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Baker: Dickinson is showing it can

Gaylon Baker

Recently released building permit data compiled by the North Dakota Association of Builders shows Dickinson leading the state of North Dakota in permit valuations year-to-date through July 2013 at more than $190 million.

As a community we need to thank the builders and investors that are showing tremendous confidence in our future.

This confidence does not happen by accident, and is not some sort of fluke. It comes as the result of an attitude that together we can accomplish those multiple steps forward that will make our future a bright one. All in all, Dickinson area folks, whether community leaders or the lowest on the totem pole, believe we collectively are doing more things right than wrong.

Certainly not everyone agrees on the details. What might be located where and how we are going to pay for it does matter.

People need to engage by making certain they stay informed about local issues and initiatives. They need to speak to others about local issues at community group meetings, churches, lunch rooms, in businesses and around the dinner table.

I believe much of the reason Dickinson has been chosen by many as a place to build is because those conversations are taking place and while there are always people affected, consensus does emerge.

Ask around and you can easily find stories of young families who had left years ago and are returning. People new to our area who never imagined they would like it here are buying houses and settling in.

New-to-us businesses are starting from scratch or moving in. Contrary to naysayer's predictions, we are going to continue positive trends.

Remember the quote, "Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you are right."

Dickinson can.

Baker is the executive vice president of the Stark County

Development Corp. Email him at