Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Election Issues 2006 - Jobs

Jobs and the economic health of the Concho Valley are an important component of the upcoming elections. A portion of our sales tax money is used to attract, promote, and assist businesses that want to relocate or grow here. Here is some of what we know about our economic health.

Our unemployment rate is low. There are factors such as the number of people that have just given up the search for a job, and those that have moved to big cities in search of jobs that don't show up in this low unemployment rate. Our lack of population growth and our shrinking school enrollment seems to support the idea that people are leaving to find jobs. Especially those with families

Our median wage is lower than the state and national average. We don't have that many high paying jobs. We seem to have plenty of entry level jobs, but good career type jobs are in short supply.

There are a number of factors that are limiting job growth. Transportation is a problem that will take a long time to adequately solve. Taxes can be detrimental to job growth. Finding the right markets to sell San Angelo and the Concho Valley to is a difficult problem.

Given what we know, how do the candidates plan on helping the Concho Valley grow in the years to come. Is any job a good job, or is it time for us to be selective in the type of jobs we attract. How do we have an economy where the kids don't have to leave to succeed?

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