Carbon County Economic Development Director Tami Ursenbach knows she has big shoes to fill. She welcomes the challenge and feels that she has found a home. Ursenbach said in a recent interview that as soon as she arrived, she felt as if she were home.
This is a compliment from a woman who has traveled far and wide and lived in many areas of the country and abroad. Ursenbach faces the challenge of keeping the county growing economically, while retaining the charm and lifestyle that gives Carbon County its identity.
In a recent speech to the Carbon County Chamber of Commerce, she spoke of looking ahead and building on diversity to improve the economic base of the area. She also stressed that she is not abandoning the roots of what made this area great, which is the energy industry, including coal.
There are several projects moving forth that were put in motion by former economic developer Delynn Fielding that look to blossom into reality soon. Ursenbach also said that she is working closely with BEAR (Business Expansion and Retention) on another big project that she is hoping to be able to release details on shortly.
Ursenbach’s focus is to strengthen the industries that have been the bread and butter of the economy while adding and diversifying to soften the boom and bust cycles that follow the extraction industry.
One thing Ursenbach is doing, is learning as much about the history of the area as possible. She feels it is good to remember who we are and where we can go. She would like to focus on marketing to bring in the past coal and railroad history. She feels that the companies looking to expand into the area need to understand the past to be a good fit locally.
Water concerns will always define which industries can come into the area. Ursenbach is making sure she is searching for businesses that will not require large water usage.
One of the biggest assets that the community has is its people. Their willingness and support are welcoming to newcomers. There is a strong community with governmental support for new ideas. With USU Eastern, Castleview Hospital, the rail line, two industrial areas and great recreational opportunities, the county has much to offer to entice industry to the area.
One drawback Ursenbach has encountered, is a lack of available buildings ready for companies. She is searching in the business and real estate arenas, so as to make an on-hand list when an opportunity arises, to woo a new customer to the county.
Ursenbach has raised six children and knows what it is like to struggle. She envisions an area where there are enough well-paying jobs and opportunities that children raised here will remain or come back after leaving to pursue an education. Ursenbach also understands that to make the area a good place for college students, there needs to be a base of lower paying jobs they can take while going to school. A good balance and range of opportunities will give the county economic stability and a good quality of life for years to come.
Ursenbach’s office is located in the Carbon County Planning and Zoning building, 65 South 100 East in Price. She can also be reach at (435) 636-3295.