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Economic improvement is part of the heartbeat of a community. Mount Pleasant and Titus County residents will get a glimpse into the future of the local economy at the 2015 State of the Economy Luncheon. Steve Murdock, Ph.D., an expert demographer,is the keynote speaker at the annual event set for Oct. 30.

"He uses a demographic model that projects our future economic outlook," Charlie Smith, executive director of the Mount Pleasant Economic Development Corporation.
Murdock is the founding director of the Hobby Center for the Study of Texas and holds the Allyn and Gladys Cline Chair in Sociology at Rice University. He is the former director of the U.S. Census Bureau and the former state demographer of Texas.

"He's an excellent speaker. I heard him speak on the topic of schools moving away from career training. That was one of the early seeds that encouraged me to pursue the Industrial Technology Center at the high school and the college," Smith said.

Dr. Murdock will offer statistics, trends and projections for the Mount Pleasant-Titus County area

"He'll give us an outline of how our future is being shaped today, and we'll get some ideas on things we can change to impact the future in a positive way," Smith said.

Smith will also speak at the conference. He will talk about local trends and give a summary of the current state of the economy in Titus County.

"I will look at new construction, new employment, unemployment numbers over the course of the year and new investment," Smith said. "I'll look at what's growing and what isn't and why it is important."

While the economy in the Northeast Texas region has not improved at the same pace as the rest of the state, there are several positive economic indicators.

"We've had some new major investments, new construction is picking up, and our sales tax revenue was up again," he said. "Virtually every industry is back up to greater than pre-recession employment."

Smith also pointed to significant investment in the SWEPCO power plant, numerous remodeling projects in the public and private sec- tors and business investment - including the construction of loft apartments - in Downtown Mount Pleasant.

"Our downtown effort is very strong. There is a lot of small business growth and construction in the downtown area, and that impacts our quality of life," he said. "All those things put more money back into the economy."

The MPEDC and the Mount Pleasant- Titus County Chamber of Commerce will host the luncheon at the Mount Pleasant Civic Center. It is the second year the two organizations have collab- orated on the event.

For ticket information, contact the

Chamber at 903-572-8567.


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