Jobs and Economic Vitality for ALL of Deschutes County
Are Wages Rising for Deschutes County Workers? It’s Complicated…
Article by Damon Runberg
A lot of attention is being paid to wages in Deschutes County. Have workers in Deschutes County seen substantive wage gains over the past several years?
My number one priority and the cornerstone of my work is job creation. High tech, renewable energy, biomass, efficient building practices, general aviation and tourism all have great potential. I welcome the OSU Cascades campus and the new workforce being developed. I work closely with the economic development organizations in Deschutes county to support creating jobs in Bend, Redmond, Sisters and La Pine.
Since elected in 2011, I have served as a leader helping our Deschutes County citizens through challenging economic times – we stand now, poised to help our people to not only live in the best place in Oregon, but to earn a better standard of living for our families, while enjoying what nature has blessed us with.
During my term, I have advanced programs and policies to attract business to Central Oregon, to assist with financing expansion and in the process, hire more employees at good wages and to promote new startup businesses by setting the stage to attract talented employees and capital investments.
For example, we launched and expanded a forgivable loan program, keyed to job growth, helping local businesses expand; companies like Energyneering Solutions in Sisters, Central Oregon Trucking in Redmond and Navis in Bend. While Bend and Redmond continue to lead the charge for economic progress, our rural areas often lag behind – so my fellow commissioners and I prioritized funding to match local contributions for Economic Development Programs in Sisters and La Pine. These efforts are helping businesses today and building the foundation for opportunities tomorrow. We did this and more, while keeping tax rates low and positioning the region for growth in emerging business areas like software technology, medical devices, services, manufacturing and renewable energy.
I serve on the board for Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) , our regional center of expertise on starting, growing or moving businesses to our area and served as President for 2015-2016, by area industry leaders, my fellow board members.
The table below shows results for economic development efforts in Central Oregon for past three fiscal years:
I sincerely hope voters are as proud of these results as I am. These are the kind of policies to promote growth needed for a vibrant economy. Yet we have more work to do. Economic Development is a team sport.
Employment in Central Oregon
Click here to see the August 2017 Report
Reports created by The State of Oregon Employment Department
Deschutes County is a great place to live, work and play. As a County Commissioner, I work hard to ensure that we have living wage jobs that empower residents to thrive here for generations to come.
In order to achieve this goal, we need to diversify our economy. High Tech, Renewable Energy/Efficient Building Practices, General Aviation and Tourism are all areas in which we have great potential.
I pledge to work with ALL of Deschutes County to create economic opportunity and maintain our high quality of life.
Make donations payable to:
Citizens for Tony DeBone
PO Box 3054, La Pine, OR 97739
tel. (541) 728-3012