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For cities, everything matters in economic development

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Planned Best Western

The site at the corner of 12th and Noble Street in Anniston where the new Best Western Plus Hotel is to be built. (Stephen Gross / The Anniston Star)

In these parts, it seems Anniston City Hall is always sweating about economic development. Truth be told, that’s a 24/7 concern for virtually every city in America, and Anniston merely provides a quintessential local example.

Nothing turns a city’s wheels like new businesses, new industries and new jobs. Yes, Anniston’s leadership says it is laser-focused on economic development because that’s one of the city’s weak links. It’s also the weakness the City Council can most directly influence. But if you think Oxford’s economic developers aren’t constantly thinking of ways to further monetize its Interstate 20 opportunities, or Jacksonville City Hall doesn’t wish it could grow its sales-tax base, well, you’re not paying attention.