Tom Foreman | BIO
Reporter's Note: I’m still on the road, and still writing letters.
Dear Mr. President,
Have you been to Oklahoma City lately? I know you travel a lot, but I can’t recall if I have seen you here. I told you that I was headed this way yesterday, but I must admit I had no idea what I was in for.
Now, I made my first trip to Oklahoma City about 26 years ago, and back then it was just a relatively uninspiring western town. Tidy. Busy enough. I recall a big, abstract sculpture downtown and a great rock and roll radio station. (Called something like The Cat?) I heard the Dire Straits song “Money for Nothing,” for the first time as I passed through OKC. But beyond that, the town did not strike me as remarkable.
How times have changed.
For the past couple of decades, as the city has worked its way past that terrible bombing, the local government has used a voter approved, one cent sales tax to remake the place: a new ballpark, a new sports and concert arena, refurbished parks, schools, museums and along with those have come new offices, new hotels, new restaurants, and on and on it goes.
The acquisition of their NBA team, The Thunder, three years ago was a crowning achievement, and the excitement over being in the “big leagues” so to speak is something you can practically feel on the streets.
The results are everywhere. OKC enjoys one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country and a lower than average cost of living; sales tax revenues are soaring and the whole area is roaring back from the recession. On top of which, it is just seems like a really cool, fun place too be.
So if you get a chance in the near future, I think you really should stop by. Hey, for all that is going wrong in the country these days, it is awfully nice to spend some time where things are going right.
Hope your week is wrapping up well. Call if you get a moment.
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