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NEWS | Columbia City Employer to Invest Millions to Create Employee Housing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

COLUMBIA CITY, Ind. (Sept. 26, 2019) – Local business owner and employer, Jerry Busche, was a finalist selected to participate in the Anchor Employer Workforce Housing Program.
The Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA) has awarded $1 million to Impact CNC, owned by Jerry Busche, to address Indiana’s workforce housing shortage. Impact CNC was one of four finalists: French Lick Resort, IU Health and Zimmer Biomet were also selected. The $1 million IHCDA investment will be matched or exceeded by each participating employer to develop workforce housing in their communities.
In conjunction with the Whitley County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and consultant, Lori Shipman, Impact CNC was selected to receive the matching investment.
“Whitley County is a great place to live, if you can find a place to live,” said Lori Shipman, Whitley County EDC community development consultant. “There are a multitude of jobs but limited housing available for prospective new residents. We are excited for this venture with Jerry Busche and the impact it will have on our community.”
In an effort to meet the demands of the Columbia City area employers, Jerry Busche applied for the grant to build housing for employees.
“We are pleased to partner with these key employers on this innovative approach to addressing the workforce housing needs in our state,” said Indiana Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch. “By participating in this new program, these organizations further prove how important housing is in attracting and retaining talent.”
In the request for proposals released in June, IHCDA asked employers to think creatively and develop a proposal tailored to the needs of the community and submit a Workforce Housing Investment Strategy.
Impact CNC is one of the top ten largest employers in Whitley County and on average, has five job openings at any given time. The primary barrier to hiring workers and bringing them to Columbia City is housing. Workers often look for a rental home for their families while they get settled and can start looking for a single-family home to purchase.
“The housing market impacts hiring and retention,” said Jerry Busche, owner of Impact CNC. “I’m really excited about the potential this project brings and know the investment will go a long way to support skilled manufacturing workers to relocate to Columbia City.”
IHCDA has partnered with Thomas P. Miller and Associates to host a workforce housing workshop in November with each of the selected employers and their partner organizations to further develop the housing plans.

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About Whitley County EDC
The Whitley County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) is the lead economic development agency in Whitley County, Indiana. The EDC works closely with local, regional and state partners to support our industry clients’ growth and success. Our mission is to lead a comprehensive economic development program that retains and expands employment opportunities for local residents and attracts business investment to Whitley County. The Whitley County EDC was established in 1992 and represents Whitley County, Columbia City and the towns of Churubusco, Larwill and South Whitley. For more information about the EDC visit whitleyedc.com.

About IHCDA
IHCDA, chaired by Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch, provides housing opportunities, promotes self-sufficiency and strengthens communities in order to build an Indiana with a sustainable quality of life for all Hoosiers in the community of their choice. For more information, visit www.ihcda.in.gov or www.in.gov/myihcda.

Media Contacts
Kennedy St. George (Whitley County EDC) 260-244-5506 or kstgeorge@whitleyedc.com
Brad Meadows (IHCDA) 317-234-1745 or brmeadows@ihcda.in.gov.