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Shelby meets with community

By By ANNA M. LEE Assistant Editor
Yesterday, U. S. Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.) met with Escambia County residents at Atmore's Community Cup to discuss his views on policies and the concerns of the community.
The first topic Shelby spoke on was the state of the economy in Alabama. He mentioned the loss of textile jobs in the state due to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and how those losses have in a way been offset by Alabama's growing automobile industry with companies like Mercedes Benz, Hyundai, Honda and Toyota choosing Alabama communities for manufacturing.
Next, Shelby spoke about U.S. efforts in Iraq.
Finally, citing the nation's current conflict over how marriage should be defined, Shelby said this is a public policy debate that will be getting attention for some time to come, but his views are clear.
When Shelby opened the floor to comments, Escambia County Sheriff Grover Smith thanked him for his support of funding for the Drug Task Force and asked for his continued efforts in funding the program.
Community members in attendance addressed the senator questions about policy issues, including a proposed national Right to Work act, employer-employee relations, prison overcrowding and the budget deficit.
Shelby, who is campaigning for his fourth term, said that he has held nearly 1,200 town meetings like this one in his last 18 years of political service. He meets with each county in the state every year.