Small businesses thrive across America, but some towns are just perfect for a growing business. Topmanagementdegrees.com looked at all the cities in America with between 100,000 and 250,000 residents and ranked them on just how small business friendly they can be. College Station checked in at No. 15 on this list.
May 18, 2018
AUSTIN ⎯ The Texas economy added 39,600 seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs in April, which marked 22 consecutive months of employment growth. Over the year, Texas added 332,300 jobs for an annual employment growth rate of 2.7 percent in April. Private sector employers added 37,900 positions over the month. Texas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.1 percent in April, up slightly from 4.0 percent in March.
Midland Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) recorded the month’s lowest unemployment rate among Texas MSAs with a non-seasonally adjusted rate of 2.1 percent, followed by the Amarillo MSA, which had the second lowest with a rate of 2.6 percent. The College Station-Bryan MSA recorded the third lowest rate of 2.7 percent for April.
“Texas employers continue to boost the impressive Texas economy by adding 39,600 jobs in April and 332,300 jobs over the year,” said TWC Chairman Andres Alcantar. “Our state’s ongoing trajectory of success is linked to the innovation and competitiveness of employers in a range of industries providing workers more opportunities to demonstrate their world-class skills.”
The Manufacturing Industry recorded the largest private-industry employment gain over the month with 8,600 jobs added. Professional and Business Services employment grew by 7,500 jobs in April, followed by Education and Health Services with 6,200 jobs.
“Texas employers added 327,500 jobs over the past year, making our state’s annual private-sector employment growth 3.2 percent for April, up from 2.9 percent in March,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Employers Ruth R. Hughs. “It’s no surprise that CEOs ranked the Lone Star State as the Best State for Business for the 14th consecutive year in a row. These numbers are a testament to the perseverance and resilience of our Texas employers and the diversity of our Texas economy.”
“The Texas labor force is now approaching 14 million and has continued to provide employers with the skills and expertise needed to keep the Texas economy growing,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez. “TWC and the 28 local workforce development boards are committed to connecting Texas workers with available jobs.”
Audio downloads with comments from Commissioner Hughs on the latest labor market data are available on the TWC website press release page. Employment estimates released by TWC are produced in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. All estimates are subject to revision. To access this and more employment data, visit tracer2.com.
COLLEGE STATION (KBTX) – Each year, dozens of top executives from biopharmaceutical companies around the world come together for BioPhorum. The annual conference allows them to discuss their best practices in producing vaccines, gene therapies, allergenics and more.
Read more on KBTX.com: Top biopharmaceutical executives visit the Brazos Valley
NEW YORK, May 8, 2018 — Moody’s Investors Service upgrades to Aa1 from Aa2 the City of College Station’s
issuer rating and the rating on $308.7 million in previously issued general obligation limited tax debt. At the
same time, Moody’s assigns an Aa1 rating to the city’s $36.9 million Certificates of Obligation, Series 2018.
The upgrade to the Aa1 rating reflects the city’s sizeable and growing tax base anchored by Texas A&M
University System’s (Aaa stable) flagship campus, as well as steady and favorable operating performance that
continues to support healthy reserves. Although the city may draw on fund balance in the current year, the
spending is nonrecurring and will leave reserves at a still solid level consistent with Aa1 peers. Finally, the
rating further considers manageable debt and pension burdens and regular support from the city’s strong utility
The Aa1 limited tax rating is the same as the Moody’s issuer rating. Although the GOLT bonds are not a full
faith and credit pledge, the city has substantial margin under statutory tax rate limitations.
Moody’s does not generally assign outlooks to local governments with this amount of debt.
FACTORS THAT COULD LEAD TO AN UPGRADE
– Continued strong economic growth that moderates debt and pension burdens with tax base and revenue
– Increased reserve position
FACTORS THAT COULD LEAD TO A DOWNGRADE
– Reduction in reserves to a level inconsistent with rating peers
– Economic contraction resulting in tax base loss
– Material growth in the city’s debt or pension burdens
The certificates are secured by a direct and continuing annual ad valorem tax, levied on all taxable property
within the limits prescribed by law, and a subordinate lien and pledge of $1,000 of net surplus revenues of the
city’s utility system.
USE OF PROCEEDS
Proceeds from the sale will finance various citywide projects including street and transportation improvements,
public parks improvements, utility system improvements, land for a new fire station, and design of a new city
The City of College Station is located in Brazos County, in the middle of a triangle bounded by Dallas (A1
stable)/Fort Worth (Aa3 negative), Houston (Aa3 stable) and San Antonio (Aaa stable)/Austin (Aaa stable). The
current estimated population is 117,841.
The principal methodology used in these ratings was US Local Government General Obligation Debt published
in December 2016. Please see the Rating Methodologies page on moodys.com for a copy of this
College Station Utilities has earned a Reliable Public Power Provider (RP3) Diamond designation from the American Public Power Association for providing reliable and safe electric service. The designations were presented Monday in Raleigh, N.C.
In the program’s 13-year history, CSU and Denton Municipal Electric have received five RP3 designations, the most among Texas utilities. The designation lasts for three years and recognizes public power utilities that demonstrate proficiency in reliability, safety, workforce development, and system improvement. Criteria include sound business practices and a utility-wide commitment to the safe and reliable delivery of electricity.
The APPA reserves the Diamond designation for utilities that meet at least 98 percent of the program’s criteria. Other levels are Platinum (90-97 percent) and Gold (80-89 percent). College Station Utilities joins more than 92 public power utilities nationwide that have the RP3 Diamond designation, including only four in Texas. The others are Austin Energy, Brownsville Public Utilities Board, and Bryan Texas Utilities.
“This is a great honor,” CSU Electric Director Timothy Crabb said. “We take a lot of pride in the work we do to power our community. We’re very happy to get this recognition for our initiative and hard work.”
The APPA represents more than 2,000 not-for-profit, community- and state-owned electric utilities.
By , Economic Development Manager
On Monday, I received an email asking a simple question: Why has the City of College Station not reached out to Waffle House or made plans to build one in our community?
Since Waffle House is the mecca of waffle aficionados across much of America, the question is reasonable — and it’s one we hear a lot.
So why don’t we have a Waffle House?
Restaurants such as Waffle House are planned and built by private businesses. We proactively recruit many companies, including restaurants, and we’ve pursued Waffle House for several years. Unfortunately, its management has repeatedly said it has no plans to expand to College Station anytime soon.
The role of the city’s Economic Development department is to identify commercially zoned property with good visibility and access that companies such as Waffle House would find attractive. We then help that business navigate our development and permitting processes.
I’m a big fan of waffles and would love to see a Waffle House in College Station. If you have an influential contact who could change the company’s decision and bring a location here, you’d be a local hero.
Get to work!
Photo Copyright: dehooks/123RF Stock Photo
After 10 years of owning and operating The Republic Steakhouse in College Station, executive chef Wade Barkman is finally building his own restaurants – an updated Republic, plus a brand-new concept that shares a common slab – from the ground up.
In this podcast with Public Communications Director Jay Socol, Wade talks about life leading up to this point, and what people can expect with these new properties.
Total run time: 32:03
- 00:00 – Show open.
- 01:00 – PART ONE: Wade starts from the beginning, including how he found Texas A&M, moved on to culinary school, then California, Vegas (thank you, Aggie Network) and finally back to CS in 2006.
- 08:20 – Wade finds his restaurant location — home to three or four previous ones. (Can you name them?)
- 11:42 – The highs and lows of Chimney Hill: Why did Wade stay?
- 14:30 – How he found a concept — The Republic — that the town needed, even if he wasn’t a steakhouse guy.
- 17:48 – Why dozens of restaurants have come and gone in 10 years, but The Republic has survived. “I would not wish this business on anyone.”
- 19:47 – PART TWO: The Republic is being recreated + Primrose Path, a “gastro-pub wine bar.”
- 21:13 – The differences between the old Republic and the new one.
- 24:14 – What is Primrose Path going to be?
- 26:58 – Will you miss the old building, or take anything with you to the new place?
- 28:07 – How was your development experience with the city of College Station?
- 30:11 – Sometime in fall 2018: Republic will open, with Primrose Path doing so about a month later.
- 30:49 – What’s your guilty pleasure in terms of food?
- 31:49 – Show close.
It’s been a long time since Economic Development Director Natalie Ruiz and Public Communications Director Jay Socol talked rumors versus reality in terms of restaurants, retail, and more. This episode of “Is This a Thing?” covers a lot of ground, including flip-flop scenarios about In-N-Out Burger.
Using examples of Academy and Gander Mountain, Nat also gives great insight into why vacant properties stay empty so long.
Total run time: 44:09
- 00:00 – Show open.
- 02:20 – University Drive: Kinds of businesses interested in University Town Center, its challenges; announcements by fall, then construction.
- 05:45 – Chimney Hill: The Republic Steakhouse and Primrose Path; drive-thru Starbucks looks like a thing; what else has potential; the REAL story about In-N-Out Burger.
- 10:36 – Burger Mojo update.
- 11:50 – Century Square: Review of all the recent openings + what else is coming soon. How sustainable are all these businesses?
- 15:43 – Northgate: Seeing more restaurants and retail interests. Food truck park. Small grocery has to be on the horizon.
- 18:15 – Texas Avenue: Ace Hardware, Red Lion.
- 19:15 – Pappadeaux status.
- 22:05 – Honest talk about Harvey Road.
- 26:15 – Why “available” buildings aren’t always…available. Example: The old Academy building.
- 30:15 – Status of the Gander Mountain building.
- 32:35 – Jones Crossing: Status of H-E-B and more.
- 33:37 – Chef Tai’s Urban Table (I botch the name).
- 34:15 – CapRock and Tower Point: Rx Pizza, Casa do Brasil, Ground Shuttle Transit, The Yard, Bottleneck Wine Bar, offices and more.
- 36:05 – Gringo’s now has a building permit. Walk-On’s moving forward. TaD’s Louisiana Cooking.
- 37:05 – Stella (from the owners of Harvey Washbanger’s).
- 38:13 – New car dealerships.
- 38:40 – Dunkin’ Donuts — anything?
- 41:00 – Big boxes hit pause on new developments in 2017. Now, “the Amazon Effect” has forced brick-and-mortar brands to be creative with new online partnerships.
- 43:51 – Show close.
No one is surprised these days when College Station gets ranked among the nation’s top college towns, as a great place for business, or as one of the best places to live.
The criteria publications and financial websites use to compile those rankings are usually based on data from the past year. The lists are usually divided into population categories, too.
A website called CardRates.com is different. This week it was bold enough to make predictions about what’s ahead by publishing a list of “10 cities Primed for Economic Growth and Opportunity in 2018.” It included cities as small as 5,178 people (Evansville, Wisc.) to as large as 947,897 (Austin).
By now, you’ve probably guessed that College Station made the list. Why else would we be blogging about it? But you may be surprised that we are ranked No. 1.
That’s right. CardRates says College Station’s economy could be as good as it gets in the entire country in 2018. In developing the list, CardRates took factors such as pay, cost of living and unemployment rates into consideration.
Here’s what they had to say about us:
College Station is located roughly equidistant from Houston and Austin. Although the city has seen a population increase of about 25 percent over the last 10 years, College Station, with fewer than 120,000 residents, is large enough to offer city amenities, while still being small enough to maintain that hometown feel.
College Station’s unemployment rate is well below the national average at 2.7 percent, the lowest among the cities on our list, and the median household income has grown more than 80 percent since 2000. The city’s largest employer is Texas A&M University, which has its main campus in College Station, and is nationally recognized as a Land-, Sea-, and Space-Grant Institution.
Here’s the full list:
We already knew we were doing pretty well, but it’s nice – and a bit exciting – to know others feel the same way.
What to expect (spoiler: cool stuff) at this major intersection.