Colorado is a great place to grow a business. Colorado has a superb quality of life and unparalleled opportunities for recreation in addition to a highly-educated and competitive workforce. These are key attributes for retaining and growing existing Colorado companies as well as recruiting new companies. Through a more analytical understanding of and focus on our core industry clusters, as well as increased coordination within the economic development community, Colorado is poised for economic growth. It is also important to focus on aligning infrastructure improvements (transportation, energy, telecommunications and resource management) with economic development priorities to ensure economic vitality in communities from every corner of Colorado.
Upon taking office on January 11, 2011, Governor John Hickenlooper signed Executive Order D 2011-003, directing a new statewide economic development strategy based on local and regional collaboration. Instead of a “top-down” strategic plan developed exclusively by “experts” the Governor directed that a plan be developed with a “bottom-up” approach. The final outcome of this effort is a statewide blueprint for economic development.
Continued pursuit of economic development opportunities for the Energy industry—including advances in technology innovation, policy and regulation, and education and training—will be crucial to strengthening the Colorado economy now and in the future. Through the Colorado Blueprint process, the state has focused on the Energy industry—as 1 of 14 Key Industries. The joint effort between the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT), Colorado Energy Office (CEO), Colorado Department of Natural Resources (DNR), and Colorado Department of PublicHealth and Environment (CDPHE) is designed to develop a strategic economic development report for the Colorado Energy industry that provides actionable recommendations for advancing the industry over the next 6–18 months. This report, prepared by BCS for the State of Colorado’s participating agencies, provides an overview of the economic importance of the Energy industry to the state, assesses current challenges to overcome and opportunities to pursue, and provides a set of strategic recommendations for the industry and state to consider for advancing the Energy industry and economy. In developing this report for the Energy Key Industry Network (Energy KIN), BCS reached out to more than 400 Energy industry leaders and facilitated a statewide energy listening tour, as well as focused meetings with the Steering Committee and Tactical Teams. This report provides the recommended strategies and actions identified by the Steering Committee and Tactical Teams and will serve as input for a future statewide energy plan that will be developed by the state. It will also serve as a framework for collaborative initiatives among industry, academia, and state organizations to pursue and undertake activities for the benefit of increasing the global competitiveness of the Energy industry in Colorado.
Key Industry Network Lisetning Session Summaries
As partners, CEO and OEDIT conducted a state-wide economic development assessment to outline strategies to sustain and grow Colorado’s energy industry. The effort was aimed to identify key energy industry trends to develop a comprehensive plan to grow Colorado’s energy economy. The assessment included 8 listening sessions spread out across the State. Beloow are the summaries for each session.