Orange County should seek feedback from those actually hurting while building plan to restart business after Coronavirus fight

On Monday afternoon, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said a plan would be needed to restart business after the region eventually recovers from the Coronavirus battle. He added that he would seek input from businesses leaders in the area.

Here is hoping that for once we look beyond the usual list of well connected lobbyists and corporations for input. And consider those who are actually suffering in this pandemic for guidance on our next move.

I say that because politicians in the area go straight to the people that will connect them with campaign donations and business hook-ups when forming groups like these. In return, efforts stumble because the groups that are assembled put their profits ahead of what’s actually needed in the community.

We see it with affordable housing. We see it with tourism. We’re going to see it here.

That’s why we’re paying agencies millions to tweet, instead of producing a real return of investment for the community.

Let’s widen the voices we’re listening to. For a change.

What we need are small business owners from every corner of the county. And we need organizations that do not currently have a registered lobbyist with Orange County.

That’s the only way it will work.

It’s unlikely to happen though.

The powerful connections are what have become familiar to elected officials in Orange County. Small businesses or middle class connections are unfamiliar and make a lot of our leaders nervous. This is because they ask a lot of questions about details and politicians don’t like details.

Let’s not assume the worst. Let’s hope that for once, these leaders actually take input from the ones who actually had to make the tough choices during this pandemic and you’ll find that we’ll recover and be much stronger in the end.

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