Some homework before we start today: Please read Sunday’s Rome News story by Doug Walker on lingering questions about the proposal to move industrial recruitment from the Rome Floyd Chamber to a city/county-appointed panel. The story captures some of the intense questions — that went unanswered — about the entire plan. Here’s the link to the story. We shared the story with some comments; we’ve added those comments below but first recommend you read Doug’s story.
- This switch would lead to a THIRD local economic development authority in Rome and Floyd County?
- There were no definitive answers to some city commissioners’ questions and yet the issue was pushed for a vote that evening. That same proposal was passed by the County Commission 5-0 earlier in the day — with zero specifics asked or answered.
- Our issue: Were this a business plan submitted to a bank for loan approval, they’d laugh it out the door with a huge “rejected” stamp on it. And rightfully so.
- Our concern: This is how we want a city/county-run development authority making decisions and deals to attract new industry? Solely on “feels good” and “feels right” intentions without any due diligence?
- Our suggestion: Table it until a critical review of all costs, contributions and impact is completed; coax Al Hodge to postpone his retirement until 2020 while a proper proposal is developed; and put the idea to the community in the form of a referendum. If voters are trusted to make decisions on SPLOST packages laden with economic development proposals, surely voters can be trusted to decide what type model they prefer the community uses to lure new jobs and industry.
About those headlines:
Monday: Bells will be ringing … : The Salvation Army starts the red kettle campaign on Monday with locations at Kroger and Hobby Lobby in Rome. More locations go live on Friday. A donation of your time also is appreciated. Volunteers to ring the bell are sought, individuals and groups: For more: Contact RomeGA@uss.salvationarmy.org or 706.291.4745 to schedule.
Tuesday: What’s next in economic development shuffle. The agenda item for the 8 a.m. meeting at the Rome Floyd Chamber pretty much sums it up — “Rome Floyd County Economic Development Authority/ future.” That authority board includes three members — chamber Chair Pete McDonald, County Commission Chair Rhonda Wallace and Rome Mayor Jamie Doss — who are behind the push to move Rome and Floyd County’s economic development efforts from the chamber to an authority consisting of three appointees each from the county and city commissions.
Tuesday: The naming of the grand marshal for the 2018 Rome Christmas Parade. The naming takes place at the parade committee’s annual breakfast at Coosa Country Club hosted by Heritage First Bank. The parade is Nov. 27 at 6:30 p.m. with a Nov. 29 rain date.
Friday: Northwest Georgia remains a force as high school football moves to the quarterfinals. Five schools, from five different classifications or sizes (5A, 4A, etc.), remain in the hunt for a trip to Atlanta for the championships. Our odds are pretty good when you consider Cartersville and Rome both have won respective state titles back-to-back in recent years and Calhoun won 3A last season.
- John McClellan’s high school football playoff picks for this Friday: Lopsided wins for Rome, Cartersville, Calhoun, Rockmart. Eagles Landing will be too tough for Darlington. McClellan