Dale County, AL - The Diner in Daleville is usually busy around lunchtime, but Friday wasn’t an ordinary day. Alabama Governor Robert Bentley sat in one of the booths.
“I just like to go and listen and find out what the problems are in that area,” he said.
It was part of his road to economic recovery tour. Midland city resident John Harvey is retired from the military. He came to share his worries with Bentley.
“We are concerned about the economy. We are concerned about a lot of closed businesses and those things that business supports with taxes,” said Harvey.
Daleville Mayor Wes Etheredge has concerns of his own.
“Our big thing is to support Fort Rucker and keep Fort Rucker here,” he said.
Governor Bentley says they are preparing on a statewide level for the 2015 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC). He said the state is focusing on eleven different industries with Accelerate Alabama. That diversification is key.
“If something happens to Fort Rucker we’ve got to be sure that we have jobs available in this area that are not related to that,” said Bentley.
Also, he says having the best workforce in the country doesn’t hurt when it comes to recruiting industry.
Bentley said, “The people of Alabama work harder than anyone. They take pride in their jobs. That’s what really helps me sell Alabama.”
It’s working. 26,000 future jobs have been announced since he took office.
Governor Bentley also talked about how important small business is to the state. About 75 percent of all jobs in the country are created by existing businesses and small businesses. It’s part of his goal to not only recruit industry, but also retain these small businesses that help create more jobs.