Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Resolutions

It’s the new year. Time to take down the Christmas tree, pull the Christmas lights down, clean up the New Year’s confetti, get used to writing “2013” instead of “2012” and make some resolutions. Here are some suggestions if you need some help picking one for the new year:

Resolution Number One: Clean up Clinton.

I’ve never fully understood litter. Why would you throw a food wrapper or a cup out the window? Why would you let your trash line city streets? It’s more than just unsightly and unsanitary; it makes a bad impression on new businesses, new residents, and potential economic development prospects. Nothing good comes from lining our streets with trash. The Laurens County Chamber of Commerce, and volunteers like Harry Agnew, Will Gore, Russ Emerson, and church and scout groups have been actively fighting a war against litter during 2012. Every couple of month’s they take to the streets with the goal of cleaning up Clinton, and Laurens County, because no one wants to live in a trash dump. They are fighting a war on garbage, and they need your help. Take just two hours this year and join these volunteers as they fight to clean up Clinton. For more information, contact the Chamber of Commerce by calling 833-2716

Resolution Number Two: Spend some money.

Spend some money in our city this year. Take advantage of the generous discounts that come from using Laurens County Bucks. Support local jobs, local vendors, and local businesses this year by resolving to make many of your purchases locally. The money you spend here stays here, because it becomes someone’s paycheck, purchases supplies form other local businesses, or supports local charities.

Resolution Number Three: Be energy efficient.

If you reduce your energy consumption, then you will reduce your costs associated with paying your electric bill. You will be surprised how much you can save simply by changing a few of your habits. Switch to energy efficient light bulbs, unplug chargers when they are not in use, and realize that many electronics use energy even when they are off. A simple programmable thermostat that reduces your energy consumption when you are not at home will go a long way towards reducing your energy bills.

Resolution Number Four: Volunteer.

Your neighbors need you to contribute to our community. Find some time this year to help out at the United Way or organizations like United Ministries. Be part of your church’s local mission efforts. Read to your child’s class. A community is a reflection of the effort that its citizens put forth, so take some time to make someone’s life better or easier this year by giving some of your time to help any one of a number of worthy causes in our community. If you really want to make a difference, join the ranks of our fire division as a volunteer. We’ll provide the training, you provide the time, and we will both work together to protect the lives and property of our neighbors.

Resolution Number Five: Attend a city council meeting.

On the first Monday of each month at 6 PM, the City Council meets on the second floor of the M.S. Bailey Municipal Center. The meetings are open to the public. I encourage you to attend at least one meeting this year and see what is happening in your city. You can even speak to council and make your opinions about the issues known.

Resolution Number Six: Take pride in your city.

Finally, take pride in your town. Since 1852 this city has stood the test of time not because of its streets, police cars, or institutions. It has weathered the storms of time because of the quality of the people who live here. This year, keep your yard a little cleaner, work to address issues in your city that you feel should be changed, cheer on a local team, and be proud of where you are from and where you live. It’s the pride you take in the aspects of our community that you are interested in that makes our city a great place to live, work, and do business.