I’d like to continue to talk about what is happening on our Economic Development Commission. Last time, I touched on the website project the Commission is working on as well as my idea of analyzing the actual reasons (based on fact) as to why some businesses have chosen not to come to Torrington. By looking at and understanding those reasons, we can then work towards a solution.
I have heard that people believe businesses will not come to Torrington because the population numbers are too small, or that there isn’t enough money in the area to support certain businesses. I’ve been guilty of believing this too, so I figured I should do some research into it. This perception isn’t the reality; according to the Census Bureau’s 2011 American Community Survey, there are 188,789 people living in Litchfield County! That’s 188,789 people that could potentially come to shop or work in Torrington, all within a 20 minute drive.
According to that same Census report, the average annual household income in Torrington was $67,245 (median being $49,903) and over 20% of the population makes $100,000 and up per year. Even more impressive though is that the average annual household income in all of Litchfield County is much higher at $94,185 (median being $69,097) and over 32% of the population makes $100,000 and up per year.
Now there are certainly many people that do not make this amount (me included!), and I’m not ignoring that Torrington does in fact suffer from a high poverty level. But if a business is hesitant to expand into Torrington because they think it isn’t “big enough” or “wealthy” enough, we need to show them that isn’t the case. More businesses equal more jobs for everyone.
Economic Development Commission