AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - When analyzing Amarillo's economy the team of consultants looked at the city's economic position, workforce, education, infrastructure, quality of life, and innovation.
Some of the major concerns from these categories is the labor force has grown less than one percent over the past 5 years, poverty levels are relatively high and while job growth has been constant at 4.6 percent, we trail the rest of Texas and the United States.
Mayor Ginger Nelson was not in office when the survey was conducted but said knowing our biggest weakness will allow her to better understand how to grow out economy.
"You can't just get in the car and hope to arrive at your destination without making a plan and having the information to execute the plan," said Nelson. "This is a key component of that information, and I think will give us a very powerful tool to help us move forward."
The team of consultants also compared Amarillo to cities of similar size and demographics called benchmark cities.
In these comparisons, Amarillo offered the most affordable quality of life, had unemployment rates well below the average and had an economic climate that promotes entrepreneurial activities.
Despite these positive results, when community members and businesses were surveyed, they underestimated Amarillo economic status and often times had an overall negative perception of the city.
"We need to do a better job of communicating, I'm not just talking about AEDC but the city and our large employers, said AEDC President and CEO Barry Albrecht. "That is one shortfall I found right off the bat."
On Monday the AEDC will hold a public meeting from 6:00 to 7:30 at the at the Polk Street United Methodist Church. The meeting will be held in the Wesley Room where they will go into further detail about the report and will take public opinion.
The full economic report will be made available Monday.