In an attempt to strengthen our local economy while adding to our community’s quality of life, there’s a proposal before the Boonville City Council to construct a new sports complex; from an economic development perspective, this project has the potential to bring thousands of tourists to Boonville who will undoubtedly spend hundreds of thousands of dollars throughout our local economy on an annual basis. On Monday, May 21, 2012 the city council will vote whether or not to include the sports complex in a proposed one half cent sale tax initiative being placed on the August ballot for voter approval; and while there are few times in our lives we can actually have an impact on our governance outside of the ballot box, this is one of those times, and I would encourage you to let your city councilman know that you would like the opportunity to vote for more recreational opportunities for our community’s youth, while also enhancing our overall local economy (find their contact information here: http://www.boonvillemo.org/CityCouncil.aspx).
We must all understand that our community’s economic landscape is changing and therefore we must start reacting accordingly. Even as far back as 2003 our city leaders had the foresight to recognize the potential in recreational activities as referenced by the city’s 2003 Comprehensive/Strategic Plan where it identified the need to “enhance local quality of life factors, such as by expanding recreational facilities and programs,” and to, “invest in recreational programs, especially those for youth,” and, “provide recreation programs to help integrate new citizens” into our community.
For years the city of Boonville went through a successful reign of industrial economic development with the addition of Nordyne, Fuqua, Indecco and Caterpillar. Unfortunately, the economic development landscape has changed and with the loss of some employers and the downsizing of others, many of our recent economic development successes have been in the service industry. From the casino, to festivals, parks and trails, tourism and the arts, much of our infrastructure is now centered on small businesses that create service oriented jobs, the same types of jobs that will be created from servicing a new sports complex. As a city leader I assure you that we are perusing all tourism and manufacturing economic opportunities, and regardless of the which sector a project of this magnitude presents itself from, when it has the potential to strengthen our local economy we must take action.
I know that we all lead busy lives, but please, take five minutes to call or send your representative an email, or, if you can, come to Monday night’s city council meeting (city hall at 7 pm) to show your support for our youth, and our economy.
Noah L. Heaton, Councilman
Ward 2, City of Boonville, MO