Evansville looks to bring jobs back to low income neighborhoods

Evansville Promise to Support Business
Evansville Promise to Support Business
Evansville Promise to Support Business
Evansville Promise to Support Business

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - The city of Evansville is looking to bring jobs back to low-income neighborhoods throughout the city.

In 2016, areas of Evansville were designated as "Promise Zones". This means that the city can file for federal grants to support these areas.

The city chose to use a portion of this money to support small businesses within the city.

"We're trying to make these funds available and publicize knowledge about them through our promise zones," said Kelley Coures.

Coures is a member of the Department of Metropolitan Development. He said the city is hosting events in different locations to show small business owners and entrepreneurs that these areas can provide an opportunity to start and grow their business.

"There are resources available to them if they want to locate their business or higher people that live within that promise zone boundary," Coures continued.

One of the areas Coures and his colleagues are focusing on is on the east side of Evansville.

"Generally people don't think of the east side as being an area that needs economic assistance," said Coures, but that isn't completely true.

He says there is a section of the east side, particularly in the second ward, that does have a number of low-income families and stores that are sitting empty. But that provides an opportunity for eager business owners.

Second Ward City Councilwoman Missy Mosby says the area is a perfect place to find employees.

"There are some people there that need jobs and we want to be able to give them that opportunity to be able to work," Mosby said.

Mosby says there a few challenges that face the people of the second ward, namely transportation.

"A lot of the people in that area may not have the transportation," says Mosby. "So if you can locate or relocate a business within our second ward, within the promise zone area, then they could actually walk or ride their bike."

Evansville Promise will host its second stop on the "Promise to Listen Business Tour" on February 28. The event will be held at Fairlawn United Methodist Church from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

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