Council looking forward

Published 3:00 am Thursday, December 1, 2016

The new Troy City Council is now complete and ready to serve for the next four years.

New council president Marcus Paramore spoke about what he sees coming up for the council in the near future.

“What I would like to see is more efforts to bring industry and jobs into Troy,” Paramore said. “We’ve been doing that the past four years. I want us to continue to recruit industries to put our people to work including Pike County.”

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The council brought in and expanded industry during Paramore’s first term as District 3 Councilman, but much of the recent focus has been on the new retail coming in with the Park Place development.

“It makes it a lot easier to recruit industry when you have more retail,” Paramore said. “It gives you more cards to play when recruiting industry to have a vibrant retail market. You cant have one without the other; they go hand in hand. As retail gets better, industry will come in. Once industry comes in, more retail comes in because more people have good jobs. We want to make sure those two mirror each other.”

Paramore said he wants enough jobs to be created in the county to not only employ its current residents, but to draw people into the county for jobs as well.

One way that Paramore wants to continue economic development is through continued strengthening of the relationship with Troy University.

“We’ve always experienced a wonderful town and gown relationship with the university,” Paramore said. “My goal is to make sure it stays that way. We can work together, especially in economic development.”

Another major focus lately has been infrastructure, with the Enzor Road Connector Project being called the “biggest infrastructure project in the city’s modern history” by Mayor Jason Reeves. Paramore added that the council has done a lot to get water and utilities up to date as well to stabilize that infrastructure.

Looking forward, Paramore said nothing specific related to infrastructure is on the horizon for the council at this time.

One of the first actions of new council on Tuesday was to adopt the Downtown Plan as a guide for development in the district.

Paramore said it’s still too early to say exactly what parts of that plan will be worked on first, but that the plan will hopefully guide the council toward a stronger downtown in the upcoming years. “Hopefully it will be a good roadmap to revitalize downtown,” paramour said. “The Square is the heart of the city, and we want to make sure that part of the community is vibrant as well.

“ It can serve a lot of different avenues for a lot of different people and it could be a great center point for students at the university to have some place to go as far as retail and entertainment.”