September Update from Randolph EDC

I received this update a few days ago, from the desk of Kevin Franklin, President of Randolph Economic Development Corporation. It was originally received by Mayor Vicki Caudle, who forwarded it to the town clerk’s office for further distribution. Mr. Franklin’s message begins below.

It’s the first day of September and time for another RCEDC Investor Insights email with news and information we hope you’ll find informative. Your feedback on content is always welcome and appreciated.

EDC Info

Our work with existing industry is going strong. Brantley has called on twenty-three of our established industrial businesses in the past two months and four of those have expressed some level of planning around potential future growth. He’s also getting some great experience offering support in response to a variety of inquiries from our local industry.

Crystal is doing an outstanding job managing RFIs and activity for new business attraction. We have a full pipeline of active projects; since the July 1 start of our fiscal year, we have received 24 project inquiries and have responded to 15 of those with site and/or building submissions. Those 15 active projects represent potential investment of approximately $1.3 billion and roughly 5,500 jobs. We may see only a fraction of that land here, but we definitely see opportunities ahead.

News & Insights

NC Commerce recently posted a brief article titled “Why Every North Carolinian Should Care about the State’s Manufacturing Industry.” It’s a worthwhile quick read and underscores why we do what we do here in Randolph County.

The closure of Klaussner Home Furnishings this month was a significant blow with 800+ employees, many of them long-term, losing their jobs. The efforts of the community to support these displaced workers (your EDC was right in the mix) showed the best of who Randolph County is. While Klaussner was closing, Ramseur’s Amor Furniture was stepping up to grow its business, reopening the former Benchmark Upholstery facility in Staley to fill in some of the production gap left with the closures of Klaussner and UFI.

The Greensboro Chamber recently recognized the original Greensboro-Randolph Megasite ownership group – Randolph County, the North Carolina Railroad, and the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite Foundation (all RCEDC investors) with its Stanley Frank Economic and Workforce Development Award. We appreciate the foresight of these leaders in what ultimately brought Toyota to our community.

Several of our investors have recently been recognized by the Triad Business Journal. Millikan Tractor is a 2023 Family Business Award winner. Engineered Steel Products, Fourth Elm Construction, Graham Personnel Services, Millikan Tractor, and Samet Corporation were on the TBJ’s 2023 Fast 50 list of the fastest growing companies in the Triad. Congrats to these award winners!

North Carolina continues to be cited as a top state for doing business. In early August, Business Facilities ranked NC second on its Best Business Climate list and in the top ten states in a variety of other measures published on their website.

Did You Know?

The EDC website contains a wealth of demographic information about Randolph County, and you can even compare our community with others across the country. Visit the Sites & Buildings page, click on the Explore Communities tab, and start digging around. Looking for labor force info, occupation data, or wage info? It’s all there. If you’d prefer our office to save you the time of exploring, just connect with Lisa and let her know what you’re looking for; there’s a good chance she will be able to generate a report for you.

NCDOT seeks public input to improve transportation access for seniors and disabled individuals in small towns and rural areas.

I received this announcement yesterday, in an email that originated from one of the NCDOT offices. It seems like information many of you might find important. The quoted text begins below:

The N.C. Department of Transportation’s Integrated Mobility Division (NCDOT IMD) is seeking public input to develop its draft plan to improve transportation access for seniors and individuals with disabilities in small urban and rural areas.

The plan was created by NCDOT IMD, planning organizations, and public transportation providers. It identifies opportunities to expand mobility options to seniors and individuals with disabilities, particularly in small urban and rural communities. The public’s feedback will help NCDOT IMD develop strategies that give people in need better access to reliable public transportation around the state.

NCDOT IMD will host three virtual workshops in September (see list below) to educate the public and receive input about the draft Statewide Locally Coordinated Plan, which outlines public transportation improvements from 2025-2029.

Provide feedback through our survey
People can also provide feedback through a public survey, which will remain open until Sept. 28th. You do not have to attend an online workshop to respond to the survey. Click here to take the survey.

Access information any time
virtual room is also available for people to access information about the plan at any time and includes a link to the survey. The virtual room will remain open for the duration of the plan and will be updated as more materials become available.
Click here to visit the Virtual Room.

Sign up for an online workshop
During the virtual workshops, people can receive information on the plan, interact with NCDOT IMD project staff and provide comments. Click on the meeting links below to be taken to the Zoom link to register for the workshops:

After registering, people will receive an email directing them how to join the virtual workshop. 

Funds for the plan and resulting projects come from federal Section 5310 grants – Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities Program and the state Rural Operating Assistance Program.

Once the plan is complete, planning organizations and transit agencies will apply to NCDOT for project funding.