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Gov. Ivey speaks at October Chamber luncheon

By J.R. Tidwell / Editor

Alabama governor Kay Ivey was the guest speaker at the October luncheon hosted by the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce on Oct. 2.

The Chamber held the event at Jemison City Hall, where a crowd of around 200 people gathered to hear Gov. Ivey speak.

Ivey spoke of the relationships and values built in small town, rural Alabama, being herself from Camden in Wilcox County, which is southeast of Selma.

“No matter where life leads you, you always remember those core values you learned in small-town Alabama,” she said. “The thing that keeps us together is we have those values. It is a common bond among us. Whether you are a teacher in Clanton, a business owner here in Jemison, you’re a governor from Camden or the United States attorney general, all of us are shaped by small-town Alabama.

“One thing about growing up in a small town, everybody knows everybody, everybody knows somebody and somebody knows somebody. If there’s one thing that we can learn from growing up in small-town Alabama, it’s that relationships matter. Relationships matter when you are trying to create a nurturing environment for our students to learn and grow. Everything we do today effects our tomorrow.”

Ivey also spoke of how important it is for Alabama’s students to get a quality education in order to produce a better, more highly-skilled workforce.

“A productive learning journey has to start with a strong foundation,” Ivey said. “Equipping our students with the proper skills and a good education will ensure our students have a strong finish.”

Ivey said that during her time in office, she has instructed the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) to use $5 million to improve infrastructure in Chilton County.

She also said that Community Development Block grants for sewer and structural improvements in Jemison and Thorsby had been given through the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA).

“Infrastructure impacts our daily lives,” she said. “It’s how we go to and from work and our students go to and from school.”

Ivey said that there were 313 highway patrol officers when she took office as governor, but she has worked with the legislature to increase funding to make that number over 400 troopers before February of next year.

“All of my efforts to improve infrastructure and to increase public safety coverage are made for the right reasons and for what’s best for the people of Alabama,” she said.

Ivey also spoke about the unemployment rate and recruiting jobs in the state.

She said that Alabama’s unemployment rate is the lowest it has ever been.

“More Alabamians are working today folks than ever in our state’s history and earning a good wage,” she said. “In fact, Chilton County is tied for the sixth-lowest unemployment rate in the entire state. Y’all need to be proud of that. Alabamians are eager to work, and I have witnessed that firsthand.

“Alabama’s unparalleled workforce, combined with our collaborative economic development efforts, are why countries from around the globe are looking to make Alabama their destination. There are more jobs in Alabama than at any other time in our history.”