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The Ellis County Coalition is your partner in business success.  Whether you are starting a new business, expanding an existing business, adding to your workforce, need to find financing, or just don’t know where to start on a problem, the Ellis County Coalition is here to assist.

Give us a call to find out how we can assist you in your business success.

Welcome to the Ellis County Coalition For Economic Development Online

Hays, America is a university community of 20,000 people located half way between Kansas City and Denver on Interstate 70. We are the regional hub of Northwest Kansas for retail, education, medical service, entertainment, and recreation. Ellis County annually has one of the top retail pull factors in the state.

Our downtown is being revitalized with unique shops and entertainment and the north side of town is expanding with additional retail offerings. We have a very diversified mix of businesses in the area although agriculture and oil are still major parts of the regional economy. The Hays Regional Airport offers four commercial flights each day to Denver. And, according to recent rankings by Progressive Farmer, E-Podunk, and BizJournal; Hays, America has a great quality of life. We happen to agree. Ellis County is also the home of two bedroom communities Ellis and Victoria.

The Best Cities in Kansas for Young Families


by Mike Anderson on October 20, 2013

Families choose a place to settle down that offers opportunities in the job market and a good education for their kids. With that in mind, we asked the following questions as we analyzed cities and towns across Kansas to identify the best for young families:

  1. Does the city have good public schools? We measured schools’ academic performance with ratings from GreatSchools. This non-profit compares a given school’s standardized test scores to the state average to obtain a rating on a 1 to 10 scale (10 representing the highest score). Higher ratings led to a higher overall score.
  2. Can you afford to live there? We looked at both median home values in each city and ongoing monthly home costs, including mortgage payments, real estate taxes, insurance costs, utilities, fuel and other bills. Lower costs led to a higher overall score.
  3. Is the city growing and prospering? We assessed a city’s economy by looking at median household income and income growth over the last decade. Higher income and greater growth led to a higher overall score.

The Top 10 are:

1. Andover

2. Hays

Hays is the seat of Ellis County and the largest city in northwestern Kansas, with a population of 20,000. The city is also the retail, education, entertainment and medical center of the region, with Fort Hays State University and a large regional hospital. Unemployment here is extremely low, too, at 3.4 percent.

3. Spring Hill

4. Gardner

5. Mulvane

6. De Soto

7. Eudora 

8. Overland Park

9. Leawood

10. Abilene 


For more information and the complete article  -

Ellis County Second Least-Stressed Economy In Nation


The nation's economic stress fell to a two-year low in April, thanks to the strongest private-sector hiring in five years and a dip in bankruptcy filings, according to The Associated Press' monthly analysis.

And Ellis County again fared well, ranking as the second least-stressed county economy in the nation.

The improved picture for jobs and bankruptcy filings offset a slight rise in foreclosures.

The easing of stress was felt most in Midwestern and mid-Atlantic states. But conditions brightened throughout the country: More than 90 percent of the nation's 3,141 counties were better off in April than in March.

Counties with heavy concentrations of workers in farming, retail and tourism benefited in particular. By contrast, counties with many workers in education and mining suffered the sharpest increases in stress.

The AP's Stress index calculates a score from 1 to 100 based on unemployment, foreclosure and bankruptcy rates. A higher score signifies more economic stress. Under a rough rule of thumb, a county is considered stressed when its score exceeds 11. By that standard, about a quarter of the counties were stressed in April, down from about a third in March.

The average county's Stress score was 9.8, the lowest since April 2009's score of 9.7. It was 10.5 in March and 11 in February. A year earlier, it was 10.5.

Nevada had the highest level of stress in April with a score of 19.36. Next were California (15.57), Florida (14.17), Arizona (13.78) and Georgia (13.38).

As it's been since the recession began in 2007, North Dakota was the least-stressed state, with a score of 3.88. It was followed by Nebraska (5.27), South Dakota (5.58), New Hampshire (6.38) and Vermont (6.39).

The nation's stress may have headed back up in May. A range of economic data showed the economy slowing last month, in part because of high gas prices. Consumers who have had to pay more for gas have had less money to spend on other goods and services -- from furniture and appliances to restaurants and vacations.

On Friday, the government said the economy added a scant 54,000 jobs in May, the poorest showing in eight months. And the unemployment rate edged up from 9 percent to 9.1 percent. The question is whether the weakness will be a temporary setback, as was a similar economic slowdown last year, or something more chronic.

"We won't know for a few months," said Sal Guatieri, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets. "A lot will depend on whether gasoline prices moderate."

Guatieri has downgraded his forecast for growth for 2011 to a modest 2.5 percent. That's weaker than last year's 2.9 percent increase, and it's below the 3.2 percent Guatieri was forecasting before gasoline surged to near $4 a gallon.

"It took a big bite out of people's pocket books and their psyche," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics. "I think we will get back on track as the summer and fall progress, but that assumes that gasoline prices don't head higher."

Since peaking at $3.98 a gallon on May 6, gasoline has fallen by about 20 cents to a nationwide average of $3.77 a gallon, according to AAA's daily fuel gauge.

The nation's most-stressed counties with populations of at least 25,000 were Imperial County, Calif. (stress score: 31.33); Yuma County, Ariz., (27.22); Lyon County, Nev. (25.93); Sutter County, Calif. (24.86); and Merced County, Calif. (24.23).

The least stressed were Ward County, N.D. (3.25); Ellis County, Kan. (3.55); Burleigh County, N.D. (3.55); Buffalo County, Neb. (3.94); and Arlington County, Va. (4.04).

Kansas ranked 10th on Forbes magazine’s “Best States for Business”

Kansas named top 10 ‘Pro-Business State’ by Pollina Corporate

Posted on: August 23, 2012

Pollina Corporate Real Estate Inc. announced that Kansas has been named a top 10 “Pro-Business State” for 2012. The annual ranking is compiled by Pollina, a global real estate brokerage and consulting firm, and the American Economic Development Institute. The ranking is based on 32 factors controlled by state government, including taxes, human resources, education, right-to-work legislation, energy costs, infrastructure spending, workers compensation laws, economic incentive programs and state economic development efforts.

“It is nice to receive this recognition as one of the top states for business,” said Kansas Commerce Secretary Pat George. “We have worked diligently over the past 18 months to create an environment that will encourage business expansion and job growth in our state.”

The top 10 states for 2012 are: 1. Utah; 2. Virginia; 3. Wyoming; 4. North Dakota; 5. Indiana; 6. Nebraska; 7. South Dakota; 8. Kansas; 9. Missouri; and 10. Oklahoma.

George cited the enactment of major tax reform that eliminated most non-wage income on small businesses and lowered tax rates for individual Kansans as a major boost to the state’s efforts to expand the economy and add jobs.

“Kansas has gone from one of the highest taxed states in the region to one of the lowest,” George said. “The elimination of taxes on non-wage income is going to really help the 191,000 small businesses in Kansas grow. That’s what we need to get our economy growing.”

Brent Pollina, vice president of Pollina Corporate Real Estate and co-author of the ranking, said that Kansas has proved why it has a reputation for understanding the needs of business. In 2004, Kansas was ranked No. 23 in the survey.

“[Kansas’] consistent approach to creating a pro-business environment has paid off because the state has continuously adapted and changed to fit the needs of business, refusing to sit back and rely on past success,” Pollina said. Pollina also praised the state’s economic development tools as an asset in recruiting companies.

Since January 2011, there have been almost 21,000 jobs created, almost 4,000 jobs retained and $2.8 billion in capital investment in the state, according to Department data.

In addition to the recognition by Pollina, Area Development magazine recently gave a Silver Shovel Award to Kansas. The award recognizes state economic development agencies that drive significant job creation. Forbes’ also ranked Kansas 12th in the publication’s most recent “Best States for Business” report.


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Hays, Kansas 67601

Contact Us

Ellis County Coalition for
Economic Development
Hays Has

2700 Vine Street
Hays, Kansas 67601
Phone: 785-628-3102

Aaron White / ECC Director

Ernee Sly / HHJ Manager