Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Changes in the Economy Bring Both Good and Bad

By: Julie Hartz

With the United States Federal Reserve cutting interest rates by 0.75% yesterday, the economic stability of our nation is under question.

Has the recent success our nation experienced actually been success? David Leonhart of the New York Times says it perfectly in the title of his latest article: “Worries That the Good Times Were Mostly a Mirage.”

But even though the nation is in an economic frenzy, Athens Chamber of Commerce director Jennifer Simon says Athens County is actually doing pretty well in the scheme of things.

Alissa Griffith interviewing Director Jennifer Simon

Simon said Athens’ economy has improved over the past few years with all of the development going on around the area. When McBee left Athens three years ago, taking about 400 jobs away with it, the economy was on the down side.

But now it is the reverse, she says, and more companies are coming in and offering jobs. She also says the new restaurants uptown, such as Campus Garden and Chipotle, are a positive addition to the city.

However Athens resident Jo Carpenter says there is still room for improvement. Carpenter says there are always things people like and do not like in the city they live.

Alissa Griffith interviewing Athens resident Jo Carpenter

Carpenter wishes Athens representatives would ask its residents what changes they would like to see. She says many residents talk about differences that should be made both uptown and down on East State Street.

She also mentions more shops such as Target or Kohls so she can do more of her shopping here in her neighborhood rather than in her hometown of Chillicothe.

Only time will tell whether Athens will listen to its residents and makes these additions.

In the meantime, the economy will keep changing year to year, with hope that it is for the better.

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