Letter — What’s the town and county’s plan for business growth?

Published 12:36 pm Thursday, August 5, 2021

To the Editor:

I plan occasionally to ask some questions out of a framework of concern for a thriving community.

Wandering around the town, I see too many vacant shops/storefronts in which the business did not merely move but failed. Business failures are common, we know, but research suggests that five-year survival rates are perhaps higher than many expect, and higher in more rural areas than in urban areas.

Email newsletter signup

How are the town and county promoting small business development? Do you rely on lower taxes and fees to reduce government-imposed barriers to business formation? Do you rely on educational programs such as assisting local entrepreneurs more directly (such as assisting business plan development, assisting relationships with lenders for capital formation, etc.? Do you have incentives for recruiting new businesses into the town/county (for example, facilitating solar roofs to reduce energy costs to the business, ensuring high speed reliable broadband, etc.?

Literally, I am asking what is the town’s and the county’s plan because I do not know.

What I do know is that there are tons (apparently, literally) of federal monies out there and still coming out, mostly passed through the commonwealth, but also through federal agencies, that if well directed by a local community can be a once-in-a-generation opportunity or if undirected, unfocused, unplanned, a multi-generational waste. Has the town and county asked Congressperson (Bob) Good’s office and/or an office in Governor (Ralph) Northam’s cabinet — or preferably both — to convene some conversations about bringing/focusing/spending to benefit Farmville/Prince Edward County business development?

There are so many good ideas available for a rural community with talent and commitment.

Edward Strickler