Update to the vision north Iowa strategic plan

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(ABC 6 News) – North Iowa business and community leaders gathered today to talk about some of the biggest issues facing the area.

The annual state of north Iowa report, hosted by the Chamber of Commerce, looked at several key topics including workforce attraction and employee retention.

"These are issues that have taken a hundred years to develop and no community gonna solve them in a year or two you got to have a broad plan and you have to stick to it and adapt it as times change but don’t give up," Dr. Ron Cox, Iowa State University said.

Housing, retaining people in the community, and making the community more attractive for people and families to move to were also discussed.

"We’re trying to break down those barriers and make it easier for people to come so we are really trying to partner with our businesses and employers to do that," Chad Schreck, North Iowa Corridor EDC said.

"I think our best shot at attracting talent to our area is to look for people who have a tie to this region," Robin Anderson, Mason City Chamber of Commerce said.

Community leaders said the main message they want to get out is that COVID isn’t the main driver of these issues and that many communities across the country are facing the same thing.