte and Atlanta are
         available at Albert J. Ellis Airport in Jacksonville and Craven County Regional Airport in
         New Bern. Because the airports are spread across the region and serve small population
         catchment areas, air service is frequently inadequate to meet the demands of global
         businesses. Ironically, lack of interstate and major regional highways limit the market draw



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         of these smaller airports, including access to passenger and cargo facilities. While Strategy
         Committee members recognized this issue, they also viewed possible solutions – such as a
         single ―super-regional‖ airport at the Global TransPark – as politically divisive.

         The region‘s freight rail system is fairly well developed, with a few important gaps –
         especially north-south between Goldsboro and Wilmington. The Strategy Committee noted
         that rail access hinders the region‘s competitiveness, particularly the inadequacy of rail
         linkages to the Port at Morehead City. Strategy Committee suggestions for addressing this
         issue focused on advocating support for rail development. A recently completed feasibility
         study endorsed a new rail route link from Goldsboro to Wilmington that would improve
         access to the Port of Wilmington.

         The region‘s success will depend not only on transportation linkages but also on better
         communications, especially access to broadband Internet. The region as a whole lags
         behind the state average.

         The region‘s more rural counties – Greene, Jones, Pamlico, and Duplin – have the greatest
         need for improved access to the internet. In fact, Greene, Jones and Pamlico are three of the
         nine North Carolina counties where less than half of the households currently have high-
         speed internet access. To better provide high-speed Internet services for commercial and
         residential use, the e-NC Authority funded a telecenter in Duplin County in 2001 that
         offers technological resources, services and training programs. Rural communities in
         particular need access to the Internet to allow businesses and citizens to participate and
         compete in the global economy.

         Many of these issues intersect with one another by reinforcing the need for better
         transportation and communications services. Addressing the highways issue, in particular,
         appears to have achieved the greatest consensus throughout the region. The regional
         stakeholders agree that they must be organized around common solutions if they are to
         achieve any effective solutions. This issue is particularly relevant for US 70 because
         progress may require unique ideas such as the toll road proposal to generate the necessary
         resources or enlisting local military support to cast the improvement as a matter of national
         security. The involvement of the military in completing US 70 upgrades not only has the
         benefit of bringing a very large and influential player to the table, but could offer a unique
         justification for improvements to US 70 that might open up new funding opportunities.
         The Strategy Committee suggested that the Global TransPark is an invaluable resource
         whose success depends on continued facility and infrastructure investments as well as
         sustained marketing.

         A recurring theme among the issues raised was the concern that the ECC region is
         underdeveloped due to inadequate transportation infrastructure. Many Strategy Committee
         members felt that access to key destinations within the region or outside the region may
         well be the single most important impediment to the region‘s economic growth and
         competitiveness.




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 47 -
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         The Strategy Committee concluded that the lack of "interstate-quality" roads in critical
         areas of the region hinders industrial/economic growth, that the region's railroad system is
         inadequate to meet the needs of major freight movement, that passenger air service is
         infrequent and expensive because the region‘s airports compete against one another with
         limited scheduled service, that increased silt in the area's inlets and Intracoastal Waterways
         has resulted in decreased boat traffic and has a significant negative impact on the region‘s
         and state‘s economy, that the Global TransPark is an underutilized resource, and that
         ―pockets‖ of the region do not have broadband internet access.

         Vital Projects List

         Goal V - Improve the region‘s connectivity to establish easy, affordable access to move
         people, goods and information throughout the region and to other regions

             Objective V. A. - Provide resources and advocacy to complete highest priority
               highway transportation initiatives

         Project V. A. 1. - Prioritize US 70, US 17, and US 258 as the region‘s first priority
         highway corridors

         Project V. A. 2. - Incorporate into the state‘s Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP)
         projects within the priority highway corridors not already included (such as US 70
         interstate quality upgrades, completion of US 17 interstate quality upgrades from
         Wilmington to Hampton Roads, etc.)

                  Objective V. B. - Increase investment in dredging and beach nourishment along
                  the Intracoastal Waterway

         Project V. B. 1. - Participate in a planned economic impact study of the area‘s waterway
         assets

                  Objective V. C. - Promote universal access to high speed, low cost broadband
                  service

         Project V. C. 1. - Document broadband internet technology options and gaps in access for
         area businesses and residents

         Goal VI Summary Discussion

         The nine counties of the ECC region have a unique opportunity to work together. As part
         of North Carolina‘s Eastern Region, collaboration has enabled ECC counties to generate
         and pool millions of dollars in low-interest loan funds to support infrastructure and
         development projects in the region. These assets helped the counties invest in industrial
         sites, buildings, and infrastructure projects. The interest earned from the pooled funds
         supports the operations of the NCER Commission as well as providing grants for incentive
         packages, certified sites, environmental planning, and economic or product development



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         activities. The region can further engender support for local economic development efforts
         by accessing funds available through the Golden Leaf Foundation

         Some of the fundamental governance challenges facing the ECC region and its initiatives
         can be attributed to continued parochialism among the region‘s leadership. Even though the
         region possesses a suitable number of strengths on which to build, its leaders remain
         fragmented in their outlook in part because few consider the region a cohesive economic
         unit.

         In discussing these issues, the Strategy Committee noted that the ECC region includes nine
         very unique counties brought together more from political necessity than from common
         economic purpose. Consequently, county needs vary widely and generate a wide range of
         demands on ECC. From the perspective of each county, ECC‘s success has traditionally
         been measured on how well they meet the individual county‘s needs rather than the
         organization‘s overall impact on the region.

         Furthermore, one critical role that must be filled is helping local elected and appointed
         officials better understand the benefits from regional collaboration in solving the area‘s
         ―big‖ challenges. Because local leaders are rightfully focused on their own county‘s
         respective needs, these leaders may require guidance on how regional collaboration can
         help achieve greater success for individual counties.

         Strategy Committee members agreed that area leaders must think and act regionally in
         order for the CEDS to be successful. Several key issues emerged as potential obstacles to
         finding and implementing regional economic development solutions. The Strategy
         Committee concluded that ECC‘s constituents expect different and sometimes conflicting
         outcomes from ECC, that many local leaders focus on addressing county-specific issues
         without fully exploring solutions that include greater regional cooperation, and that the
         counties vary widely in their capabilities and resources to meet their economic
         development needs.

         Vital Projects List

         Goal VI - Improve regional governance to develop collaborative leadership that
         encourages active participation in identifying and solving regional issues

                  Objective VI. A. - Align the ECC economic development goals with those of the
                  NCER and other regional partners to provide a unified plan for regional economic
                  development

         Project VI. A. 1. - Align the ECC CEDS with the NCER Vision Plan to provide a unified
         approach to regional economic growth

                  Objective VI. B. - Manage and monitor CEDS implementation




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         2007 CEDS                                                  PRIORITIZED LISTING OF VITAL PROJECTS
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         Project VI. B. 1. - Obtain organizational commitments to convening and support roles for
         each of the CEDS actions and related activities

         Project VI. B. 5. - Review progress on a quarterly basis




         - 50 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                                         ECONOMIC CLUSTERS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                                               ECONOMIC CLUSTERS

         VII.     ECONOMIC CLUSTERS

         Cluster Analysis Approach

         As part of the background research conducted to better understand the regional economy
         and its sub-regions, the Eastern Carolina Council (ECC) worked with North Carolina‘s
         Eastern Region (NCER) and the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC)
         to conduct an in-depth cluster analysis of the region‘s industrial base. The study builds on
         prior targeting studies, which identified the region‘s fastest growing industries and those
         industries that represented the best targets for economic development. The prior studies
         were aimed at examining the region‘s growth sectors, but these studies were never intended
         to explore how targeted industry growth might affect supplier industries.

         Summary of Cluster Findings

         In analyzing the regional economy, CREC identified those clusters that it viewed as a
         significant source of both jobs and potential wealth creation activity for the region. These
         regional clusters were divided into three broad categories: (1) existing, (2) emerging, and
         (3) potential. Existing clusters possess a large number of firms and employees relative to
         other clusters in the region. They also tend to have greater depth and diversity than other
         clusters in terms of the types of firms operating regionally. Some of the region‘s existing
         clusters are recognized as mature industries with declining employment—like apparel and
         tobacco—while others are growing—like the military, hotels and transportation (including
         tourism).

         Seldom are existing clusters the source of rapid growth, and frequently they are
         characterized by very little innovation activity. Emerging clusters are those that show signs
         of reaching a large size in terms of the number of sectors and types of firms represented
         locally. At a certain point, emerging clusters may be recognized as a possible regional
         specialty–such as wood building products. In contrast, potential clusters are small and are
         greatly affected by either existing policy initiatives or growth occurring in the surrounding
         area. In many cases, potential clusters may exhibit rapid employment growth or represent
         good development opportunities.

         The following table lists the region‘s most important clusters. The existing clusters
         identified include the region‘s traditional manufacturing clusters, such as textiles and
         apparel, farming and related businesses (including tobacco and animal husbandry), and
         food processing (especially packaged food products). The table also identifies several
         emerging clusters including pharmaceutical production, wood building products, concrete
         and brick building products, and construction equipment manufacturing. Potential clusters
         listed include metalworking, precision instruments, rubber, and nonresidential building
         products.




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 51 -
         2007 CEDS                                                                            ECONOMIC CLUSTERS
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         In examining the region‘s cluster make-up, CREC paid particular attention to clusters
         utilizing or producing technology-related products or services. These clusters are important
         because they represent some of the most important sources of innovation among firms and
         high-paying jobs for the region‘s workers. Frequently, technology-intensive industries are
         critical drivers in knowledge-intensive economic development in a region.



                                           Summary of Benchmark Analysis Findings for
                                               North Carolina’s Eastern Region
                                                                            Membership in Extended High-Tech Buyer-
                          Membership in Extended Buyer-Supplier Chains
                                                                                        Supplier Chains
                       -Textiles & Apparel
                       -Packaged Food Products
                       -Feed Products
                       -Tobacco Products
           Existing




                       -Farming
                       -Appliances
                       -Grain Milling
                       -Wood Processing
                       -Marine Trades
                       -Hotels & Transportations Services (Tourism )
                       -Military (industry )
                       -Pharmaceuticals                                  -Phamaceuticals
           Emerging




                       -Construction Machinery & Distribution Equip.     -Engine Equip.
                       -Concrete & Brick Bldg Products
                       -Wood Bldg Products
                       -Metalworking & Fab Metal Products                -Industrial Machinery & Distribution Equip.
           Potential




                       -Precision Instruments                            -Military (Aviation)
                       -Nonresidential Building Products                 -Wiring Devices & Switches
                       -Rubber Products                                  -Precision Instruments
                                                                         -Cable Mfg
         CREC found only a few technology-intensive value chain clusters, and none were
         significant contributors to the region‘s existing economic base. Companies in the engine
         equipment manufacturing cluster represent an important component of what appears to be
         emerging technology clusters. The region also has several potential technology clusters that
         could represent future growth opportunities in industrial machinery, military-related
         aviation, wiring devices, precision instruments, and cable manufacturing.

         Primarily, military procurement in the region seems to be mostly focused on providing
         maintenance, support services, and logistics to the area bases. The single exception to this
         included the aircraft/rotorcraft repair activity at the Naval Aviation Depot (NADEP) in
         Havelock. Some of this activity could be defined as technology-intensive, but given the
         limited amount of similar activities elsewhere in the region, it is categorized as a potential
         technology-intensive cluster.

         Certain local service clusters, such as healthcare, retail, and business services, have a large
         number of workers, but this may not be especially significant since a substantial amount of



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         2007 CEDS                                                                         ECONOMIC CLUSTERS
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


         these service jobs rely on the local population to fuel demand. In fact, citizens may even be
         leaving the region to gain access to specialized medical services or to purchase more
         expensive durable retail goods. While the healthcare, retail, and business services clusters
         represent an important source of jobs, these clusters are not necessarily a source of new
         ―wealth creation.‖ Wealth creation occurs when the regional economy produces goods or
         services (via its value chain clusters) that attract dollars from outside the region.

         At the county level clusters may be a bit more concentrated. For instance Onslow County
         has a higher proportion of retail than the region, serving the Marines at Camp Lejeune and
         many of the surrounding counties. Carteret County has a high concentration of travel and
         tourism activities.

         Selecting the Region‘s Targeted Clusters

         The ECC region offers a diverse set of opportunities for cluster development. Very few
         clusters affect all nine counties in the region. Therefore, ECC recognizes that its efforts to
         target clusters for development will have a differing impact on each of its nine counties.
         To treat the counties equitably will require efforts aimed at several clusters, identified in
         the following table.


                                       Targeted Clusters for the ECC Region

                       Kitchen building products
                       Wood Kitchen Cabinets & Countertops MFG
                       Appliances
                       Food MFG and Wholesaling (Incl. high value-added agriculture)
                       ‗Advanced‘ Manufacturing
                       Electrical Instruments
                       Engine Equipment
                       Heating Equipment
                       Marine Trades
                       Tourism (incl. Retiree Attraction)
                       Military & Military Procurement
                       Construction
                       Logistics
                       Aviation




                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 53 -
         2007 CEDS                                                             IMPLEMENTATION ACTION PLAN
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________




         - 54 -                                      EasternCarolinaCouncil
         2007 CEDS                                                             IMPLEMENTATION ACTION PLAN
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                                      IMPLEMENTATION ACTION PLAN

         VIII. IMPLEMENTATION ACTION PLAN

         The action plan for the goals, when appropriate, include: promoting economic development
         and opportunity; fostering effective transportation access; enhancing and protecting the
         environment; maximizing effective development and use of the workforce consistent with
         any applicable State or local workforce investment strategy; promoting the use of
         technology in economic development including access to high-speed telecommunications;
         balancing resources through sound management of physical development and obtaining
         and utilizing adequate funds and other resources to accomplish those goals.

         Goal I. – Develop knowledge capacity of regional residents and institutions to promote
         lifelong education as a core value of the region‘s citizens

         Background

         The Strategy Committee determined that, with traditional jobs at risk in a changed
         economy, the region faces a real human capital talent deficiency. Many area workers and
         jobseekers lack adequate skills to complete critical tasks and to compete for today‘s jobs.
         Others in the existing workforce lack ―adequate‖ pride in their work and suitable work
         ethic, according to several participants. Low rates of adult literacy certainly affect
         workplace attitudes and skills. Ultimately, the region must significantly improve basic
         skills among its adult workforce. The Strategy Committee agreed that such improvements
         would need to begin at a basic sociological level.

         To address these challenges, the Strategy Committee agreed that regional efforts should
         focus on changing the region‘s attitude toward education and learning. The region must
         help establish a ―social culture‖ that values education at all levels, especially among its
         young people. The key to success is motivation—―a yearning for lifelong learning.‖ The
         Strategy Committee felt that Eastern North Carolina‘s culture simply does not yet place
         enough emphasis on or value in education.

         In such an environment, it may be difficult to attract talented people and knowledge-
         oriented companies. So, any economic development strategy for the region must emphasize
         and sell the economic benefits of education to existing residents. Strategies aimed at
         improving educational attainment levels should also recognize that poverty-related issues
         may inhibit children and adults from learning. The Strategy Committee acknowledged that
         successful strategies to improve educational attainment levels must engage the public
         schools and explore alternative education delivery mechanisms wherever necessary to
         ensure lower-income residents have an opportunity to succeed. Many of these solutions
         must engage statewide leaders as well as local efforts.

         Even so, it is important for younger adults of all economic and cultural backgrounds to
         understand that learning math, science and communications skills, in particular, can
         translate into better paying jobs and more disposable income in the long term. Efforts to
         improve these capabilities must begin at the middle school level, participants agreed.


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         Waiting until high school to generate interest among students is too late. Furthermore,
         teachers, constrained by their curriculum and federal mandates, are frequently focused
         more on meeting national educational standards rather than teaching children relevant
         skills. One participant suggested that regional leaders must act to identify efforts that
         reinforce excellence in science and math, so that students will become as interested in these
         areas as they are in sports.

         Implementation Action Plan & Convening Partners

                  Objective I. A. - Develop a regional education policy and targets for increased
                  educational attainment and a culture for learning

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Inventory of resources
         Implementation of first meeting of the Regional Education Forum with ―active‖
                 participation of business persons
         Implementation of ―benchmark‖ and follow-up surveys of household attitudes toward
                 education
         Identify funding resources to support region-wide ―value of education‖ campaign
         Schedule of meetings of the Regional Education Forum and target of 50 percent
                 participation involving business persons
         Development of region-wide ―value of education‖ campaign

         Proposed convening partners
         Need to recruit regional collaborators                    (especially     representing      the    business
               community and educators)

                  Objective I. B. - Expand the existing base of “special-focus” education and
                  training opportunities for adults consistent with regional industry clusters

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Inventory of education and training resources
         Identification of training program gaps
         Identification of workers in ―at-risk‖ occupations
         Creation of consortium agreement for community colleges in targeted special focus
                 training programs
         Development of curriculum for new special-focus training programs

         Proposed convening partners
         Workforce development boards working especially closely with higher education and
               economic development organizations

         Goal II. – Foster an innovative business creation environment that embraces an
         entrepreneurial culture and that creates and nourishes home grown businesses capable of
         continuously providing new and innovative goods and services




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         Background

         The Strategy Committee noted that some areas of the region are currently too dependent on
         one or two major industries. The region‘s mature industries—textiles and apparel, among
         others—have been devastated by global competition. The region has created few new
         industries to replace these jobs and take full advantage of global market opportunities.
         Innovation is the solution to replacing the lost jobs in traditional industries.

         Education is the first prerequisite for innovative behavior, but it is not sufficient for the
         region‘s long-term success. Innovation represents a focus on the future, depends on
         entrepreneurial behavior, excels when ―smart, talented‖ people apply their know-how and
         skills, and can be found within existing businesses – no matter their industry.

         Capital, facilities, management advice, and marketing assistance are four areas important to
         promoting innovative, entrepreneurial behavior in area firms. Of these issues, many
         Strategy Committee members felt that the single most critical challenge facing most
         entrepreneurial enterprises is lack of equity capital (from seed to venture capital). Golden
         LEAF has been instrumental in helping one such funding network: the Defense Ventures
         Fund (DVF). DVF targets defense-related businesses to entrepreneurs in financial
         packaging, not only to access funding from angel networks, but also to access other sources
         including banks and Small Business Administration (SBA) lenders. Even so, financing
         sources such as the DVF are not visible to or frequently go untapped by economic
         developers and small business persons in the ECC region. This financing model might also
         be employed for other target clusters, such as marine trades.

         Any response to the capital access challenge should also address what one participant
         called ―a huge gap‖ in funding opportunities at the low economic end. Financial
         information exchange and business mentoring are both key needs for these types of
         enterprises. The region features at least one successful incubator, which provides both
         space and management assistance to new companies. While this approach has worked in
         some areas, not everyone on the Strategy Committee agreed that incubators would address
         the fundamental local challenges to creating new entrepreneurs.

         In addition, the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center (Rural Center)
         received a $2 million grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to (1) develop a directory of
         entrepreneurial education programs including distance education; (2) provide technical
         assistance to community brokers of entrepreneurial services to eliminate ―wrong turns‖ and
         ―road blocks,‖ (3) provide outreach and education about existing capital program including
         the development of angel networks; (4) develop business-to-business networks, local
         entrepreneurs' clubs, mentor/apprentice arrangements and topical forums; and (5) conduct
         ―Homegrown Jobs‖ workshops and an annual entrepreneurship summit to inform local and
         state policy makers about the power of entrepreneurship as a rural economic development
         strategy.

         In addition to entrepreneurship, Strategy Committee members suggested that existing
         businesses should become a much higher priority for the region‘s economic development.
         The Committee suggested that the region‘s strategy should consider ways to link existing



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         companies—especially those in targeted clusters—to available resources.

         Implementation Action Plan & Convening Partners

                  Objective II. A. - Cultivate entrepreneurs as a major source of economic growth
                  for the region

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Inventory of entrepreneurial assets (building on Rural Center initiatives)
         Identification of program gaps
         Development of educational program for elected and non-elected leaders regarding
                 entrepreneurship (―entrepreneurs‘ forum‖)
         Completion of benchmark analysis of new business formation
         Establishment of annual ―entrepreneurs‘ forum‖
         Development of marketing programs
         Development of cohesive ―entrepreneurial program marketing‖ plan

         Proposed convening partners
         North Carolina‘s Eastern Region in close collaboration with the NC Rural Economic
         Center and the Neuse River Development Authority

                  Objective II. B. - Invest in promoting improvements in efforts to retain and grow
                  the region‘s existing businesses

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Implementation of economic development summit – with emphasis on the needs of
                 existing industry
         Completion of benchmark evaluation study of existing business services, including
                 industrial extension and other retention efforts
         Baseline and follow-on data about business satisfaction rates with and market
                 penetration rates for existing business services programs
         Identification of the most effective incentives required and elimination of ineffective
                 incentive programs
         New or revamped statewide incentives for business expansion and retention

         Proposed convening partners
         North Carolina Department of Commerce in close collaboration with North
               Carolina‘s Eastern Region

         Goal III. – Develop a global image for eastern North Carolina that promotes its
         competitive location for business and defines the region‘s competitive advantages in the
         global economy

         Background

         Strategy Committee members agreed that the nine-county ECC region has no clear identity



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         outside the region or the state, but the question is whether the region could actually develop
         a global identity if it were to focus only on its traditional ―brand‖ as central eastern North
         Carolina or the Global TransPark development zone.

         In discussing this question, the Strategy Committee felt that the region might find greater
         success by collaborating with organizations serving other parts of eastern North Carolina to
         develop a ―super-regional‖ brand. As an example, the Foundation of Renewal for Eastern
         North Carolina (―For ENC,‖) has developed a campaign focused on the towns and cities of
         the Intracoastal Waterway that builds on the ―Venture East – Inner Banks‖ (IBX) as a
         regional tourism brand. The councils of government in Northeast and Southeast North
         Carolina also have a related impediment to building their own identity.

         By building a regional brand and related marketing strategy, all areas of Eastern North
         Carolina would be able to tout certain advantages as part of their asset base in their
         respective marketing materials or sales presentations–such as a nearby beach (along the
         Atlantic Ocean), a regional medical institution (at East Carolina University), a significant
         military presence, and a sizable airport presence (in the form of the four regional airports).

         The Strategy Committee suggested that the effort of creating a viable identity should begin
         by building partnerships with other regional organizations. By acting together, the region
         might well be able to develop a broader brand that takes advantage of key assets (such as
         the Atlantic Beaches, Global TransPark, and so forth) and helps to brand ―Eastern North
         Carolina‖ as a preferred location for knowledge-economy businesses.

         Whatever the ultimate brand identity, the Strategy Committee concluded that a professional
         marketing firm will likely be needed to assist in developing a brand and in facilitating
         collaboration with the NC Department of Commerce, the partnerships, ―For ENC,‖ and
         ECC.

         Beyond its identity, the Strategy Committee also expressed concern that limited access to
         adequate fresh water supplies and waste water treatment capacity will likely be major
         issues facing the entire region as development continues. Historically, most of the
         communities drew their water from the region‘s underlying aquifers, but steady population
         and industrial growth have combined to drop ground water levels and allow salt water to
         intrude into some areas previously occupied by fresh water. To address this problem, the
         General Assembly passed Capacity Use legislation in 2002 that require communities to
         reduce usage or find other water sources to sustain their growth. This same economic
         growth has begun to strain the capacity of waste water treatment facilities to handle the
         discharge as well.

         Regional cooperation will be important in addressing the water and wastewater issue, with
         collaborative activity already underway in the Kinston area. Responding to this challenge
         may also require creative regional solutions. At the state level, North Carolina‘s Rural
         Center has implemented the Water 2030 initiative, aimed at providing ideas for local
         jurisdictions on how to address this concern.




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         During their deliberations, the Strategy Committee also discussed how regional leaders
         might support efforts of the North Carolina Military Business Center at Fayetteville
         Technical Community College and its branch at Craven Community College‘s Havelock
         campus. This asset could help to support entrepreneurs and contractors in finding ways to
         take greater advantage of the state‘s military bases as a market for local products and
         services.

         Implementation Action Plan & Convening Partners

                  Objective III. A. - Create a cogent, cohesive regional marketing brand for business
                  development in the ECC Region

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Acquire funding and expertise to support brand development
         Complete new brand buy-in and design process
         Develop a marketing plan design and roll-out
         Identify key strengths, emphasize positives
         Spread message far and wide to people who travel elsewhere

         Proposed convening partners
         North Carolina‘s Eastern Region in close collaboration with adjacent regional
               partnerships and Foundation of Renewal for Eastern North Carolina (For ENC)

                  Objective III. B. - Update the concept of the Global TransPark as a valued
                  ―knowledge-economy‖ asset

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Assessment of current GTP concept plan and development of alternative concepts
         Adoption of refined GTP concept plan, including identification of investment needs
         Development of resource plan (including related legislative advocacy) to support the
                refined GTP concept plan
         Acquisition of resources to support major infrastructure investment needs
         Increased development activity at the GTP, including completion of any proposed
                ―seed‖ projects

         Proposed convening partners
         Global TransPark Authority and Foundation (proposed)

                  Objective III. C. - Focus marketing and business development to attract companies
                  in the targeted clusters

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Development of collateral marketing materials including regional website portal for
                 marketing to targeted industries
         Identification of local expert resources and relevant regional assets related to each of
                 the targeted clusters



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         Increased marketing leads disseminated to stakeholder partners within targeted clusters
         Implementation of on-going marketing research in support of on-going marketing/sales
         activities related to each cluster

         Proposed convening partners
         North Carolina‘s Eastern Region working closely in collaboration with NC Department of
         Commerce, area chambers of commerce, councils of government, and local economic
         development organizations

         Goal IV. – Develop urban and outdoor amenities that create an attractive environment in
         which businesses and citizens can live, work and play

         Background

         The ―third place‖ refers to the amenities that residents and workers enjoy during their
         leisure time away from home or work. The Strategy Committee agreed that the region lacks
         many of the amenity assets important to young professionals, but were unsure how best to
         remedy this situation. However, the region does have a unique opportunity to link the
         experience and knowledge of retirees to ―the third place‖ and to use retirees‘ skills to
         advance the region.

         Tourism development authorities frequently use ―third place‖ amenities as assets they
         promote. For instance, the region‘s water assets (for boating, fishing, small boat launches,
         and beach-oriented activities) are vital amenity assets. However, the region has not paid
         close attention to some of these assets. For instance, the region has lost much of its public
         water access to private development. The Strategy Committee felt that coastal communities
         must address this access issue to ensure that tourists and residents alike have an opportunity
         to enjoy public waterways. Likewise, concerns about dredging can have both a positive and
         negative consequence on the region‘s amenities. To the extent that dredging damages the
         environment, it can have negative consequences. To the extent that it makes waterways
         accessible for leisure crafts, dredging can have positive consequences.

         In addition, the region‘s college towns and marine-oriented communities could serve as
         ―hot spots‖ to encourage urban-related activities. Efforts to ensure that the region retains or
         adds appropriate amenities should focus on promoting revitalization of unique commercial
         areas in all small towns. The goal in each case is to help communities of all sizes both to
         provide local services and offer distinctive activities that make them appealing to residents
         and tourists.

         Implementation Action Plan & Convening Partners

                  Objective IV. A. - Sustain an ecological environment that ensures adequate
                  capacity and quality to reinforce the region‘s growth strategy

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Accepted criteria related to environmental stewardship to incorporate in making
               appropriate economic development investments


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         Identification of potential regional (multi-community) collaborations that might be
                 encouraged and/or incentivized
         Public water conservation information campaign plan
         Study of new technologies to obtain, move, and store water

         Proposed convening partners
         Ad hoc network of the area councils of government water/sewer resource planning
               officials facilitated by NCER (proposed)

                  Objective IV. B. - Continue efforts to enhance lifestyle amenities

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Comprehensive inventory of recreational assets and area ―small town‖ improvement
                 initiatives, including baseline of current attendance levels
         Identification of key amenities ―beyond the region‖ that should be integrated into area
                 marketing efforts
         Marketing messages associated with area recreation and ―small town‖ assets
         Regional plan for enhancing and supporting area recreational and ―small town‖ assets

         Proposed convening partners
         Ad hoc network of the area councils of government recreation planning and tourism
               officials facilitated by NCER (proposed)

                  Objective IV. C. - Convene a permanent regional tourism partnership

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Study of regional brand and related marketing options
         Process of achieving regional acceptance of brand
         Development of collaborative tourism website and other marketing materials
         Regional tourism brand
         Tourism marketing program

         Proposed convening partners
         Ad hoc association of area tourism officials with facilitated

         Goal V. – Improve the region‘s connectivity to establish easy, affordable access to move
         people, goods and information throughout the region and to other regions

         Background

         The Strategy Committee examined a number of issues related to the region‘s connectivity,
         but decided that three priorities require immediate attention from regional leaders:
         highways, waterways, and broadband access.

         First, the Strategy Committee concluded that the region needs greater access to interstate-
         quality highways (especially through improvements to U.S. 70, U.S. 17, U.S. 258) and



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         needs projects already in the state‘s Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) to be
         implemented. The Strategy Committee urged the region to get behind these projects, in
         whatever way is necessary—by offering support, writing letters, and providing advocacy
         for road improvements.

         A key question regarding moving any of these highway efforts forward is how best to
         finance upgrades or improvements given limited state budgets. While regional leaders
         agreed that they should advocate for efforts to prevent the legislature from raiding the
         highway trust fund to pay for ―non-highway‖ expenditures, members suggested that even if
         the legislature repays all of the funds removed to date, the replenished Fund would still not
         have sufficient resources to meet current highway planning and construction needs.

         Using alternative financing mechanisms to get projects such as U.S. 70 completed (outside
         the TIP process) should also be considered. Many Strategy Committee members support
         exploring tolls and other methods, if they were used to speed up the completion of these
         regionally important projects.

         The Strategy Committee also identified the increased silt in the area's inlets and
         Intracoastal Waterway as an issue that could have a significant negative impact on the
         region‘s and state‘s economy. This silting is a result of federal funding cuts that limit the
         amount of regular dredging activity, and therefore decreases the amount of boat traffic.

         The Strategy Committee also expressed concern about the region‘s internet capabilities.
         Businesses and residents alike complain of limited access to broadband, slow data transfer
         speeds, and relatively high costs. These factors hinder the region‘s competitive position.
         Rural areas are being left behind their urban counterparts economically in areas in which
         broadband access is not competitive.

         Strategy Committee members considered a number of other critical issues such as rail and
         air passenger service. While the Strategy Committee agreed that these issues are indeed
         important, they opted to select priorities in which progress was considered relatively
         feasible in the short term. For instance, air passenger service is indeed inadequate, but the
         solutions offered may not generate regional support.

         Implementation Action Plan & Convening Partners

                  Objective V. A. - Provide resources and advocacy to complete highest priority
                  highway transportation initiatives

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Incorporation of related projects into the TIP
         Creation of advocacy group(s) to support advancement of priority projects
         Alternative Transportation Financing Summit

         Proposed convening partners
         Area metropolitan and rural planning organizations (MPOs/RPOs)




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                  Objective V. B. - Increase investment in dredging and beach nourishment along the
                  Intracoastal Waterway

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Economic impact study completion
         Federal and state funding advocacy activities

         Proposed convening partners
         Ad hoc alliance of tourism and port officials facilitated (proposed)

                  Objective V. C. - Promote universal access to high speed, low cost broadband
                  service

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Completion of detailed study of universal access gaps
         Identification of incentives

         Proposed convening partners
         E-NC Authority with regional support from NCER (proposed)

         Goal VI. – Improve regional governance to develop collaborative leadership that
         encourages active participation in identifying and solving regional issues

         Background

         The Strategy Committee noted that ECC has a unique role in promoting regional economic
         development. Federal and state granting agencies are increasingly incorporating
         requirements for counties and municipalities to collaborate as part of their funding
         criterion. For instance, many water and sewer projects and other similar efforts are now
         being funded primarily on a regional basis while individual communities are no longer
         eligible for certain awards.

         While ECC was initially formed to play a supporting role to local economic development
         efforts, the Strategy Committee agreed that it may well be time to revamp the ECC‘s
         approach to the new economic development realities. Changes in the economy and a need
         for greater regional collaboration are compelling ECC to take a stronger leadership role.
         Yet, ECC must also be careful not to duplicate current local economic development
         activities.

         Currently, the region‘s nine counties tend to focus on their individual county efforts. The
         Strategy Committee felt that ECC should focus its efforts on ―regionally important‖ efforts
         that no single county in the region can handle on their own.

         ECC has a special role in managing and implementing the CEDS. The Strategy Committee
         suggested that ECC‘s role should be to bring stakeholders and allies together around each
         of the proposed strategies.



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         Implementation Action Plan & Convening Partners

                  Objective VI. A. - Align the ECC economic development goals with those of the
                  NCER and other regional partners to provide a unified plan for regional economic
                  development

         Proposed implementation milestones
         New CEDS aligned with NCER Vision Plan
         Redesign of ECC resource allocation plan

         Proposed convening partners
         ECC, NCER and other regional partners

                  Objective VI. B. - Manage and monitor CEDS implementation

         Proposed implementation milestones
         Creation of on-going implementation committee (i.e., evolution of Strategy Committee) to
         monitor on-going efforts
         On-going monitoring and reporting of outcome metrics and implementation
                milestones from all CEDS actions

         Proposed convening partners
         ECC




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                                          PERFORMANCE MEASURERS

         IX.      PERFORMANCE MEASURES

         Many of the objectives and related measures of performance are designed to measure
         improvements in core weaknesses of the region‘s ability to attract investment and create,
         retain and recruit jobs. Overall performance of the CEDS is ultimately measured by the
         number of jobs created and retained; number, amount and types of investments made; and
         changes in the economic environment of the region.

         The total number of projected jobs to be created in the region over the 5-year CEDS
         timeframe is 7,600. This includes 5,800 new jobs form private sector expansion, 1,450 jobs
         from recruitment and 350 new jobs tourism related jobs.

         Many of the CEDS goals, objectives and projects related to education and innovation target
         the region‘s ability to retain jobs. Measuring the number of jobs retained is difficult, but
         firsthand involvement with the region‘s economic development process allows ECC to
         estimate that more than $1,000 jobs will be retained as a result of implementing the CEDS.

         Private sector investment in the region is estimated to average $110 million annually over
         the 5-year CEDS timeframe, for a total of $550 million. It is projected that over the 5-year
         CEDS timeframe ____ investments will be made in the region covering a range of industry
         groups, including……from clusters…..

         Goal I. – Develop knowledge capacity of regional residents and institutions to promote
         lifelong education as a core value of the region‘s citizens

                  Objective I. A. - Develop a regional education policy and targets for increased
                  educational attainment and a culture for learning

         Performance Measures
         Student achievement results (e.g. ‗Adequate Yearly Progress‘ accountability
                measures)
         High school completion rate
         College-going rate
         6-year college completion rate
         Number of mentors and volunteers supporting youth education
         Value of federal and other funding supporting educational achievement activities
         Percent of area residents deeming post-secondary education as ―very important‖ (from
         household attitude survey results)
         Employment of residents in targeted clusters

                  Objective I. B. - Expand the existing base of ―special-focus‖ education and training
                  opportunities for adults consistent with regional industry clusters




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         Performance Measures

         Adult workers participating in area education and training programs
         Number of completers of education and training programs (for targeted industry clusters)

         Goal II. – Foster an innovative business creation environment that embraces an
         entrepreneurial culture and that creates and nourishes home grown businesses capable of
         continually providing new and innovative goods and services.

                  Objective II. A. - Cultivate entrepreneurs as a major source of economic growth
                  for the region

         Performance Measures
         Number of business formations and new proprietorships
         Amount of business capital investment made
         Amount of seed and venture capital invested in area enterprises
         Employment in firms with 10 or less workers

                  Objective II. B. - Invest in promoting improvements in efforts to retain and grow
                  the region‘s existing businesses

         Performance Measures
         Fewer mass layoffs
         Company announcements of new products lines
         Total firm investments and cost savings reported by Industrial Extension Service clients
         Total economic output (or value-added) and productivity
         Increased payroll per worker in targeted industries (relative to inflation)

         Goal III. – Develop a global image for eastern North Carolina that promotes its
         competitive location for business and defines the region‘s competitive advantage in the
         global economy

                  Objective III. A. - Create a cogent, cohesive regional marketing brand for business
                  development in the ECC Region

         Performance Measures
         Number of organizations using a common Eastern NC brand

                  Objective III. B. – Update the concept of the Global TransPark as a valued
                  ―knowledge-economy‖ asset

         Performance Measures
             Amount of square fee under development
             Size and the investment in GTP
             Number of jobs created on site




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             Objective III. C. - Focus marketing and business development to attract companies in
             the targeted clusters

         Performance Measures
         Number of new projects announced for target industry clusters
         Amount of total investments announced related to target industry clusters
         Number of jobs created in target industry clusters

         Goal IV. – Develop urban and outdoor amenities that create an attractive environment in
         which businesses and citizens can live, work and play

                  Objective IV. A. – Sustain an ecological environment that ensures adequate
                  capacity and quality to reinforce the region‘s growth strategy

         Performance Measures
             Increase total water and sewer capacity
             Number of ―regional‖ (multi-community) water and sewer authorities created
             Reduction in water usage per capita and per business establishment

             Objective IV. B. – Continue efforts to enhance lifestyle amenities

         Performance Measures
             Increased visitation to regional recreational and small town assets
             Number of special events held in the region
             Increased number/ quality of key recreational and ―small town‖ assets included in
               area inventory

             Objective IV. C. – Convene a permanent regional tourism partnership

         Performance Measures
         Expenditures ($millions) by area tourists
         Payroll ($millions) in area‘s tourism-related industries
         Employment (thousands) in area‘s tourism-related industries
         State Tax Receipts ($millions) from area tourism-related transactions
         Local Tax Receipts ($millions) from area tourism-related transactions

         Goal V. – Improve the region‘s connectivity to establish easy, affordable access to move
         people, goods and information throughout the region and to other regions

                  Objective V. A. - Provide resources and advocacy to complete highest priority
                  highway transportation initiatives

         Performance Measures
         Completion of interstate-quality upgrades to US 70, US 17, and US 258
         Completion of maintenance improvements to I-95




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                  Objective V. B. – Increase investment in dredging and beach nourishment along
                  the Intracoastal Waterway

         Performance Measures
             Amount of Federal and state investment in Intracoastal waterway dredging
               activities

             Objective V. C. – Promote universal access to high speed, low cost broadband service

         Performance Measures
             Household broadband penetration rates
             Relative cost of broadband internet access

         Goal VI. – Improve regional governance to develop collaborative leadership that
         encourages active participation in identifying and solving regional issues

                  Objective VI. A. - Align the ECC economic development goals with those of the
                  NCER and other regional partners to provide a unified plan for regional economic
                  development

         Performance Measures
         The number of joint projects with NCER and other regional partners

                  Objective VI. B. – Manage and monitor CEDS implementation

         Performance Measures
             Number of job created
             Total investment from all participating partners in CEDS initiatives




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         2007 CEDS                                  INTEGRATING CEDS WITH STATE ECONOMIC PRIORITES
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                    INTEGRATING CEDS WITH STATE ECONOMIC PRIORITIES

         X. INTEGRATING CEDS WITH STATE ECONOMIC PRIORITIES

         The State of North Carolina has an Economic Development Board. This Board is
         responsible for creating and updating North Carolina's economic development strategic
         plan. In 1994, the Board wrote its first state strategic plan, making North Carolina a High
         Performance State.

         In July 1999, the Board released an updated strategic plan that:
              Highlighted the state's economic development accomplishments since 1994
              Reiterated ongoing needs outlined in the 1994 plan and
              Introduced new strategies reflecting changes and trends in the North Carolina
                 economy.

         In 2001, Governor Easley charged the Board with developing a new comprehensive
         strategic economic development plan that takes innovative and strategic approaches to such
         issues as incentives, workforce development, and the development of science and future
         technologies. The Board unveiled its plan, We Are Changing the Way We Do Business, in
         October 2002 and is working to implement the plan, along with staff and advisors, through
         advocacy and ongoing accountability reviews with the state's economic development
         agencies.

         The strategic plan was updated in 2004, 2006, and again in 2007. The most recent version
         of the plan was presented to the Economic Development Board at the April 2007 meeting.

         To formulate this plan, the Board's seven committees examined issues in their designated
         policy focus areas and made recommendations to the full Board for final action. The Board
         has organized the committees to focus on seven major areas of economic development in
         North Carolina, including:
              Community Readiness and Urban Development
              Infrastructure, Transportation and the Environment
              Recruitment and Retention
              Rural Development Issues
              Science, Technology and University Outreach
              Tourism, Film, Sports, Arts and Cultural Resources
              Workforce Development and Education

         Each committee was aided by staff of a corresponding Department of Commerce division
         and by advisors from other state agencies, private companies and non-profit organizations.

         The 2007 Executive Summary takes the updated 2004 plan and focuses individually on
         each of these seven goals and the most recent accomplishments.

         The seven major goals include:
             Develop an Outstanding Education System and a Highly Qualified Workforce


                                                     EasternCarolinaCouncil                                     - 71 -
         2007 CEDS                                  INTEGRATING CEDS WITH STATE ECONOMIC PRIORITES
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


                 Invest in Science, Technology, and University Outreach
                 Ensure a Competitive Environment for the Recruitment and Retention of Business,
                  Capital Investment and Jobs Creation Create Strong Metropolitan Growth Centers
                  that Generate Regional Business
                 Development, Shared Prosperity, and a High Quality of Life, in Partnership with
                  Surrounding Areas
                 Develop Thriving Rural Areas That Maintain a High Quality of Life
                 Develop a Competitive Regionally Based Infrastructure and Promote Sustainable
                  Economic Development
                 Maintain and Strengthen Tourism, Film, and Sports Industries; Preserve, Protect,
                  and Promote Our State‘s Cultural, Natural, and Heritage Assets.

         http://www.nccommerce.com/en/AboutDOC/CommerceBoardsCommissions/NorthCarolin
         aEconomicDevelopmentBoard

         ECC obtained a copy of these goals and incorporated them into the CEDS.




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