Business leaders and local politicians hope a new campaign will bolster growth and development in St. Joseph County.
The chamber of commerce kicked off its Grow SJC Capital Campaign today and invited local leaders to take part.
It's a four-year economic development initiative that they say will create jobs and boost the countywide economy.
The effort has already raised $1.7 million from local businesses.
Organizers stressed the importance of a partnership between business, local government and the surrounding communities.
"Our competition isn't ourselves,” St. Joe County Chamber of Commerce President Jeff Rea said. “It isn't South Bend competing against Mishawaka or one economic development organization competing against another. It's us against the rest of the world, there are 8,000 other communities that want the very same jobs and capital investment that we want. And if we don't have our act together as a local community, we won't get one of them."
The group hopes the investments from local business leaders will lead to measurable success over the next four to five years and encourage others to bring more business to St. Joseph County.