Los Fresnos EDC Hires Company to Promote City

Jose Resendez and Jasson Gonzales, with Lone Star Print of Harlingen, give the final touches to a  new sign installed along Texas Highway 100. The sign is part of a new campaign to promote the city.

Jose Resendez and Jasson Gonzales, with Lone Star Print of Harlingen, give the final touches to a new sign installed along Texas Highway 100. The sign is part of a new campaign to promote the city.

by Tony Vindell/LFN

The wave of retailers that arrived in Los Fresnos in the early 2010s could happened again thanks to the efforts of the Community Development Corporation.

The CDC board of directors have voted to hire the same company that helped the city lure about a half dozen businesses that relocated to the city such as McDonald’s, Subway, Little Ceasar’s Pizza and Walmart, among others.

The board of directors took the action during Monday’s March 2 meeting to bring The Retail Coach after they heard a presentation from City Manager Mark Milum about hiring a company to recruit commercial and retailer businesses to Los Fresnos.

He said he met with Desi Martinez, the CDC liaison, to review proposals submitted by five companies interested in the project.

“They were all very good and each had its own qualities over the other ones,” Milum said. “We chose The Retail Coach.”

Based in Tupelo, Miss., the national consulting, market research and development firm has been around for more than 25 years.

CDC hired the company back in 2010 under a $30,000 contract for a year. This time the company submitted a proposal for $15,000.

The board voted to hire the company after Ramiro Garza, another consultant, pitched his experience in economic development. He submitted a proposal calling for $25,000 for a six-month contract.

Board member Donald Henderson wanted to know how is CDC going to track down the work of the economic advisor on a monthly basis.

Enrique Juarez, the board president, posed a more specific question.

“Are we going to pay for someone who will actually go to work,” he said, “or for a dog and pony show job?”

Interviewed after the meeting, Juarez said he is familiar with The Retail Coach and is glad to bring the company back on board.

Luring new businesses to come to Los Fresnos is a task, but the availability of land and developable properties is a concern.

According to locally elected officials, some property owners have put themselves way above the market making potential investors look elsewhere, they said.

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