Christian County works to secure a solid financial future

CHRISTIAN COUNTY, Mo. For years Christian County has been one of the fastest growing areas in the state.

Now it's trying to lure more major industries across the county line. City leaders in Ozark and Nixa are teaming up. They've created an economic board to make it easier to attract big industries.

"I think that everybody recognizes that development is coming back. We're seeing so many new businesses that are looking at Missouri to locate," said Ozark City Administrator, Steve Childers.

Christian County wants their fair share of the opportunities.

"It's not a model we're creating from scratch. This is the exact same model that is used at the Springfield Business Development Corporation, the Taney County Business Development Corporation. It's a model that works," said Childers.

The economic board called, 'Show Me Christian County' will help pave the way for large industries to consider relocating to the area.

"You need to be competing on this level. If you're not competing at this level, if you're not talking on that level, if you're not using the right language, if you're not creating the right land uses that's ready to go, shovel ready sites, then you're not competing at all," explained Childers.

Andrea Sitzes is charged with finding a way to make Christian County a major player in the business industry.

"It's really looking at how we can put the steps in place now that will help us sustain for future growth," she said.

This will help keep a majority of the people living in Christian County working in Christian County.

"When you think of a business coming to the area, not only do they need to know that they have the workforce that can sustain what they're doing today, but they want to know that they're going to have a workforce 15 or 20 years from now," said Sitzes.

Childers said, "On our own we're just not as strong and competitive, nationally or internationally as we can be working together. We're really going to show everybody what Christian County can do and what Ozark and Nixa can do when we work together."

Show-Me Christian County is also working with local businesses on long term plans.

The executive director of the newly formed organization, Andrea Sitzes, will take over on March 1, 2018.