Tuesday afternoon, the Muskogee City-County Port Authority and the Greater Muskogee Area Chamber of Commerce announced that a new task force has been created to strategically address how the community moves from disaster response to economic recovery.
The program, called ‘Muskogee Forward’, isn’t a short-term plan, but is expected to be a 12-month effort focusing on restoring the local economy.
“Muskogee has experienced more than its fair share of disasters, but this COVID-19 pandemic has been unlike anything any of us have ever seen,” said Marie Synar, Director of the Muskogee City-County Port Authority. “Just as with any disaster, there comes a time when you roll your sleeves up, pick up the pieces and you begin again.”
Muskogee Forward is not meant to take place of the Joint City-County COVID-19 Task Force and will not be making any recommendations on Muskogee’s re-opening strategy. “Our priority is to do everything we can to help our businesses and citizens recover from this crisis, and to take action that will enable our economy to return stronger than before.” Synar said.
The creation of task force comes at a time when not only private businesses, but city employers across the country are also facing job cuts and loss of business.
The newly formed Task Force has established a series of objectives to include:
- Assess and forecast the economic impact of COVID-19 within the city and county.
- Monitor the economic health of employers within the city and county.
- Provide communication and technical assistance resources to businesses.
- Develop a strategy to stimulate the economy within key sectors.
- Develop a strategy to assist unemployed and displaced workers.
- Identify additional services needed to help businesses, individuals and families recover.
- Host industry roundtable discussions to incorporate input/feedback from businesses.
There will be opportunities for businesses and community members to come together around creative ways to rebuild and recover in the near and long term.
The task force is asking for the local business community to provide insight as to how COVID-19 has impacted their business by participating in a survey. The survey can be found here. Deadline for responses are Wednesday, May 20th.
The best way to stay informed on the Economic Recovery Task Force is to visit the Muskogee Forward website at www.muskogeeforward.com.