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Leaders, Work together

It takes approximately two minutes to cross from Ashland to Coal Grove and vice versa. Unless it’s rush hour or an errant driver has creamed one of the bridges putting it out of commission for months.

Such a short amount of time for that drive makes the Ohio River seem quite small. Yet, as much as we tout this area as the Tri-State, there are many times when that river becomes a line of demarcation, isolating each of the three cities, killing any sense of cooperation.

It’s not the river’s fault. It’s the people who live here. A case in point happened about a week ago when AK Steel announced massive layoffs, with as many as 700 workers out of work starting a week before Christmas.

The reason for the steelmaker’s woes comes from cheap steel dumped on the market. To help solve this the AK Steel along with other steel companies have filed anti-dumping cases with the International Trade Commission.

A rep from the Steelworkers Local said for every worker laid off, that layoff will affect seven more in the area. That means AK Steel’s problems are the Tri-State’s problems.

Yet, a week after the announcement, Ashland and local union officials got together to try to come up with a strategy for the short and long haul. No where in any report was there a mention of anyone from Ironton or Lawrence County government, nor anyone from Huntington and Cabell County showing up to that meeting.

Leadership should go beyond immediate borders. We are all in this together. Let’s act that way.