For Mayors, Handling Unemployment Remains the Most Important Job

Gateway City's chief executive talks jobs and education.

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We're in a national economy here and we are being affected like any other city in America and there are some cities that are worse and there are some cities that aren't as bad from an unemployment standpoint. The auto industry was a big industry for us, we lost a lot of jobs there. People are spending less money so it impacts the hospitality industry significantly. Tourism and hospitality is a big sector here and as people spending less money it impacts a lot of other things. There has been downsizing in businesses in the financial sector.

What do you make of President Obama's State of the Union address calling for innovation to create jobs?

I agree. To be competitive as a country, our cities need to be competitive globally. I think if we can get more kids ready for kindergarten, which will help us tremendously in having them better prepared for the workforce when they become adults. Too many kids are going to school nationally not prepared for kindergarten and by the time they get to fifth grade, they lose interest in school, before you know it they end up being drop outs and another dropout statistic.

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