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County completes economic development department hiring

LAWRENCEVILLE - A former state business recruiter will join Gwinnett's economic development ranks.

County officials announced the hiring of Brock Smith Friday as the new economic development manager.

"This latest move wraps up the initial formation of an economic development function within county government," County Administrator Jock Connell said. "The team is now in place and will move full steam ahead to fulfill the board's goal of investing in the economic vitality of our community."

Earlier this year, the Board of Commissioners approved an ordinance establishing an economic development program, where certain businesses could be allowed tax breaks and other incentives if they moved to the county or expanded operations.

Smith comes to Gwinnett from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and before that worked for more than 10 years in the Georgia Department of Economic Development.

His experience includes project management, site selection, development of economic incentive programs, and work with communities, corporate executives, economic developers and real estate brokers.

Smith will make a salary of $62,614 and will report to Alfie Meek, head of the County's Economic Analysis Division in the Department of Financial Services.

"I'm very eager to get started with Gwinnett County - one of the fastest growing counties in the nation - and to help the county meet its growth and economic challenges," Smith said.