Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Columbia 1st Plan to benefit local businesses and residents

The Columbia Borough Community Development Committee is actively considering a new plan to invest in Columbia, which it is calling the "Columbia 1st Project." The stated aims are "To promote economic opportunity, growth, development & jobs" and "To invest in the citizens of Columbia Borough."

The plan is seen as a way to reach out to local businesses to discuss issues and promote business growth within the borough. One goal is to create a directory of Columbia businesses of goods and services to encourage people to buy local. Also under the plan, the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority and the Lancaster County Economic Development Company would assist new and growing businesses in locating in Columbia. To that end, tax breaks would be given to such businesses during the first 10 years.

The plan also includes formation of a Community Revitalization Commission to benefit individual borough property owners through housing programs and low-interest loans for repairs and upgrades. The commission would be funded by interest from the recent sale of the sewer system to LASA and grants.

The Columbia 1st Project would also be promoted through the licensing of "Columbia 1st" merchandise, including hats, shirts, and mugs bearing the tagline "Columbia, PA. Simply the best. It's a Columbia Thing."

The project is due to be discussed at Thursday night's Community Development Committee meeting at 6 p.m. at the borough hall, 308 Locust Street. The meeting is open to the public.

Columbia 1st Project outline


  1. If the leaders in Cola really want to help businesses in the town or bring new ones in they need to make the tax base competitive with the surrounding areas. Otherwise they're wasting there time. They shouldn't be giving away that pot of LASA money to compensate the school & police force which this ultimately is.

  2. Until the locals commit to supporting local businesses they will continue to open and eventually CLOSE.......

  3. No business will make it if they depend on the locals of our existing town. The income of the majority of the residents in this town only allows for the purchase of life's essentials. Our leaders need to make the changes like consolidation to bring residents in who have disposable income. Our existing school district is not where families would choose to send their kids. Our police force & schools make our tax base a major factor when people are choosing where to live in this area. Don't waste those LASA dollars with enticements.

  4. What statistics did you use to make the statement about the income of the majority?
    When I had a store front it was supported greatly by residents on a fixed income.
    Their business was greatly appreciated and helpful.

  5. When you HAD a storefront
    So you don't have it anymore. Your head must be in the sand. There's been more than enough studies done that has shown Columbia's median income level is at the poverty standards. This is not a slight on the residents. It just proves that with incorrect leadership an area becomes a pocket of low income residents. AKA high taxes & lots of rentals. It's not where most want to live but have to.

  6. Mmmm I love the anonymous barbs thrown.
    16 years with a storefront and still in BUSINESS.
    I'd love to have my head in the sand, along the Ocean, vacationing away from negative NELLIES LIKE YOU!!