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EDITORIAL - Muhlenberg County Faces Hard Times 

MUHLENBERG COUNTY, Ky. (01/12/15) – The economy of the Muhlenberg County is currently facing a very challenging year in 2015.

So far, over the past year and the beginning of 2015, the local job market has made a drastic and financially dangerous drop. Local citizens have seen coal mine closures, issues with TVA employment and now local school employees are looking at a potential drop in pay rates, as well as a cut in certain benefits. On top of that, 51 teachers are looking at a layoff. If that wasn’t enough, Uncle Lees, a major employer in the area, has shut its’ doors permanently, leaving a large number of citizens without jobs.

From the Uncle Lee’s aspect, the local jobs are not the only issue that will impact the community. Uncle Lee’s brought in a massive amount of money from throughout the state, and bordering states, with customers traveling into the area to purchase hunting and fishing supplies. They also brought in funds via online orders. Also, the annual Deer Classic event, largely funded by Uncle Lees, brought in a massive crowd and finances from other areas throughout the United States.

KenCo News has received a large amount of input on these issues, and it has become obvious that many local citizens and officials are extremely concerned about the future of Muhlenberg County.

The projected outcome of the major job losses and potential pay cuts has had many various results, but one of the more common that is being seen is that local citizens are seeking jobs outside of the Muhlenberg County area. Another issue that is being seen more commonly as time goes by is the concept of local citizens relocating outside of the county.

What can we, as the citizens of Muhlenberg County, do to help soften these financial blows?

First, shop local. The amount of local finances spent in surrounding areas is extremely high. Make it a point to look in your county before buying merchandise from other areas. You will not only be supporting local businesses, but you will also be supporting the Muhlenberg County economy as a whole.

Another major manner in which you can make a difference is to stand up and speak your mind. In the past, we have often stood back and watched as things happen around us, talking only to friends and family about it, and voicing our opinions through social networking. Now, in this time of hardship, it is time to stand up and make your thoughts known. This is your county. These are your citizens. If you disagree with a decision, voice your opinion. Do so in a professional manner. Approach the officials in question and discuss with them your outlook and how you think we can improve our community.

The 2015 year is looking to be a difficult one for Muhlenberg County. Nevertheless, don’t give up hope and stand strong for Muhlenberg. 

J.L. Graham
KenCo News