Study: Foundry could help economy |

Study: Foundry could help economy

Initially, a jewelry design and production foundry in Craig would employ three to four people. Down the road, though, the potential is limitless.

Those were the findings of fea-si–bility study funded by the Craig/Moffat County Economic Development Partnership’s Grow-ing Local Business Program.

Project initiator Bernie Rose attended Thursday’s EDP meeting with consultant Mike Rubeck to report the study’s findings.

“This isn’t just a whim,” Rubeck said. “This is something that can really benefit Craig, Colorado, and be stable for the long term.”

Rose wants to open a bronze art foundry and casting studio. Not only would the plan provide jobs, it also has the potential to partner with the college for vocational training, Rose said.

Rubeck’s study used a lot of information from a very successful Loveland foundry, on which a local one would be patterned.

In Loveland, people have learned skills working at the foundry and opened their own businesses using those skills.

“Once this is developed, once it’s mature, you can see it spreading throughout the community,” Rubeck said.

“I think that’s where the real benefit comes to Craig.”

Rose said his next step is seeking funding for the project, including federal assistance. His plans are to construct a 10,000-square-foot building.

He said his plans were greeted with enthusiasm from potential part-ners and funders.

“I wanted to thank you all for getting me to this point. Now I just have to get to the next level,” he said.

In other business:

The EDP board approved spending $850 to advertise in the Chamber’s Welcome to Craig book-let. The advertisement will contain information about funding opportunities for new businesses and list the services available to help new businesses get started.

The board also agreed to send a letter to the Colorado Office of Economic Development & Interna-tional Trade expressing Craig’s interest in having a proposed medical school here, possibly on property owned by the Moffat County Affiliated Junior College district.

Membership fees, which were increased in February 2004 but did not go into effect for members until this year, will stay the same. EDP board members were concerned that members would not renew at higher rates. A study of membership found that 12 of the 60 members would see an average increase of $750. Dues for three businesses would increase $1,000.

“I think we have to continue to grow and, unless it’s a real hardship on someone, this is the new structure we adopted,” board member Georgina McAnally said.

Members were notified last year to expect the increase.

The nominating committee will meet in April to come up with a list of potential candidates to fill three board seats that will become available in May.

The board members whose seats need to be filled — Chris Nichols, Tonya Griffith and Georgina McAnally — have said they want to run again. The election is May 18 at the organization’s annual meeting.

The board will consider contributing to the Colorado State High School Rodeo Association in a bid to host the 2006 and 2007 state finals in Craig.

Christina M. Currie can be reached at 824-7031 or

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