Admittedly, I have never been big on New Year’s Resolutions. I am of the opinion that if it is important on January 1… why wasn’t it important on September 11? But to some people, this is the time of year when they make plans for the next 365 days.
So, let’s share some possible goals.
1. The population of Grant County, along with the population of each municipality grows. We have to stop hemorrhaging people. Our population needs to grow. We need more students attending our schools. We need more businesses to open in Grant County, creating more jobs for people looking for work. We need to stop the outflow of our community wealth, and we need our community tax-base to show growth. Planning for population growth is tough in many ways. Heck, there are people reading this article that do not want to see more people moving here. They do not want to see new businesses open here. To them growth means current businesses will be harmed and somehow or another that the small-town way of life will be lost forever. Well community leadership needs to get past that way of thinking. When a community is stagnant, the community is dying. Our community leadership needs to devise a strategy to market our area for growth. We need to analyze our pitfalls and our assets to build a plan to achieve a pattern of growth by 2020.
2. We get a fried chicken joint in Grant County. I am aware that you see this one from me almost every year. But please understand, a fast-food chicken joint would be fantastic. Fresh, fried barn-yard bird with french fries and a roll… it just kind of rolls off your tongue when you say this simple phrase. I mean Walmart, Albertson’s and Food Basket are okay. But it just isn’t the same as pulling up to a drive-in window to get you a four-piece meal of fresh fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, with a warm roll, and then eating it out of a box. Darn it, now my mouth is watering up.
3. A change in politicians. This one is inevitable in some ways, because there are current local politicians that have termed out. Thus, we will see some new blood. However, there are always too many seats held by current folks that will have no opposition. It’s not that the current person is so bad… it’s simply that it would be nice to have a choice. And yes, sometimes the current person is bad and it is a shame when they run unopposed. And frankly, we still have too many people who are going to vote for the party, rather than the individual. And that works out bad on both sides of the political aisle.
4. A financial stable local hospital. It’s being worked on. Heck, in the news recently was an article describing alternative management plans being considered. Our hospital needs to become financially stable to produce a great quality of healthcare, to attract the specialty doctors that are needed, and to serve us, the general public, in such a way we can be proud of. To attract new patients from around the region. If we grow, as is suggested in comment #1, we need healthcare infrastructure that can handle growth in needed services.
5. We need to beat the heck out of local crime. Call it petty-crime, call it misdemeanor-crime, call it felony-crime, call it drug-crime, it’s still CRIME and it needs to stop. There is too much crime going on in Grant County. Punishment needs to be swift and deliberate. Molly-coddling the bad guys needs to stop and stop immediately. Our state politicians need to grasp that we do not want crime running rampant any longer. When convicted, the laws of New Mexico need to be tough on the guilty and caring for the victims.
But really, none of these things will happen without more money, and the money will need to come from higher numbers of people laboring in Grant County. It is truly a numbers racket. So how do we get more people to come to Grant County to live, work, and play? A discussion needs to begin ASAP to come up with a great course of action. We cannot just cry out manana, manana, manana (tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow). We need to work on growth NOW to have changes in 2018.