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March 22, 2013

Transcript of Stillwater Chamber of Commerce's City Council forum Friday

(Continued)

STILLWATER, Okla. — Pina: "Jobs, retail or industry, industrial or economic development jobs, I want the kind of jobs to come that will be able to allow  a family to say we've got enough money now; let's look for a piece of property. When they look for a piece of property, I want them to look at Stillwater. I want them to grow roots here .I want them to buy homes and have a tax base. I want jobs to be able to give a good living wage. I'm passionate about the idea that the better the job that we bring to this community, the lower our poverty rates will go. If you look at our comprehensive plan, I think we're somewhere around 1/3rd of this community is under the poverty guidelines. Well, if we bring the right jobs, then we can begin to say we'll eliminate or at least downplay some of that poverty in the sense that we've got people out there that are not on the dole and are beginning to pay their fair share, buy homes, look around say this is a great community to raise children in. I don't want Stillwater to be a transient society where a job is here for a moment and I think the pipeline does a lot of this to us. The pipeline comes in, people get hired, the pipeline goes away and people are out of work. I want substantial jobs where the people can stay and grow."

Weaver: "I think, again, I have to be careful about me pre-determining what industry do we need. We need to be open and listening to whatever might come our way, but there are some natural things that you might think of. Think about FES, Frontier Electronics, Nomadics, SST; those high tech businesses that bring quality jobs to town that have that natural connection to the community that makes sense. ASCO, actually, was impressed the education community that we are. Stan (Clark), who would have thought 40 years ago you would have a plant out by the airport throwing out T-shirts by the truckload. We shouldn't just try to predetermine what things are going to be here. We need to be open. We need to listen. And we need to work to make sure that we can be accessible and that we're attractive to businesses and industries that want to come here."

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