A municipality or regional district can incorporate or invest shares in an economic development corporation to do the work in a community or region.

A corporation is a legal entity separate and apart from its owners, the shareholders. Legally, it has all the rights and obligations of an individual.

A corporation can:

  • Enter into contracts
  • Own real property
  • Sue and be sued


Establishing a corporation limits legal liability, protecting the local government from financial risk. A corporation:

  • Engages external expertise, freeing up council and board time
  • Can develop and adjust programming quickly based on community need
  • Operates separate from local government


Limitations include:

  • Liability and financial risk rest solely on the corporation
  • Potential income source goes to the corporation instead of back into the local government
  • Challenges around communication and relationship building
  • Performance metrics can be difficult to establish

How to Proceed

Learn more about establishing an economic development corporation.