Here’s a concept – what happens when you find representatives that make forward-thinking decisions that help positively affect people, the environment, and businesses’ bottom line? Something called local economic development takes place, and it is good for people’s standard of living and quality of life when they live in these communities where they are able to accomplish such things. It is completely possible to create a win-win for all people involved, and this is where the focus should be.
Many functions of the federal government can be “pushed down” to the local level where taxpayers and voters can be closer to the decision-making and have greater participation in the processes. This helps keeps these processes transparent. That’s a good thing. Transparency and accountability in government are a good thing – I think we can all agree on that.
In my own business I have worked with many people involved in the recycling industry. Sometimes for-profit businesses are able to effectively work with local governments to create services that fill a need for people. To be truly sustainable, these services eventually have to be able to create the revenue streams on their own to be functional – people have to be willing to pay for that service. Being subsidized by taxpayer money on a continual basis indicates that this may be a product or service that people don’t want. It all depends on the community, the people, the businesses, and the leadership. There are many variables, and never a one-size-fits-all solution.
Yesterday I was able to make a trip to Summit County (not in our congressional district) with a small business owner who recycles paint. We went to pick up the paint that had been turned in from Summit County residents, and brought that paint back to Pueblo County (in our congressional district), where it is mixed together to create various earth-toned paint, which is then sold for $3/gallon to people looking for inexpensive paint. This allows the small business owner to still make a profit, yet provide a service for low-income residents of Pueblo County and beyond. This paint can be shipped all over the country. This is good for business
People recycle the paint in Summit County, then Summit County pays the small business owner to pick it up, and then the small business owner re-packages and sells his service. The paint does not end up in the landfill, and people get a product for a good price. A win-win. And it includes local governments working with small business owners.
Oftentimes us liberty-minded folks get very adamant about the dangers of an unrestrained federal government – and I am there in that fight. The Republicans and the Democrats in Washington, D.C. are not doing everything in their power to create economic development for it’s citizens (the best way is by letting businesses do their thing). It is also very important at the same time to point out positive and proactive local governments and officials that are actually doing something to help and protect their citizens. When you have people with integrity in government, that sure helps solve many of our problems.