JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - City, county, and state leaders met last week to discuss economic development in Northeast Arkansas.
It was the first of what we hope will be many meetings.
We also hope a plan and action will come from them.
This formal agreement among Northeast Arkansas communities is long overdue.
Northwest Arkansas has been one economic voice for over 40 years.
I know the comparisons to Northwest Arkansas are tiresome but look where they are now.
We need to understand that what is good for Jonesboro is good for Paragould.
And what is good for Paragould is good for Jonesboro.
What is good for Jonesboro is good for Walnut Ridge, and so on.
You get the picture.
There are concerns. We get it.
Communities can lose their identity when we all start to think as a team and not as individual communities.
It’s also hard to give up what some communities have while knowing they are better suited in another city.
For example, the regional passenger airport should be in Walnut Ridge.
Again, look over to the other side of the state.
Most of us can name five or more cities there.
They did not lose their identity.
And each city made the other better.
We have to do something because what we are currently doing is not working.
While Jonesboro is the hub, it is not the region.
There are many great communities here.
Let’s find the best in each town and use it to make the region even better.
We can do this for a better Region Eight.