County got some good news this week

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 1, 2000

The sun wasn’t the only thing shining this past week in Southern Ohio.

Saturday, April 01, 2000

The sun wasn’t the only thing shining this past week in Southern Ohio.

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The smiles that lit up the faces of Ironton residents were brighter than the golden rays that made the spring sky such a beautiful blue.

After months of hearing about layoffs and shutdowns, area residents finally heard some very welcome news: Liebert Corp., a computer technologies company, will set up shop in the former Cabletron Systems Inc. building as part of a $4 million project that will bring 150 jobs to Ironton before the end of the year and possibly another 50 over the next three years.

As our area’s talented workforce shows officials at Liebert Corp. how dedicated and capable our workers are, other companies should be poised to move here, too.

Even better news coming out of last week’s announcement is that Liebert hopes to hire as many former Cabletron employees as possible.

Of course, as we all know, by hiring these very capable workers, Liebert will be getting the state’s very best employees. Cabletron workers in Ironton were well known for their abilities to master the most complex and exacting processes involved in the high-tech world of electronics.

Our state officials should be commended for standing behind the pledges they made to local citizens during the dark days of winter when worry and concern were all people could think about. Gov. Taft and his close associates ­ T.J. Justice and Joy Padgett ­ worked hard to form an effective partnership with local residents and officials.

Weeks of hard work, tenacity and determination helped bring Liebert to Ironton, and it is much appreciated by everyone.

Now, we must build on this initial success and be part of a team that makes this just the first of many such announcements.

We have so many wonderful things to offer prospective employers, and it is up to us to work in partnership with the state to continue to tell our story and to bring more economic development to Ironton and Lawrence County.

Ironton Mayor Bob Cleary said something very appropriate this week: "This is really exciting news. These 150 jobs are needed in the worst way. It looks like a lot of the prayers have been answered and that the residents of our community are going to be able to stay here in Ironton and to work here in Ironton. We couldn’t have received better news."

One of the key phrases in the mayor’s comments was "prayers have been answered." Our strong religious faith makes us special. In good times or bad, it is the glue that has held us together as individual families and as a collective community.

Now, we need to continue offering up those prayers that the economic resurgence grows from last week’s announcement.

Many years ago, when the Dayton Malleable closed and families banded together to reopen the facility, community prayer vigils were held. Although that plant is now closed again, we still can harness the infinite power of prayer to bring employers to Lawrence County.

Together with our faith, we literally can move mountains.