Amy McQueen

Amy McQueen

(Clarinda) -- As part of its plans for this year, Clarinda Economic Development requested a contribution from Page County Board of Supervisors during their meeting Tuesday, Jan. 12.

No action was taken. Last year, the county donated $7,500.

Plans for the organization this year explained by development director Amy McQueen, who started the position late last year, said it will begin researching a site for a new business park.

“There is not a ton of vacant facilities in Clarinda right now,” she said.

Development will also assist the Clarinda school district with the use of what is known as the former Shopko building the district purchased last year. McQueen said work will also look into expanding daycare and broadband Internet.

“Broadband is a huge topic,” she said.

The successes for last year were the sale of a home on West Main Street that it contributed to construction. Improving the housing market is one the development’s ongoing objectives. Another house is under construction on West Clark and is expected to be finished in late March.

“We need housing to fulfill the needs of our employers,” McQueen said.

Development is also researching the addition of multi-family housing.

The city of Clarinda contributed $50,000 last year to economic development. McQueen said the entity has a revolving loan fund for existing businesses that has been used to its full extent. She expects the loan fund program to continue this year.

“We have a big plate and it is full,” she said about the organization.

Morris was understanding of economic development’s objectives.

“Your world is a tough world. People judge you on things pretty harsh. With the revolving retail in our country, it goes far beyond that,” he said.

In other county news…

Page County Veterans Affairs Executive Director Janet Olsen said the Veterans Affairs’ new health clinic under construction in Shenandoah will be occupied in mid February. She doesn’t expect patients to use it until April.

“It’s beautiful. What we can offer now is going to be amazing. You don’t have to go to Omaha for X-rays. This will be nice,” she said.

The operation is not affiliated with Page County Veterans Affairs department.

Olsen said she is working on a program for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder to network with each other.

Supervisors approved Mahlon Sorensen as Attorney for Magistrate Commission retroactive to Jan. 1. He will serve for six years.

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