Iron County is proud of its strong and diversified business base comprised of both small and large retailers, a great service industry and a thriving industrial sector. The region’s major employers include the West Iron School District, Iron County Medical Care Facility, Iron County Community Hospital, Angeli’s Foods Grocery Store, Forest Park School District, Iron River Care Center, Dickinson Iron District Health Department and Aramark Uniform Service.
A number of large manufacturers, employing hundreds of area residents, call the county home including Connor-AGA Sports Flooring Company; Lake Shore, Inc.; Lester Detterbeck Enterprises; DA Mac Pherson, Inc.; Shamion Brothers Logging; Magiglide, Inc.; Dina Mia Kitchens, Inc.; Global Response North; and Northland Publishers.
Further top manufacturers in the county are Northeastern; Ned Lake Timber & Land Co., R.J. Metal Specialty; Northwood Molders, Inc.; Cooks Run Cedar, Inc.; Johnson & Sons Logging, Inc.; Northern Printing & Graphics; Carlson Enterprises, Inc.; Upland Wood Products; and Raymond Iron & Metal, Inc.
Some of the companies are housed in the area’s resourceful industrial parks located in Caspian, Iron River and Crystal Falls. The Crystal Falls Industrial Park has been designated a Renaissance Zone, offering relocating businesses beneficial tax incentives.
Further tax and financial incentives are available to businesses, including a Revolving Loan Fund, which provides flexible and highly-favorable terms, and tax benefits within the cities of Crystal Falls, Iron River and Caspian. Also, commercial and industrial land may be available at no cost if certain job creation conditions are met, with comprehensive business planning and site location assistance available as well.
Support from such organizations as the Iron County Economic Development Corporation and the Iron County Chamber of Commerce have aided in creating a progressive business environment. Looking to the future, the EDC is actively implementing a strategic plan in cooperation with local communities and other countywide groups. Formally adopted in January of 2003, the plan’s goals are to:
• Develop and maintain a strong and effective business retention, expansion and development initiative.
• Support the development of countywide infrastructure, including technology and education, to foster long-term economic health and growth.
• Increase coordination and collaboration by formalizing relationships with other groups within the county, such as the Chamber of Commerce, Tourism Council and the Michigan State University Extension.
• Promote and support planning activities within the county to preserve and improve upon what we have.
In order to achieve these goals, each is supported by a number of specific and measurable objectives. Some of which include securing additional capital to add to the Revolving Loan Fund, utilize marketing strategies, serve in a primary role as developer or development consultant for successful redevelopment projects and form collaborative committees that would hold joint meetings to strategize about additional opportunities.