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Editorial: Building the tax base

“The county’s population has dropped.”

“Too many of our young people are moving out of the county in order to make a living.”

“We need better schools and cannot afford them.”

These are comments about Mathews County, practically word-for-word from recent candidate forums, but actually uttered 55 years ago.

In April 1968, a group of 15 men organized the nonprofit, stock-based Mathews Development Corporation, purchased 20 acres at Cobbs Creek, and established the Willow Oak Industrial Park. One of the organizers, Sherwood Sutton, expressed the reasons for this venture in the quotations above.

A few months later D&P Embroidery announced plans to locate there. Now StarFields LLC, the company has offered steady employment in Mathews County since it embroidered its first field of stars in 1970.

More companies located there in later years, adding to the employment base, and in 2009 the corporation, with all its land sold and its job done, disbanded.

We propose that a ...

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