New Kent Charles City Chronicle

News for New Kent County and Charles City County, Virginia | December 15, 2018

Editorial: Finally, a name-brand store plans to make a home in Charles City

By Andre Jones | October 3, 2018 7:56 am

In one of my earlier editorials, I wrote about a name-brand business taking a chance in Charles City by establishing a business. After a rezoning of an area of land from agricultural to business was approved by Charles City leaders early Thursday morning, a Dollar General may be constructed on property near the courthouse area. And all I can say is that it’s about time.

For several years, Charles City has been far behind in economical growth and development. As a life-long citizen, there have been many opportunities in the past that has presented itself for commercial businesses. While we do enjoy the smaller family-owned stores and businesses, there are some things that need to change. Change can be scary, but often it is necessary for survival.

There is often debate in both Charles City and New Kent about businesses opening in the area and localities. In New Kent, many residents deem the county as the home of truck stops, fast foot restaurants, dollar stores, and Food Lions. Even with the new proposal in Charles City of a Dollar General, people are complaining that there are many dollar stores within driving distance of county residents in nearby localities that they can shop in.

But the thing some citizens do not realize is that shopping in other jurisdictions hurts the local community. Let’s take the example of the proposed Dollar General in Charles City. If one is constructed, citizens can shop at that one while supporting the local community and bring revenue to the county instead of traveling across the borders to another county. When a person spends money in a different city or county, they are supporting that county and not their own.

There have been comments and complaints that people move to an area to get away from the growth, stores, shopping areas, etc. While that is understandable, those same residents have to know that it’s up to local governments to be self-sufficient to operate. Leaning solely on taxpayer money only harms the county by stunting growth and development. Government leaders raise taxes when there aren’t enough businesses to cover the ever-increasing costs for local operation.

New Kent took a chance on a small McDonald’s business more than 20 years ago in Bottoms Bridge and it has grown exponentially to become the home of both businesses and residents. Let’s be patient to see if the proposed Dollar General in Charles City can do the same thing.