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What is Ripons business climate?
Council aims to find out how to attract more jobs
City leaders are going to explore the Ripon business climate is to determine ways to help bring more concerns into downtown and elsewhere in Ripon. - photo by HIME ROMERO

Jake Park has always been interested in the City of Ripon’s economic plan for the future.

As a newly elected councilman, he was appointed to the Downtown Redevelopment Committee. Park hopes this group – also included are Mayor Dean Uecker, City Engineer Kevin Werner and Planning Director Ken Zuidervaart – will help attract commerce and industry to Ripon.

“But we need to get a better perspective of our business climate,” he said at Tuesday’s Ripon City Council meeting. “For example, what are our needs of the community? Can we attract new businesses? Can we be competitive?”

Park and Uecker are small business owners. He operates Jake’s Coffee, Tea & Sandwiches while Uecker has his Farmers Insurance.

In his campaign, Park supported the idea that the City can still maximize business development while maintaining that family atmosphere.

“Ripon has created a very unique, family oriented identity, which truly sets it apart from any other town in the valley,” he said. “It is important that we identify businesses that will compliment this unique identity.”

Park, who has business degree (Marketing) from Chico State – his masters was in International Affairs from the University of Central Florida – hopes that the first step begins with the Downtown Redevelopment Committee, which is scheduled to meet next week.

“Ideally, you would want an economic development plan,” he said. “But this way, our hope is that we’ll get to know the needs of the community.”

As for big box stores, Park once said it would likely depend on the type of business.

“We have a big box store (Tractor Supply) which has done a tremendous job in completing the culture of Ripon,” he noted.