CFA has reached a major crossroads. New CFA President, Jerry Hamza, announced that on Tuesday, August 31, 2010 the CFA Board of Directors voted unanimously to move Central Office and the home of the CFA from Manasquan, New Jersey to Alliance, Ohio.
Talks about moving Central Office have been considered for quite a few years as a cost-saving measure. With tough financial realities to be faced, the CFA Board weighed the benefits against the liabilities of a change in location. It became clear that sacrifices needed to be made for the progress and future of the organization.
Within days after President Hamza's election, he had a relocation team approach several cities, looking for a package that would assist CFA in its plans to position itself for the future.
In July 2010, Alliance was one of eleven cities contacted as possible homes for CFA's Central Office. Other cities considered included:
- Buffalo, NY
- Rochester, NY
- Syracuse, NY
- Canton, OH
- Cleveland, OH
- Detroit, MI
- Erie, PA
- Indianapolis, IN
- Pittsburgh, PA
- Amarillo, TX
- St. Louis, MO
The above-mentioned cities were targeted as possible sites because of demographic, geographic, economic and socio-cultural criteria which included: proximity to major airports, proximity to a viable arts and entertainment district, travel and tourism potential and the cities' demonstrated commitment to economic development in attracting new business.
Alliance, OH came A'courting
At the beginning of August, CFA received an interesting offer from the city of Alliance, Ohio. Alliance is located in northeastern Ohio, approximately 50 miles southeast of Cleveland and 20 miles east of Canton, Ohio. According to 2000 Census data, Alliance has a population of 23,253 and is 8.6 square miles in size. Known as the Carnation City, Alliance is the home of the Lamborn red carnation which President William McKinley, who had roots in nearby Canton, Ohio, was known for wearing in his lapel as a good luck charm.
The building proved perfect to house both Central Office and the CFA Foundation, with the main floor suitable for the CFA Museum.
The fiscal package that Alliance has offered allows CFA the opportunity to buy and renovate the building, and purchase a badly needed $250,000 computer system. President Hamza predicts that within 36 months of the move, the change will create an increase in cash flow of $250,000 to $350,000 a year. Tax savings alone over the next 12 years will nearly pay for the move, building renovations, and the purchase of a new computer system.
Each CFA staff member will have opportunity to relocate at their current rate of compensation as well as receiving relocation assistance to facilitate their move.
This move will not be easy, but it is not the first time CFA has relocated. Hopefully, the move will be complete by late Spring or early Summer of 2011. The CFA board is excited to be in Alliance, Ohio, and the town officials are looking forward to adding the CFA headquarters to their list of attractions. CFA looks to a brighter future as it begins a new era in Alliance, Ohio.