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Montana Framework for Economic Development

A Framework for Economic Development:
Simple PDF version
(PDF - 265 KB)

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Framework in Sections:
Overview of the Framework (PDF)

Principle 1 (PDF)
Principle 2 (PDF)
Principle 3 (PDF)
Principle 4 (PDF)
Principle 5 (PDF)
Appendix (PDF)

Entire Framework:
Printable (PDF) Version
(PDF - 4.9 MB)

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Montana Framework for Economic Development

Governor's Office of Economic Opportunity:
Governor Judy Martz


A Vision for Economic Prosperity

The State of Montana will work with the private sector and local communities to facilitate growth and diversity in our state's economy and to enhance the quality of life for all our citizens. Montana will become a leader in creating knowledge-based jobs, utilizing leading edge technology in all industries, and developing a globally competitive business environment.

Guiding Principles for Economic Development

1.  Foster a globally competitive business environment by enhancing the private sector.

2.  Provide the opportunity for all Montana citizens to share economic prosperity and a high quality of life in all regions of the state.

3.  Enable economic development by increasing government responsiveness and efficiency, and by providing a competitive tax structure.

4.  Grow our traditional and existing businesses and industries.

5.  Encourage the startup, expansion and attraction of businesses that provide sustainable economic growth and good paying jobs.

In the 2001 Legislative Session, Governor Judy Martz proposed the formation of a statewide office to coordinate economic development. With legislative endorsement, the Office of Economic Opportunity was created within the Governor's office. Its mission is to guide the state's economic development efforts to create a stronger, more diversified economy in Montana.

The Process

The draft framework for economic development is the culmination of Phase I of a two-phase process. Phase I began with a study of Montana's previous strategic plans, the plans of other cities and states around the country and discussions with many citizens across the state. This document presents a vision and serves as a guide to build a more detailed action plan.

With this completed draft, Phase II in building our strategic plan begins. Over the next several months, we will involve numerous stakeholders, both in and outside state government, to include ideas from across the state.

The Governor will form an economic advisory group comprised of a small number of leaders from throughout the state. This advisory group will provide oversight for further development and implementation of Montana's plan. We will also form a number of small technical groups to recommend specific actions to address the needs of Montana's economy.

Phase II will conclude with a presentation of the finished strategic plan and the implementation of the specific programs to reach those goals. A major theme throughout our effort is accountability. The citizens of Montana will be able to measure the progress of each goal.

Like the draft framework, the final plan will not sit on the shelf. It will undergo continual assessment, refinement and evaluation as we move forward.


This draft is intended to provide a broad framework from which Montana's public sector can contribute to the state's economic vitality in the coming years. The goals and strategies set forth in this document were developed with one comprehensive end result in mind: to support, retain, expand and attract sustainable and environmentally responsible economic activity that makes Montana a better place to live and work.

We begin with an overview of Montana's economy and a discussion of the plan's vision -- a discussion of the philosophy that guides our strategic planning process and describes the role of the public sector in the execution of this plan.

The draft includes five guiding principles that are essential for broad-based economic prosperity in Montana. One or more goals are associated with each guiding principle, and one or more strategies are associated with each goal.

Appendix A identifies the macro-level performance measures which we've identified at this time that will be a portion of the benchmarks used to measure the performance of each goal.

During the next several months, we will work with citizens, Montana businesses, federal, state and local entities, and legislators to develop a strategic economic plan that represents the best ideas to move forward. If Montana is to succeed, we need your ideas and commitment. Please e-mail us your comments.

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