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Another year is ending and 2018 has been one of ups and downs for different sectors of the community.
In Stephenville there have been businesses that closed due to the challenges with the economy, but there are also other developments going ahead and those are the ones politicians prefer to focus on.
As pointed out in a year-end interview with Mayor Tom Rose, there’s the expansion to the Marine Harvest facility near Port Harmon, Central Service Racing setting up on Massachusetts Drive in Stephenville and the new Vision Automotive and RV development on West Street.
Rose says these developments demonstrate there is a high level of confidence in the business climate.
There’s also confidence in a new sector of the economy with Biome Grow and its 100 per cent-owned Newfoundland and Labrador-based subsidiary, The Back Home Medical Cannabis Corp., expecting to get into operation of its first in-province cannabis production facility in Barachois Brook sometime in 2019.
What they all add up to is more jobs for the area and it seems to be and always has been what was wanted, especially in this time of economic instability.
With Alberta’s economy also taking a hit in the oil sector, and workers who once travelled back and forth from different places in Western Newfoundland no longer doing so as much, the economy here is affected.
But the difference now is that the prices in an inflated housing market may drop somewhat with the large amount up for sale.
There are some people working in Alberta and other places who come home and decide to retire here, but there are others who have their children and grandchildren there who won’t be coming back.
And you can’t blame them.
In Stephenville and area there is an economy dependent on small industry, private businesses and jobs in the public sector and, of course, it is hoped that will increase.
As MHA John Finn said, the Motive Centre could also bring jobs to the area with interest in it internationally.
Whenever a new year rolls around there is the hope and promise of something better.
The wish, of course, is for even more improvement in the economy and that 2019 will be more prosperous than 2018 has been.