Posted: January 9, 2016
For its second organizational meeting, the Newberry Springs Economic Development
Committee's attendance grew as 21 people attended the January 7, 2016 meeting. Once again
Holly Shiralipour of the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service volunteered her personal
time to act as facilitator for the meeting. She provided an update to the data necessary
for applying for a federal Promise Zone Grant.
Due to a very short window period being given for a Promise Zone application
being filed, the Newberry meeting concentrated on laying the extensive groundwork necessary
to file the application.
The benefits of receiving the grant are multiple. In part,
for a term up to ten years, the federal government will appoint a full time expert to assist the
Promise Zone area acquire grants and expand economic growth. The Promise Zone area
will also receive special access and priority standing to acquire federal grants and
receive coordinated assistance between multiple federal agencies.
Paul Deel starts to write down votes for the formation of a Promise Zone boundary
During the meeting, a subcommittee was established to recommend the boundary
of a proposed Promise Zone for the grant application. This in itself is complicated
because the grant has specific criteria that must be carefully followed. Elected to
the 6-member board is (in alphabetical order) Paul Deel, Paula Deel, Kimberly Hammack (Barstow),
Ellen Johnson, Vickie Paulsen, and Ted Stimpfel (CHR66A).
Attendees Pastor Charles Patrick and wife Gwen.
Ron Frame, Senior Field Representative to Supervisor Robert Lovingood, spoke
about county services. Frame stressed that for Newberry Springs to acquire its vision
of county involvement in its community, Newberry Springs needs to prepare and submit a new
community plan. The county will be introducing its revised General Plan in approximately
3½ years; so Newberry has about 2½ years to submit a new plan.
To present ideas of how new businesses can be established in Newberry Springs,
Ted Stimpfel provided a PowerPoint presentation. The presentation started with an
emphasis upon the need for preservation of the viewscape along Route 66 for tourism and
examples of inexpensive roadside signage. The presentation then utilized the example
of a very popular roadside stop of multiple shops along Interstate-15 in Riverside County;
the principle of which can be successfully copied in Newberry Springs.