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Lee County economic leaders selected to Iowa economic recovery board

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Dana Millard and Dennis Fraise of Lee County Economic Development Group have been tapped to join governor Kim Reynold's economic recovery advisory board.

Local businesses said they'll take all the help they can get.

"A really good example of this is that we've been dead all day," 10th Street Station diner co-owner David Taylor said.

He said uncertainty over the future has been the worst part.

"Normally we're getting phone calls for pickup and you know people are starting to come in and now they're back out again," Taylor said.

Dana Millard said it's something they'll be working on.

"Part of being on the board is to get those great minds and different perspectives across the state so that we can come together collaborate on creating different scenarios in case those other scenarios happen," she said.

Specifically tasked with reinvigorating the state's workforce, Millard said the group has its work cut out for them.

"Before COVID-19 there were record lows in unemployment so there are jobs out there, we just need to reassess," she said.

Taylor said more funding could be an answer.

"The initial support that we were getting from the state and federal government to help with payroll and help keep our businesses open has been spent," he said. "That's done."

Millard said they'll be using a multi-pronged approach.

"We're looking at different training opportunities that someone might need to take in order to qualify for those higher level jobs," she said.

The board is divided into three subcommittees, each dealing with a key part of restoring the economy such as recruiting and retention, labor participation, workforce training.

Millard says the board will meet every two weeks.

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Blake Sammann

Blake Sammann is a reporter and weekend anchor at WGEM News.

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