We would encourage the companies considering Mountain Home as the location for a 300-job meat packing plant to select this area as it's preferred location.
There are obviously some concerns that need to be worked out. Traffic, for example, at the Burger King intersection is already dangerous and the area should have been rebuilt -- with a light -- years ago. This would spur those needed improvements, which we believe should be required for the project.
In addition, there are potential odor issues, although 500 head of cattle is not particularly large. Still, the local dairy industry has shown that confined cattle operations can be operated efficiently and without posing an odor nuisance. The county's CAFO ordinances have worked. There is no reason to suppose this project wouldn't be equally efficient.
But most importantly, we would welcome 300 well-paying jobs to this community. That would be the kind of economic shot in the arm that would get things rolling again here.
Economically, we've been doing better than most communities in Idaho in recovering from the Great Recession, but this project could easily restore us to the solid growth we enjoyed prior to 2008.
Assuming that all major concerns are appropriately addressed, this could be a welcome project in these economically unsettled times.