Between Eagles Landing, Mesa Valley Estates and Starbucks, there will be 160 new jobs added to the Mesquite workforce in 2019. Overall, 384 jobs have been created in the last five years that are directly connected to work performed by Mesquite Region Economic Development (MRED).
That excludes indirect jobs and temporary jobs with projects such as the I-15 Exit 118 construction and building the infrastructure for natural gas.
That’s according to Colton Teerlink, CEO of MRED, during his annual presentation to the Mesquite City Council at their meeting Tuesday, Feb. 26. Teerlink became the head of MRED in May 2018 following a rapid turnover of two other CEOs.
The city contracts its economic development activities to MRED at a current cost of $190,000 a year. The contract cost sunk as low as $140,000 in 2015-16. Teerlink’s presentation compared that to previous expenditures of anywhere between $224,000 in 2011-12 to a high of $323,100 in 2008-09 when the city used in-house resources for the work.
The city’s costs for economic development shows that it paid an average of $274,444 a year for in-house work from 2007 to 2012 and an average of $175,000 a year to MRED between 2013 and 2018.
In addition to the jobs created, MRED took credit for an additional $64 million in capital investment in 2018 alone and an additional $1.2 million in local business licenses and fees, building permits, and taxes paid by new businesses over the last five years.
Teerlink said that for every dollar that’s been invested in MRED, there has been a six dollar return from just the fees and taxes paid to the city. Adding in the amount of capital investment, the return jumps to $326 for every dollar invested.
In a disappointing disclosure, Teerlink said that the REV Recreation Group, Inc. would not be constructing a new recreational vehicle support center in Mesquite. REV privately purchased an 11 acre site on Commerce Circle in the Mesquite Technical and Commerce Center (MTCC) on the west side of town next to the current Star Nursery for $450,000 three years ago.
In February 2016 they announced a 40,000 square foot facility with about 40 service technicians and 10 staff positions. REV also planned to later expand the building to 80,000 square feet and about 70 employees.
“Enough changes occurred in their business model as they became heavily involved in mergers and acquisitions that building a facility in Mesquite was no longer on the table,” Teerlink said. The land is back up for sale.
Teerlink said MRED is working on numerous leads for new businesses and companies and credits the new natural gas pipeline as an added draw. “We are focusing on smaller companies with five to 20 employees for future development that are often overlooked in larger markets,” he said.