Elkhart

Regional Cities Funding Allocations Moving Forward

Aug 18, 2016
Courtesy John Perlich

State officials have approved the first projects for funding from the Regional Cities Initiative and could approve dozens more in the coming weeks.

The three approved so far are in the Northeast region, which is taking a different approach to the planning process than its counterparts in North Central and Southwest Indiana.

At this weekend's U.S. Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis, leaders from cities big and small are brainstorming ways to collaborate on economic growth, rather than competing.

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg says that approach is already catching on in Indiana.

Outside a session with the mayors of Boston and New York, Buttigieg said his city of 100,000 is just big enough to have all the problems of a major metro area:

 

J.D. Gray

President Obama returned to Elkhart Wednesday seeking to bring a major part of his presidency full circle, trumpeting what he sees as the city's and the nation’s economic resurgence. 

But as Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Brandon Smith reports, the president’s speech actually was more about looking forward than looking back.

J.D. Gray

President Barack Obama is shining a spotlight on Elkhart, Indiana – the first city he visited as president – calling it a symbol of America’s economic recovery.

Obama returned Wednesday with a message defends his legacy while laying the groundwork for a Democratic victory this fall.

When the president visited in 2009, unemployment was nearly 20 percent in the community that heavily relies on manufacturing and the recreational vehicle industry,

Seven years later, that rate is now below four percent. 

JD Gray/WTIU

North Central Indiana is hoping new state funds and collaborations will help attract workers and diversify local economies.

That's especially challenging in Elkhart, known as the recreational vehicle capital of the world -- and the city with the nation's highest unemployment rate during the recession.

Now, the RV industry is booming -- but that's created problems of its own.

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