Visioning Lincoln County in 2059

The Future is BRIGHT for Lincoln County
Much of my work as county commissioner is focused on the present and the immediate future. But I do like to spend time thinking far out into the future when I have the opportunity. What, for example, will the Lincoln County of 2059 look like?

I chose 2059 for a couple of reasons. That’s Oregon’s bicentennial year, and if I’m lucky enough, it will be the year I turn 100. (No, I don’t expect to still be in office then, but I’d love to be looking back on a good life with the ability to say I made a contribution to making the world a better place.)

A lot of the work I’ve been part of is laying the foundation for what Lincoln County will look like almost 40 years from now. I think we’ll still have many jobs based on fishing, timber and tourism, but I see a significantly expanded economic base. For one thing, ocean science is already a fourth leg of our economy and it will continue to grow. It’s an amazing thing that in a country where so many rural hospitals have been shuttered, we have opened two brand-new facilities. We already have a high proportion of senior citizens in our population, and that number will continue to grow. Although people are living longer, healthier lives, most of us will need ongoing care at some point in our lives, and that translates to jobs.

I’m also excited about our potential as a research and development site for clean energy, especially wave and wind energy. Our society is increasingly driving toward clean and renewable energy sources, and the potential of the ocean is limitless. We’ve worked with Oregon State University to support the deployment of what will be the first and only ocean energy test site that will be directly connected to the shoreside power grid.

We’re going to accomplish all of this while maintaining the quality of life that brings people here in the first place. Together, we can accomplish anything.

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