The headlines blared: 240 jobs lost at 3M in Columbia! Falling from a high of almost 1,000 employees in 1996 to 260 today is not a “concern.” It is a disaster. Columbia and Boone County cannot absorb or afford 240 newly unemployed workers. The city’s economic base was shaken by an economic earthquake. Neither paper expanded on the story over the weekend. The three (four if you count ABC/Fox as two) television news organizations gave this minimal air time. No one asked the questions that needed to be asked: Were city leaders kept in the dark of the impending firing of almost one-half of the remaining employees from one of Columbia’s largest manufacturing facilities? Is the relationship between the city and its major job providers so bad that decisions concerning the economic well-being of the city and region are not shared?
Local government must actively respond to economic problems
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