A group dedicated to setting a vision for Huntsville and beyond is now taking steps to involve the business community. Launch 2035 hopes to shape the next 20 years for Madison, Limestone and Morgan counties.
It was back in July when economic leaders across these three counties made a promise at the Huntsville airport to enhance the workforce across the Tennessee Valley.
The next step in this collaboration is to launch a study on leading practices in workforce development.
"We know we're one of the fastest growing economies in the country, and we've had many job announcements, 25,000 jobs in the Huntsville area alone since 2010," Lucia Cape with the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber said. "So, we know we have these announced jobs to fill, but what we don't understand until we get the results of the study are, what are companies planning to do to fill those jobs that are announced?"
Rick Tucker, the CEO of Port of Huntsville, said it is a proactive effort to bring more industries and businesses to the area.
"We're trying to understand the needs of our industries," Tucker said. "We have many different interviews with companies about what their labor issues are, what are they seeing in the future, and then, how can we work together with the industries in order to prepare our labor force for the jobs of the future?"
He said it will take about a month to conduct all these interviews and gather data. Tucker said it will be used to encourage smart business practices.