By definition, gratitude means “the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.”
It’s hard to believe another Thanksgiving is just a few days from now. How did 365 days go so quickly? Many of us will be traveling to spend time with family and friends; following traditions that bring back memories; getting to sit down to an amazing meal; or, cheering on our favorite team on the gridiron. Whatever your plans are, it is a time for reflection and gratitude.
As we continue to navigate and adjust to our post-COVID environment, I am thankful for the resiliency of our Jefferson County community. We have, and continue, to navigate some tough times and face difficult decisions but throughout it all we have risen to the occasion.
One example of our community coming together, along with elected officials, was to determine the best use of the $113 million in ARPA funds Jefferson County received in 2022 to benefit and help others in need and who may not share the advantages that others do. Based on community feedback and in consultation with housing advocates, we will conduct a comprehensive Housing Strategy Plan for Jefferson County. This plan will help identify next steps regarding affordable and workforce housing options. Additionally, investments will address needs for public health and behavioral health including funding for a food grant program addressing food insecurity and disruption to local food supply and to commemorate Veterans Day, the reopening of the Veterans Housing Unit within the jail.
I want to also express my thanks to the business owners and community partners who make Jefferson County strong and have stepped up, when they themselves have faced challenges, to meet the needs of our community and citizens. I know it has not always been easy to keep those doors open but thank you for your acts of kindness and service to our friends, neighbors and families.
As we move further to the end of 2022, that same spirit of thankfulness should carry on with us. Each day presents new gifts as well as challenges. With each new moment there lies a potential for happiness, whether that be your own or someone else’s. Be a person that someone says “thank you” for on November 24, because you certainly have people to thank. As John F. Kennedy once said, “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”
Andy Commissioner Kerr can be reached at [email protected] or (303) 271-8503.
To learn more about the Jefferson County Commissioners, visit our website. The Board of County Commissioners’ public hearings are held on most Tuesdays at 8:00 a.m. and we invite you to join us for public comment. Click here for details.