Lisa Cook letter: Yes on intiative important for future
I am not native to North Dakota, but am proud to call it home. As an outsider I can truly appreciate what this wonderful state has to offer me and my family: clean air, safety and security, a decent cost of living, and most importantly, good peop...
I am not native to North Dakota, but am proud to call it home. As an outsider I can truly appreciate what this wonderful state has to offer me and my family: clean air, safety and security, a decent cost of living, and most importantly, good people and a sense of community.
I also recognize the challenge North Dakota residents, especially our young people, face as they traverse the job market, seeking to make a decent living with a fulfilling career, in a state that has much to offer, but often comes up short when compared to other states in offering a living wage. It is human nature for some young people to want to experience life as far from what they grew up knowing as possible. Some may move away and never return for more than a visit, while others may leave for a while, only to realize what their native state has to offer and happily return to raise their families and/or reconnect with their community.
But for those who truly recognize the gem of a state that they live in; who want to work and live close to their family and friends, and wish to utilize their talents in a decent paying job that takes advantage of their skills and work ethic, the proposed Measure 3, the Youth Initiative Measure may be the incentive these young people need to stay right here in North Dakota.
No, Measure 3 is not a cure-all. But it is something. And at the rate North Dakota college graduates are leaving the state -- 45,000 during the past decade -- we need to do something.
Yes, it will cost us something to keep young people here. But consider the cost to our tax base of the out-migration every year. Every talented, smart young person who leaves the state not only takes with them their potential income and the taxes paid on that income, but the potential for new businesses that will employ unknown numbers of people in the future.
The citizens of this state are intelligent, thoughtful people, who will have the chance to voice their opinion on Measure 3 in November. Let's hope, for the future of this great state, that they vote yes.