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Triad elected officials discuss 2022 goals

Elected officials across the Triad explain what their goals are for their cities and towns in 2022.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — As the world rang in 2022, the COVID-19 pandemic still looms in the background but some elected officials across the Triad have “hopes” for the new year which, in many cities, includes economic development. 

Greensboro council member at large Marikay Abuzuaiter said one of her goals for the city in 2022 is to keep the momentum going when it comes to job growth.

“Our economic development...which has taken years to try to this point. We have Publix with over a thousand new jobs. We have the Megasite coming. We have the possibility of another economic development venture near the airport,” Abuzuaiter said.  

City of Winston-Salem mayor Allen Joines has the same goal.

“In that regard, we’ve really had great job growth over the past year and my resolution is to continue pushing for that. We’ve been at like 3.5/3.6% and we really want to lead the southeast metro areas in terms of new job growth and I think we have a great opportunity to do that,” Joines said. 

Another big hope for many cities and towns is public safety.

"The police department has a number of initiatives that they started last year and will continue on. Things like violent crimes, task force, we have a new gunshot detection system that is now up and function and looking to potentially expand that," he said.

A new social program will be starting in Winston-Salem this year, called CURE. Joines explained the program is to help young people, particularly gang members, to try and get them out of gangs and provide healthy alternatives to address issues they may face. 

Pleasant Garden is another town with some New Year goals. Mayor Dean Maddox said he's excited for some upgrades around the area including the community center building, community picnic shelter area, and a lot more.

“The strengths and relationships we have with the Guilford county officials, local officials but also the state officials...we are going to have opportunities in 2022 that we will capitalize on together as a team but when we do have challenges and we will have challenges, you just don’t know quite where they will come from, we will overcome those as well so we are actually looking forward to a good 2022,” Maddox said. 

As far as COVID-19, local mayors agree the virus isn’t going away but if more people are vaccinated and have their COVID-19 booster shot, towns and cities can remain open and lives can continue on.