The Community and Economic Development Department works to leverage the City's resources, community partnerships and in-house expertise to drive economic growth and improve life for residents in Tacoma.
Community and Economic Development: Strategic Framework and Action Plan
Economic Development Services Division
This Division assists in the development of a vibrant downtown; business attraction, retention and expansion in the industrial district, Tacoma Mall and business districts through business support services and coordination on planning and infrastructure projects. It also provides expansion, retention and attraction services for large and small employers through outreach and contracts with partner organizations, conducts research and provides targeted customer lists for Tacoma’s small business community, supports expansion of international trade activities, and acts as an internal City ombudsman on behalf of external customers. Several programs also target entrepreneurship development.
This Division provides down payment assistance to income-eligible homebuyers in targeted areas of the city, provides housing repair and rehabilitation assistance to low-income seniors and families, and persons with disabilities. It also provides funding to nonprofit housing organizations for improving existing housing and increasing affordable housing units in Tacoma. The Multifamily Property Tax Exemption program, providing tax incentives for property owners that invest in multifamily housing in the downtown or Mixed Use Centers, is administered by this office.
This office provides support to the Tacoma Arts Commission to develop and implement policies and programs per the Tacoma Municipal Code. It also manages several key programs, including public art funding for artists and arts organizations, Art at Work Month and Tacoma Murals Project programs.
Geographic Information Systems and Data Analysis
This office provides complex spatial analysis for decision-makers, including reports and maps in support of policy discussions.
Local Employment and Apprenticeship Training Program
This office provides residents of Tacoma, particularly those from the Community Empowerment Zone, with the training and support services necessary to complete apprenticeship requirements which lead to family-wage jobs in the building and construction trades. It assists in the development of skilled workers by leveraging workforce development resources that provide quality outreach, recruitment and training services, and it provides contract compliance services to General Government and Tacoma Public Utilities.
Office for Small Business Enterprise (formerly Historically Underutilized Businesses)
The Office for Small Business Enterprise Program (formerly HUB) is a service provided by the City to increase employment opportunities for small business contractors and individuals seeking to increase their skills through training and apprenticeship on City projects. Historically, SBE provides not only contracting opportunities for City Public Works projects, but also helpful resources in mentoring and business management.