Economic Recovery and Vitality Plan Definitions

Economic Recovery and Vitality Plan Definitions

This page was developed to bring awareness to the meaning of the terminology used in the Speak Up Fayetteville Questionnaire for the Economic Vitality and Recovery Plan. If there is a concept or phrase within the questionnaire that you do not understand, which is not covered on this page, please contact the Department of Economic Vitality. 

Economic Vitality:

The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) defines economic development as "a program, group of policies, or activity that seeks to improve the economic well-being and quality of life for a community by creating and retaining jobs that facilitate growth and provide a stable tax base."  In Fayetteville, the traditional definition does not fully represent the focuses and efforts of the Department of Economic Vitality. The Department of Economic Vitality is committed to fostering sustainable and equitable economic development throughout the City of Fayetteville. As the City’s primary economic development arm, the Department of Economic Vitality serves as a liaison from the City to the contracted entities providing economic development services, as well as the business community.

Supportive Services:

In the area of economic and workforce development, supportive services is a term used by the Department of Labor. Supportive services provide residents with key assistance, beyond career and job skill training, that are necessary to achieve success. This can include transportation, child care, mental and physical healthcare services, and housing assistance. These services are critical and necessary if a resident who faces barriers is going to be successful in programs such as job skill training. 

Percent for the Arts:

Percent for the arts is a policy that applies to municipal capital improvement projects where a determined percentage of the total project budget is set aside for public art. These policies also address how the money is to be spent on the acquisition and commissioning of public works of art. You can learn more about percent for the arts by visiting the Americans for the Arts website.

Growth Concept Oriented Development and Growth Nodes: 

Growth Concept Oriented Development is the recognition and practice of creating diverse, efficient, and well-connected communities that are affordable and rich in local employment, access to transportation, services, and culture city-wide. This shines a light on the importance of where not only new jobs should be located, but also housing and recreational opportunities. Through entrepreneurship, infrastructure, policy, and private development, unique walkable areas can be built throughout the community, not just downtown. A growth node is one of the tiered centers annotated on the growth concept map. 

Workforce Housing or Middle Income Housing:

While there is no universal definition for this term, the Department of Economic Vitality's intent behind this phrase is "housing that members of the workforce, including entrepreneurs, and members of the creative economy, can afford." It is also sometimes called "middle-income" housing. This housing type targets rental and purchase opportunities for those who earn too much to qualify for housing assistance vouchers, yet cannot afford typical market rates in Fayetteville. While the U.S. Department of Urban Development provides assistance for families making up to 50% of a community's median income, workforce housing aims to provide housing for households making between 80 and 120% of a community's median income (AMI). The need for workforce housing does not diminish the continued need for more housing to serve residents and families making up to 50% AMI. 


As an industry, the manufacturing sector of today has evolved a great deal over the past several decades. This industry can be defined as "any industry that makes products from raw materials by the use of manual labor or machinery" (Britannica, 2021). Manufacturing is responsible for numerous jobs in Fayetteville (3,500- City of Fayetteville Business License Data) and Washington County. In Washington County, the Manufacturing sector is currently home to over 14,700 jobs and is projected to rise to 16,238 by 2031 (EMSI Q2 2021 Data Set). Currently, the average wage of the existing manufacturing jobs in Washington County is $46,598 (or $22.40 an hour) (Ibid.). 


Reskilling is the process of learning new skills so you can obtain a different job within your current career field or outside of it. As the economy continues to adapt to advancements in technologies and new ways of engaging in business, reskilling is a strategy that aims to ensure certain members of the workforce are not left behind. 

Department of Labor Registered Apprenticeship Programs:

"Apprenticeship programs combine paid on-the-job training with classroom instruction to prepare workers for highly skilled careers. Workers benefit from apprenticeship by receiving a skills-based education that prepares them for good-paying jobs. Apprenticeship programs help employers recruit, build, and retain a highly skilled workforce." ( Registered apprenticeships offer accredited training, credentials that are recognized nationally, and other benefits such as pay increases as skills are obtained. 

Social and Economic Mobility:

Social mobility is the movement (either up or down) of residents and their families through a social system. This could be through their job or employment opportunities and relates to "class" structures in society. Economic mobility is often tethered to this closely, which can be defined as a resident or family's ability to raise or reduce their income. Social and economic mobility are connected closely to barriers residents may face (barriers are things such as being formerly incarcerated, experiencing poverty, lack of access to transit or affordable housing or childcare, and a magnitude of other challenges. Addressing these challenges is a critical component of economic equity. The Department of Labor also has a list of barriers that are used to determine eligibility for Federal job skill training programs such as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. 

Trade, Technical, and Vocational Training:

These terms are often used to describe job skill training programs that provide credentialed skills outside of a four-year college degree program. The majority of these programs offer high-wage employment opportunities with the opportunity for advancement or entrepreneurship. Examples include but are not limited to: carpentry, plumbing, welding, commercial truck driving, robotics, masonry, computer coding, and many more.