In the last year alone, DeKalb has accomplished many things. Permitting processes have been significantly improved to help businesses operate more efficiently. New and expanded businesses mean more jobs and less poverty.
The county has partnered with the Development Authority of DeKalb County to compete in the world economy. The authority has a new strategic plan to help existing businesses grow and to attract industries. That plan is being reviewed by the Board of Commissioners.
DeKalb has an abundance of assets with which to grow its economy. It has an ideal strategic location in metro Atlanta, with access to numerous highways and rail and air transportation options. DeKalb has several Community Improvement Districts, including the Tucker-Northlake, Perimeter, East Metro and Stone Mountain CIDs. Tourism can grow if centered on historical sites such as Arabia Mountain and Stone Mountain Park.
Exceptional higher education institutions call DeKalb home, including Emory, Mercer, Oglethorpe and DeVry universities, as well as Agnes Scott, Georgia Perimeter and other colleges. The county also is home to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
DeKalb County will struggle with many tough issues on its road to economic success. It will be important for stakeholders to shoulder responsibility and work together to solve those issues and guarantee a bright future.