HENRY COUNTY, Va. – The sound of construction and cars driving down the road are just a few sounds that you may be hearing more of now in Henry County as more people are working.
According to the latest unemployment data for the county, the unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percent in September to 4.7 percent.
That's the lowest unemployment rate in a decade and Henry County Administrator Tim Hall believes the news will be a huge morale booster.
"The immediate impact is people just feel better about themselves because they have a purpose. They have somewhere to go every day to make a contribution," Hall said.
More people working means the county's tax base is increasing as people pay taxes on the money they earn.
An increased tax base could get the county one step closer to making I-73 a reality
Perhaps most important though is what the low unemployment says about the county's efforts to plan for the future.
"The long range plan is working. We'll continue to work it and at the end of the day we're going to be where we need to be," Hall emphasized.
Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce president Lisa Fultz said the area as a whole is growing.
"We've had several businesses that have contacted us to let us know that they are expanding and have needs for additional staffing or training," Fultz said.
Hall said he believes opportunities for employment are increasing and he is optimistic that the unemployment rate will continue to decrease.