The Wetzel County Commission has renewed their contract with Regional Economic Development Partnership, RED.
Josh Jefferson, the RED project coordinator who works in Wetzel County, asked for the renewal on Feb. 12 so the group could submit their annual Local Economic Development application resolution. The grant, which covers Wetzel, Marshall, and Ohio counties, requires a 50 percent match. That match is about $32,000 per county. However, he said the Ohio Valley Industrial and Business Development Corporation (OVIBDC), of which RED is a division has provided the match for the past few years and intends to do that again. The OVIBDC is primarily privately funded through their own property development, said Jefferson.
"We look at it from a regional standpoint, it makes a lot of sense for us to represent our region instead of just one county or two counties," said Jefferson.
"Our relationship with you has always been strong," Jefferson told the commission. "We are grateful for the relationship that we have with you."
When in Wetzel County, approximately two times per week, Jefferson sets up an office in the county commission's meeting room.
While Jefferson admitted that economic progress has always been challenging, RED hopes to capitalize on the gas industry growth. "We think there's a lot of opportunity right now," he said.
Noting RED also has a good relationship with the Wetzel County Chamber of Commerce, Jefferson said their contract is with the county. "We continue to work with partners that we have here," said Jefferson.