The Commerce News
January 5, 2000
To Do To Make Year 2000 A Success
With little or no trouble
from Y2K and no sign of an impending end of the world, Jackson
County lurched into the year 2000, and, according to many people,
the New Millennium. The establishment of time is rather arbitrary
(somebody had to declare 1 A.D., and not all people recognize
our calendar), and the year 2000 will be different not because
of its number, but because of what happens during it.
Each of us has a little control over what happens during 2000.
Our milestones, accomplishments, mistakes and fortune (good or
bad) will determine whether it is good. And the combination of
events that affect us will be both global and local, though largely
Ideally, not only will 2000 be a good year for each of us as
individuals, but it will also be a good year for our communities,
a year in which they overcome obstacles, solve problems, operate
efficiently and deliver needed services, all while being as unobtrusive
Here's what we'd like to see happen during 2000 to make it a
·Commerce completing its water plant upgrade and getting
permitted to remove upward of 4 million gallons per day from
the Grove River. That work is in process and will meet the city's
water needs for years to come.
·Nicholson getting its zoning ordinance implemented and
beginning to control the development that has been predominantly
mobile home parks.
·Maysville's government settling down and working better
together, and voters electing someone in March who can work with
the other officials.
·Commerce continuing to improve its financial condition
while building up its utility distribution systems, repairing
old sidewalks and even building new ones. Its Downtown Development
Authority, working with the Jackson County Area Chamber of Commerce,
will renovate the old City Hall and start a successful small
business incubation center there just as planned.
·Commerce taking a serious look at what should be done
when new shopping centers are proposed to prevent the problems
that exist now with the old Bi-Lo shopping center and will soon
exist when Wal-Mart leaves. Those huge, empty buildings and parking
lots are a blight in any community.
·Commerce High School addressing the past three years
of substandard SAT scores with an improved curriculum. Teaching
kids how to take the SAT, playing background music while they
take it and giving everyone the PSAT may all be helpful, but
they are not substitutes for a curriculum that better builds
the skills required for the SAT and academic success in college.
·BJC Medical Center recruiting three or four general practitioners
who will fit into the community and help support the hospital.
·A strong field of competent candidates qualifying for
the five county commission seats under the new county government
form, and voters electing five men and women who will diligently
search for the best possible county manager.
·Public officials in all of our communities being more
selective about the new development they allow, be it residential
·The chamber of commerce and county and city governments
deciding to focus on the development of smaller retail businesses
in our downtowns. Big stores are nice and convenient, but smaller
retail stores and shops add character and community. The Downtown
Development Authority will have the lead role in that in Commerce,
hopefully getting some good out of the 1999 marketing survey.
·The development of community pride such that citizens,
business and industry will all desire to keep public and private
property well maintained, litter free and attractive. You can
tell a lot about a community by the appearance of its homes,
businesses, streets and public facilities. We have a lot of room
The Commerce News
January 5, 2000
To Help Start A
Resolutions for a New Millennium:
·Realize that there is nothing inordinately different
about the "new millennium" unless you make it different.
2000 is going to be just like 1999 unless people make it special.
·Enjoy life a little more. There's plenty of time for
work and stress. Try to laugh more, particularly at yourself.
Not only should you take time to smell the roses, but you should
also plant a rose bush.
·Watch where you place your passions. Too many of us are
passionate about unimportant things in life, from politics to
athletics. Be passionate about your convictions, but don't have
a stroke because the Bulldogs drop a crucial pass.
·Go the other way. If everyone is traveling in one direction,
try going the opposite way. You'll have lot less competition,
and you'll find life a lot more interesting. Remember, the ways
of the world are seldom godly, and it isn't mandatory that you
drive an SUV.
·Worry less. That's easier said than done, but most of
what we worry about never happens and most of what does is unavoidable.
Worrying is not just counterproductive; it is damaging.
·Seek knowledge. Whether you do it through reading, watching
the Home & Garden Channel or by the Internet, make an effort
to be more knowledgeable. We have access to an infinite amount
of information. Knowledge really is power.
·Do something for the environment. You don't have to personally
repair the hole in the ozone layer, but you could start a compost
pile, buy your beer in recyclable cans rather than in bottles
or quit throwing your old tires on the side of the nearest dirt
road. Everyone can do something.
·Reduce the clutter. Most of us have more stuff than we
need, more than we can successfully store. We're a country of
pack rats. Have a yard sale, donate to the Potter's House or
otherwise dispose of a few things. You'll need the space to store
the acquisitions of 2000 anyway.
·In connection with the above, simplify. Do without something.
Keeping up with the Joneses is good for the economy in general,
but does nothing for yours in particular. You probably don't
even like the Joneses.
·Reduce your debt. If we all followed the above step,
we could all cut down on personal debt. Wouldn't you feel better
with a zero balance on your VISA card? If Congress can balance
the national budget, surely we can balance our personal budgets.
·Read a good book. Surely there is a classic novel out
there you've never read, whether it's "Huckleberry Finn"
or "Pride and Prejudice." Avoid William Faulkner and
Thomas Hardy like the plague, but there are thousands of good
books you can borrow for free from the library.
·Lose weight, if only so you can enjoy gaining it back
later. And if you succeed in keeping it off, call me and tell
me how you did it.
·Do something you've never done before. A vacation to
a new location, an off-Broadway play at the Classic Center, a
Saturday of hammering for Habitat for Humanity, take up a new
hobby or vote for a Libertarian.
·Disregard people who suggest resolutions for you for
the New Millennium. They're all idiots who think they're smarter
than you are.
·Start the millennium the right way by having a successful