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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 20,862 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 10 Best Places to Open a Small Business; Hays is #6!


 After 6 long years, the economy is recovering. In November, the National Federation of Independent Businesses reported that its Small Business Optimism Index increased 2.0 points to 98.1, the highest since before the recession in February 2007. As things are looking up, we thought it would be a good time to look at the places where small business is thriving. Using U.S. Census data, we ranked the 10 best places (towns and cities) in America for small businesses. These are the places with positive small business hiring trends, positive small establishment numbers growth, and with high concentrations of fellow small businesses. 

#6 - In Hays, the largest city in northwest Kansas and the home of Fort Hays State University, education and healthcare are the two major industries. Hays achieved 4th on our list for small business job growth, with a 10% increase in employees year over year. With 76.8% of the population over 16 years in the labor force, that job growth is incredibly important. The cost of living is low, and small businesses keep growing to their full potential. 



For the complete story - America's 10 Best Places to Open a Small Business

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  -

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.


Location Map

Fiber Optic


Scalable Broadband for All Needs


Goole Fiber is not the only provider of gigabit broadband service in Kansas.  With speeds up to 10 gigabits or more for commerical applications, the broadband providers in Ellis County, Kansas can meet your high speed internet needs, from big manufacturing and distribution to Main St. retailers and telecommuters:

  • Reliable service to keep your  business moving
  • Affordable service with packages to meet every budget
  • Scaleable service to grow with your business
  • Service and support when you need it

Local providers, teamed with Tier 1 companies, can deliver a suite of telecommunications services throughout Ellis County:

  • Affordable, customized business solution
  • Expandable networks
  • Cloud based solutions
  • Data recovery/data back-up solutions
  • Phone solutions--SIP/VOIP


This quarterly newsletter contains a few articles highlighting topics in the community and region that the Coalition is involved with.


Fly Out. Fly In.

Sports Complex

For one on one assistance
with your job search

888-JOB-HAYS (888-562-4297)
or stop by the local KANSASWORKS office -
332 East 8th Street
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