DevelopAbilene is an “umbrella” brand for the organizations that work together to bring business to the City. It consists of the Development Corporation of Abilene (DCOA) and the five groups that receive funding from the DCOA: Abilene Industrial Foundation (AIF), Downtown Programs, Economic Development Department, Military Affairs Council, and Texas Tech Small Business Development Center.
The Development Corporation of Abilene (DCOA) is committed to creating a healthy economic climate for our community. Through the use of a half-cent sales tax, the Abilene Industrial Foundation (AIF) and Economic Development Department (EDD), which contract to the DCOA, find the best way to strengthen its businesses, build a better economic base, and create jobs for its residents.
The Abilene Industrial Foundation (AIF) is an affiliate of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce, working under contract to the Development Corporation of Abilene. The AIF is responsible for site selection assistance, marketing, and existing business retention/expansion, and is a source of comprehensive information for expanding the relocating business.
In 1982, Abilene became the first city in Texas to create a downtown reinvestment zone as allowed by the state legislature. Through Downtown Programs, the governing board of this zone (commonly referred to as Tax Increment Financing – TIF) has distributed more than $10.4 million to a wide range of projects such as building rehabilitation, business expansion, and beautification projects.
The City of Abilene’s Department of Economic Development (EDD) provides staff support to the DCOA Board of Directors, negotiates incentives with expanding Abilene businesses and prospective businesses, and monitors contracts between the DCOA and businesses for compliance. The EDD accomplishes its mission through a comprehensive economic development program and through a contractual relationship with the DCOA.
The Military Affairs Committee (MAC) is part of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce. The mission is to maintain and expand the military presence in our community, as well as continue the strong relationship with our military community. MAC is instrumental in ensuring Dyess Air Force Base remains a premier large aircraft installation, explores opportunities to expand missions and modernize base infrastructure, and supports our more than 5,000 military and civilian employees, as well as their 8,000 family members and retirees.
The Texas Tech Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Abilene provides business counseling, technical assistance, training workshops, and business plan development for small businesses. We strive to promote growth, expansion, innovation, increased productivity, and improved management for small business.