So, what’s a town to do in this day and age? The economists talk about how Arizona has come back from the recession of a few years ago, but there’s little evidence for that in the towns of the Copper Corridor. Our median incomes continue to drop. Our homes show little growth in value, or even show a reduction. And we’re getting older. Obituaries are our stock in trade rather than birth notices.
Well, I woke up this morning and thought to myself, “Today is the day to have a good day.” I started with my own good news that I can see. I had eye surgery a few days ago and all went well. Colors are real again! I worked outdoors with my plants, I called a few friends, and then drove to Superior to visit the art showing at the Wild Cow Gallery. I ran across friends there, and we talked for hours. One of them suggested that my column might focus on economic development projects which are coming about.
That got me thinking about the fact that sometimes we need to feel positive in order to accomplish other positive things. The first paragraph of this column is a litany of woes, of the things that are going wrong. But changing a bad situation into a good one cannot be changed by saying, “The town used to be better off,” no matter how many times we say it. We need positive vision, good heartedness, and the willingness to work with each other.
Here’s a litany of some good things to think about:
– Copper is now running $2.85 per pound. This is not even close to the boom price five years ago, when copper couldn’t be produced quickly enough, but today’s price is part of a slow climb over the previous two years.
– The new Apache Sky Casino near Dudleyville is open for business. There are full days and slow days, but anything new begins with a measure of risk. The good news is that the new casino is following the wise course of its sister near Globe, by starting small and pacing itself with a mind toward growth. Many people from the San Carlos Reservation are joined by people from our towns in working there, a boon for all of us.
– The Whistlestop Café has opened in Kearny. The Sunny 77 Café has opened in Mammoth. These new cafes are providing menu variety, not competition to existing eateries, and bring new jobs.
– Resolution Copper has four positions to fill and has them posted on ResolutionCopper.com/jobs/. Some positions with contractors for Resolution are also posted there.
– The rains have been good. The desert is beautiful, and the waters of San Carlos Lake are rising.
I bet you can make a list of more good things. So, what’s a town to do? How can we develop the conditions that make good things come about? And are there things that the towns can do together to make better conditions for positive change? I want to hear from you.