Economy looks good to us

Published 12:13 am Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Looking at Natchez-Adams County’s economy is a bit like the proverbial glass half full or half empty debate.

The truth is subject to the positive and negative flows that permeate our brains.

Is it half empty?

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Certainly heavy industry — once a mainstay in our community — is all but gone. Titan Tire, International Paper, Johns Manville. Each name evokes generations of workers, generations who were forced to find other work or retire when these plants were shuttered.

Or is it half full?

A new prison is being built in the county, downtown seems more bustling than it has in a long, long time, Rentech is still a possibility and the general economic mood seems to be lifting. Each of those “drops” adds to the level of economic water in our glass.

But beyond those things let’s look at construction — current and planned — as an indicator.

One new hotel has been built and several more are either under construction or will be soon. The people making those investments aren’t doing so just on a whim. They truly believe they’ll make a profit on the ventures. More drops fall into the glass.

Housing has been tight here since Hurricane Katrina’s winds drove new residents into our area.

This week, the city’s planning department approved a new housing development plan. Each of the 75 to 80 units of The Preserve fills the glass a bit more.

Call us optimistic, but for our money, the glass is half full — the waiter seems to be heading our direction with a refill.