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The City of Bay City has been recognized for its successes and efforts in contributing to Michigan’s entrepreneurial growth and economic development in the annual eCities study conducted by researchers at iLabs, University of Michigan-Dearborn’s Center for Innovation Research. Bay City was honored as a four star community along with 183 other communities across the state.“We’re honored and pleased to see this recognition of our collective efforts to make Bay City a greater regional economic center within Michigan,” said Steve King, the City’s Community Development Director. “There’s a tremendous amount of work to do at the City and with our partners in creating and facilitating economic development success, but the positive feedback from the eCities study at the University of Michigan – Dearborn reinforces that we’re building well for the future.” The eCities study analyzed publicly available data from 277 communities from 54 counties in Michigan. Researchers focused on the five-year changes in property values, community assets and tax rates, which can demonstrate the growth, investments and cost of doing business within the community. For example, over the five-year period, these communities increased their capital assets by an average of 2 percent per year by purchasing public safety equipment and improving sidewalks and other infrastructure.“While accounting for only about 15 percent of the cities and townships in Michigan, the 277 communities analyzed are home to nearly 70 percent of the population and 85 percent of the state’s commercial property,” Davis said. “By analyzing these high-performing communities, our goal is to showcase what cities and townships are doing to spur growth and how we can continue to support their efforts in developing business and encouraging entrepreneurs.”The City of Bay City’s economic development staff engage in a variety of efforts to create new economic development projects and add value to existing community businesses and wealth creators. The City actively partners with Bay Future, Inc., Bay County’s economic development organization, to promote available strategic development sites and retain the community’s largest employers. In addition, the City has incentivized several prominent commercial construction projects in the past 12 months to create or retain hundreds of jobs, with all projects expected to provide decades of lasting benefit to the community. The City of Bay City will be recognized Tuesday, Nov. 14, during the eCities Panel Discussion, which will discuss how talent, business policy and access to capital have impacted community growth in Michigan. The panel, moderated by DBusiness Magazine and DBusiness Daily News editor R.J. King, will feature Beth Ardisana, CEO, ASG Renaissance; Antonio Luck, managing director, Endeavor Detroit; Anthony Tomczak, chief procurement officer, DTE Energy; and Amelia Zamir, co-founder and principal of acquisitions, Method Development. The event is free, but registration through the UM-Dearborn College of Business website (umdearborn.edu/cob) is required.The annual eCities research project, which began in 2007, previously used data supplied by the participants. This year’s shift to reviewing publicly available data was implemented to simplify the process for communities.