The three ‘Js’

No question about focus of new Municipal Development District
Rockdale’s new Municipal Development District (MDD) is up and rolling. It went into existence Oct. 1, held meetings last week and has elected officers.

It’s so new you might think a “feeling its way along” period would be in order. That’s true to a certain extent. But there’s already an impetus to focus the MDD in one direction, toward a goal of “the three Js.”

That’s “jobs, jobs, jobs.”

Mayor Larry Jones, with the backing of the city council, told the MDD he and the council believe the MDD’s first priority should be “out promoting jobs for Rockdale.”

That might seem obvious but it’s good to have such an agenda pointed out up front. There’s a legitimate point of view that MDDs should also have the interests of existing businesses as part of their agenda.

Nothing wrong with that. But Jones pointed out there are already entities who are supposed to be advocates for businesses which are already here, the Chamber of Commerce for instance.

Put simply, somewhere out there are businesses who would come to Rockdale, not because it would be good for us but because it would be good for them.

As Jones pointed out, employees at those businesses wouldn’t walk around in the snow four months out of the year, their bottom-line bean counters wouldn’t have to factor in a state income tax, their shippers would have ready access to rail lines and great roads and a metro area of over a million is just a few minutes west.

Except those businesses don’t know Rockdale exists. The MDD’s job is to find them, tell them, then tell them again and again.

It won’t be easy. But for the first time an entity which has the will to promote Rockdale will also have the funds to back up its ideas. Maybe those ideas already exist, maybe they haven’t rattled the synapses in anyone’s brain yet.

But they will. And when they do, here’s what the ultimate goal of it all is.

The three Js, as in “jobs, jobs, jobs.”—M.B.

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2010-10-21 digital edition

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