ALPHARETTA, Ga. – Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle made a tour of leading businesses in North Fulton May 20 with Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce President Brandon Beach, and he liked what he saw.
After the tour, Cagle met with North Fulton political and business leaders at the GNFCC headquarters to talk and to listen. Often sounding like a coach at halftime giving a pep talk, he gave a short talk on Georgia’s strong points for economic development.
Beach had praise for Cagle, introducing him as a man who was about “jobs, jobs, jobs,” as Georgia prepares itself to be a leader in the economic recovery.
He credited Cagle as being instrumental in securing the $25 million for the new technical college that is going to be built in Alpharetta and be a conduit to supplying a high-tech workforce for Georgia and North Fulton in particular.
Cagle in turn said he was impressed with the way North Fulton is poised to be a spear point in the recovery, having prepared to be a leader in the technology revolution starting 20 years ago when it was laying fiber-optic cable on a grand scale. That is the lifeblood for moving information and was a major reason for raising the office buildings that skirt Ga. 400 today.
“We are the economic development capital of the South; no one else compares,” Cagle said. “There are so many things going on. We see people all over North Fulton risking their capital and creating jobs. This is the hotspot for economic development, no question.”
While the government is not in the job-creation business, Cagle did say it was the government’s job to create the environment that will induce the private sector to be successful.
“Together, we are hitting on all cylinders,” he said.
He said Georgia leads the world in app designs for phones. Georgia is third in the U.S. in the number of Forbes 500 companies, and that will only grow.
“In the next decade, we will see more billionaires created than there are now. But it is a changing world and technology is driving it,” he said.
Cagle pointed out that Home Depot had $60 billion in revenues last year while Amazon had $40 billion. Yet the telling point is Amazon does it with no brick-and-mortar stores, while Home Depot uses hundreds of stores worldwide, each demanding fully stocked inventory.
With greater education, K-12, colleges and technical schools, Georgia will be a leader in growth for the coming years, Cagle said.