2016 State of the Region Address Caps Off a ‘Record Breaking Year’

2016 State of the Region Address Caps Off a ‘Record Breaking Year’

The 2016 Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce's State of the Region dinner celebrated the completion of great year in Indiana. The Chamber members met at the Radisson Hotel on March 3rd to hear county-wide updates from five professional speakers. As Lake County IN Economic Alliance President and CEO Karen Lauerman said, “It was a record breaking year.”

The LCEA partners with the Crossroads Chamber to further each other’s mission. “Our goal,” Lauerman said, “is to facilitate economic development. While we embrace our individuality and uniqueness in Lake County, we did not have one resource. [The Economic Alliance] fills that gap. We are everywhere we need to be, when we need to be there.”

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The Crossroads Chamber is comprised of two different cities: Merrillville and Crown Point.

This year, Merrillvile won an award for their Stormwater Program, a water utility ranked number one in the state by FEMA. This is just one of the many ways they are improving the quality of life. In 2015 over one thousand permits were granted to businesses and residents totalling over $20 millio in city improvements.

Councilman Shawn Pettit said, “It’s been a busy year. It’s going to continue to be as more economic development is anticipated for 2017.” He gave the presentation for the Merrillville City Council.

For the Merrillville School System, Assistant Principal Lorri Covaciu, Ed.S, said, “This is a chance for us to partner with local business for rigorous learning opportunities. Merrillville Schools continue to strive for excellence with the help of students and community partners.”

Crown Point Mayor David Uran was happy to report again that crime was down across the board. He said, "The City of Crown Point continues to be the safest in the state. We are going to continue to invest in public safety.”

While the city has put a lot of money into reinforcing the fire department and implementing project Life Save, they have also given back to the citizens by hosting many special events that boost local economy and provide entertainment.

The schools have benefited from the business community. Crown Point and Merrillville students are given internship opportunities and other glimpses into their future careers.

Dr. Teresa Eineman, from the Crown Point School System, said, “This is a very unique partnership. We are growing because we are coming together for our school systems, and we are growing rapidly.”

This year was Merrillville Superintendent Jeff Studebaker’s first State of the Region event with the Crossroads Chamber. “I’m intrigued to see what it’s about and what people have to say. Schools are an economic drive in the community so it is important for us to be here.”

The students themselves are involved with the Chamber meeting. Nine teens from the Leadership Program were invited to witness their community in action. Carly Guvitz said, “It lets you experience the adult world, and what they go through. It’s an eye opening experience.”