Congress just finished up a District Work Period. This short break from voting in our Nation's Capital gave representatives a weeklong chance to hear directly from folks back home what is going on in their area.
This week, I wanted to share some tid-bits of where I went and what I heard first-hand from my different stops across East Alabama.
President Obama said recently "the private sector is doing fine." He later clarified his remarks to say the economy is not doing fine, which I think far more accurately describes the situation that most East Alabamians face these days.
As most folks can guess, nearly every concern boiled down to our weak economy.
I started off my week in Macon County, making courtesy visits with city and county leaders to check in on local projects. With Macon County unemployment over 10 percent, it is clear more jobs in the county is the top concern.
I also made several visits in Montgomery County, speaking first to the Chamber of Commerce and then at a "Congress on Your Corner" town hall event in Pike Road. Folks were concerned about the future of Maxwell Air Force Base -- and the jobs that could be lost if airplanes from the 908th Air Wing get moved. As a member of the Armed Services Committee, that's something we're trying to prevent.
I also visited Russell County and Ft. Benning. While there, I had the chance to talk with some of our soldiers at the new Warrior Transition Battalion, as well as visit Chattahoochee Valley Community College. Like other community colleges across East Alabama, CVCC helps provide students of all ages the skills needed to help find and retain good paying jobs in this very tough economy.
I also visited the community of Eastaboga in Calhoun County. There, Rainbow Omega is a non-profit that "provides residential and vocational programs for adults with disabilities." It is an amazing place, and one that provides jobs for many of our fellow citizens that may have difficulty finding work.
When I returned to D.C. this week, I held a live Tele-town Hall meeting, and heard what was on the minds of folks I didn't have the chance to visit with. Again, it was almost all about the future of our economy and getting our people back in good paying jobs.
Folks also shared concerns over what the outcome will be of the Supreme Court's decision on the health care law.
So there we have it. Our economy is in fact not doing fine. Congress needs to do what it can to help make things better. As always, please contact me on this or any issue by visiting my website at www.mike-rogers.house.gov, become a fan on Facebook at Congressman Mike D. Rogers, follow me on Twitter at RepMikeRogersAL and subscribe to my YouTube page at MikeRogersAL03.