Based upon a recent report from Mac Warner, West Virginia Secretary of State, Jackson County leads the state in overall new business corporations established in the calendar year of 2017.

Based upon a recent report from Mac Warner, West Virginia Secretary of State, Jackson County leads the state in overall new business corporations established in the calendar year of 2017. In calendar year 2017, Jackson County saw an increase on 10.51% over the prior year.

 Mark Whitley, director of the Jackson County Development Authority, said that this is exciting news for Jackson County and the region. 

 “When you look at the growth that’s happening in the Eastern Panhandle, Morgantown region and the counties surround Jackson County this is very interesting, said Whitley. 

 According to the Secretary of State’s office, Jackson County had 133 new corporations established representing manufacturing, distribution, construction, and small businesses. (This number does not include several sole proprietorship or partnerships.)

 Whitley said 2017 was 

one of the busiest in his 30 years’ experience in Economic Development. 

 “We have averaged approximately seven business loan applications per month with existing and new businesses. We work closely with our finance partners including the West Virginia Development Office, West Virginia Economic Development Authority, Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council, and our local banks,” said Whitley. 

 Access to capital is critical. 

 Whitley also added that the Jackson County Development Authority continues to aggressively market the county both domestically and internationally. 

 “Many of our companies in Jackson County are expanding including our number one employer Constellium. Al-rec has also recently announced a 3-million-dollar expansion,” Whitley said.  

 “Mountaineer Xpress has also contributed greatly in the increase of activity in our office. We have been working with two major contractors and numerous sub-contractors. We have also seen an increase in manufacturing expansions, warehousing, distributions and small business development. When you step back and take a fresh look at Jackson County it’s easy to tout our appeal. Our assets include river, rail, flat land, local educational facilities, healthcare facilities including Jackson General Hospital and great workforce. We have so much to offer businesses looking to invest in a community. “said Whitley.

  One of our major hurdles is lack of infrastructure capacity. We will face future challenges dealing with our current water and sewer demands, most people do not realize that there are moratoriums in several sections of Jackson County dealing with water and sewer issues including the Southern portion of the county. “said Whitley. 

 Whitley went on to say we will all need to work together and explore all opportunities to address our infrastructure needs to allow the county to continue to grow. 

 According to Whitley, Jackson County is once again poised to have a successful 2018, as early as quarter indicators are very interesting.