TEXARKANA (KTAL/KMSS) – The Texarkana Chamber of Commerce has launched a new campaign to market the area as military-friendly.
Chamber officials hope both veterans and the federal government will take notice of the area’s spirit of patriotism. “To demonstrate this community is 100% behind our military and wanting to keep the military presence in our region,” said Mike Malone, President of the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce.
Malone points to Red River Army Depot, which employs thousands of people in the area. That’s also where 900 were laid off last year because of no additional workload. Local leaders have been lobbying the federal government to designate the depot to be the place to repair the Army’s newest combat vehicle. “The military people in the Pentagon and Washington only want to put contracts out where they’re welcomed, and this demonstrates the welcome mat is out for them, and we appreciate their business,” said Malone.
Chamber officials want area businesses that offer discounts for military personnel to let them know.
Among the groups providing assistance is Texas A&M University-Texarkana. The school is taking part in a program called Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA). It offers up to $4,000 in financial assistance to eligible military spouses of active-duty service members pursuing a license, certification or degree in a portable career field. “This program allows spouses to follow their partners from state to state, base to base,” said Emily Newsome, TAMUT Extended Education and Community Development Program Coordinator.
School officials said military veterans make up about 11% of the student population at TAMUT.
Local leaders hope businesses investing in the community, along with good healthcare and low cost of living will soon elevate Texarkana to the top among America’s most patriotic areas.
If your business salutes active or retired military personnel, please contact the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce at (903) 792-7191.