Op-ed: Better paying jobs & continued economic growth

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Rep. Randall Shedd, R-Fairview (Cullman Tribune file photo)

Every working-age, able-bodied person needs a good paying job.

Not too many years ago, the dominant manufacturing industry in Alabama was the textile industry. Just as Ross Perot predicted in presidential debates, the textile industry moved to other countries when Congress approved NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement).

Alabama’s textile jobs became almost nonexistent.

Fortunately, Alabama’s leaders had the vision and determination to recruit automotive and aerospace industries to replace the textile industry. Better paying jobs with better benefits!

Attracting new business and industries and good paying jobs continues to be a high priority of Governor Ivey and her team. And, they are good at it!

A good strong local economy is like a puzzle. One piece missing can ruin the whole thing, but the most important component in economic development is it must be a priority of local elected leaders and community leaders.

A strong local economy doesn’t just happen; we have to have a plan and work the plan.

Alabama has a good workforce development network with workforce development councils, AIDT, universities in the state and the community college system that can adjust quickly to the training needs of a business or industry in their service area.

This is crucial in attracting and keeping business and industry in our state.

It is very important that we as a state and each locality make meeting the needs of existing business and industry a high priority. We don’t want another state recruiting them and their jobs away from us.

We need to be thinking and be prepared to deal with the next downturn in the national economy. It’s not a matter of if, but when, that cycle happens.

We must continue our efforts to provide the infrastructure and business climate business and industry need to thrive.

We have to keep in check unnecessary regulations, and we need to remember and support agribusiness, Alabama’s $70 billion a year industry!

Thank y’all for letting me represent you in Montgomery!

Randall Shedd
District 11, Alabama
House of Representatives
1461 Welcome Road
Cullman, AL 35058
Cellular & Text 256.531.6641
Email randallshedd@icloud.com