Monday, July 18, 2011

Is Steve Holt Serious?

Shoals Chamber of Commerce President Steve Holt shocked many in the community when he held up National Alabama as an example of what other countries can do for this area. Said Holt:

If you look at the more recent investments in this market — National Railcar began as a Canadian operation...

If Mr. Holt, or anyone else, thinks that the RSA's deal with Canada's National Rail Car is a success in any sense of the word, we see the need for more psychiatric treatment centers, not foreign business.


It also came as a shock that the Guizhou Shenqi Group is now being touted as wanting to build a graduate level college specializing in health care management. That's a far cry from the manufacture of natural medicines, whatever that may entail.

We have to wonder why, if Councilman Barry Morris' version of the proposed enterprise is correct, it hasn't been pointed out before. It's not surprising that some considered the possibility of a money laundering operation being involved.

Yes, the Shoals needs economic development from wherever we can get it. If Dr. Morris knew more about the company than was originally stated, he should have come forward much earlier; however, the field of heath care management is far removed from pharmaceuticals. Unless someone clarifies this company's interest in the property, we suggest Sam Pendleton and James Barnhart were correct in asking questions of this Chinese gift horse.


The Lauderdale County Sheriff's office and its dispatch center are being temporarily separated in order to remodel the courthouse's second floor offices. More than one person has suggested to us that Sheriff Ronnie Willis prefers that arrangement be made permanent after the renovations are complete. Should the sheriff's dispatch operation be permanently housed with the county's 911 offices? Just what are the pros and cons? We welcome further input from the community, input both to us and the county commission if there should be a tremendous downside to this arrangement.