Economic & Community Development


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Jessica Routzahn
Program Assistant

The Regional Role in Economic & Community Development

The way we live and work is rapidly changing. Through economic and community development, regional councils are making investments, creating long-term strategies, testing innovative ideas, and utilizing their unique ability to convene community stakeholders together to better the livelihood of those they serve.

Regional leaders are partnering with local education and workforce experts to prepare individuals and businesses for new workplace technologies and roles in the economy. A rise in extreme weather events has signaled the necessity for regional communities to make resiliency investments in public infrastructure and facilities. More people are choosing to age in place, causing regional councils hosting Area Agencies on Aging to consider how they can better connect seniors to transportation, healthcare resources, and social activities. Regional councils are continuing to plan for, build, and expand local broadband infrastructure – connecting residents to people, markets, and information faster than ever before. NARC members are also working with their local stakeholders to respond to how the nation’s increasing rent and housing prices are impacting their communities.

Through these actions and more, regional councils are promoting sustainable, workable, and livable communities for the 21st century.

Policies and Priorities

NARC’s Economic and Community Development Policies and Priorities supports the notion that economic and community issues are best solved when communities work together at a regional scale to address them. You can find NARC’s community and economic development priorities here. To promote sustainable, workable, and livable communities for the 21st century, NARC urges the federal government to support regional economic and community development efforts within the following issue areas:

  • Regional Economic Development
  • Economic Development Administration
  • Housing and Community Development
  • Older Americans Act
  • Education and Workforce Development
  • The Census
  • Opportunity Zones
  • Technology and Telecommunications