Leelanau County debates economic strategies

Leelanau County leaders discuss economic future.

â??Is economic development a responsibility of the Leelanau County Board, or is it something that the private sector needs to handle?â?? â?? Leelanau County Administrator Chet Janik.

Leelanau County leaders are trying to decide how they should support the Countyâ??s economic future.

In April, commissioners moved toward a hands-off approach, as they discussed the idea of abolishing its economic development corporation.

â??The question is, whatâ??s the impact of that funding? What are the tangible results of that funding? So that led to the whole discussionâ?¦and there was no disagreement between board members that it was time to restructure,â?? Janik said.

Janik said, as of now, the corporation has not been officially abolished.

But expansion has not only been stalled from inside the County. There also has been reluctance to join outside institutions.

Leelanau County Commissioners have also rejected an offer to join the Traverse Bay Economic Development Council.

â??We were disappointed that the County Commissioners decided to not pursue a strategy for economic development...but in retrospect, they really did a favor by going back and looking at the whole economic process in Leelanau County and looking at the infrastructure for going through a strategic planning process,â?? said President Doug Luciani, Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce.

Luciani said he is hopeful that a partnership can be made in the future.