Daleville is growing with new business
A new business is coming to the City of Daleville, and Mayor Jayme Stayton said the city is being noticed by many more.Stayton said he has been reaching out to different businesses since his first day of office."What I wanted people to know is, the first day I took office, I started making phone calls to different restaurants, grocery stores – just any and everybody from California to Maine and in between," he said. "Daleville is the diamond in the rough of the Wiregrass."He said he tries to find possible businesses to contact while he travels. He also contacts businesses that are found in the Wiregrass area.The city's newest business, Daylight Donuts, was one local business that decided to move to Daleville after about seven months of discussions.Stayton said he helped them find their current location, and the business should be open soon after some remodeling efforts are completed inside.He said he is also currently talking with other businesses, including restaurants, hotels and grocery stores, about coming to the city in the future, though no final decisions have been made.With economic development comes research, Stayton said. He said businesses do research on the city, just as cities research possible businesses."They'll come into your city," he said. "They won't tell you, but they will try the competition out. They'll look for themselves to see if what you're telling them is true."He said businesses also ask for traffic counts and other information about the local population and more."This is what people do," Stayton said. "They look up on the computer or they pull up our traffic count, and they say, 'Okay. Daleville has 17,000 cars coming through here. It says you have to have 18,000-20,0000 cars, or we're not even going to look your way.'"He said he then pushes to show businesses the "big picture" of Daleville. The "big picture" combined with the city's location next to Fort Rucker, he said, has made businesses start to pay attention to Daleville.Local laws and regulations can also affect a business' decision to come to Daleville.The city council recently approved an amendment to an ordinance that restricted the consumption of alcohol on a business' premises based on its distance from a school building."It (made) it impossible for any new business to come in that wants to serve alcohol," he said.The ordinance previously restricted consumption of alcohol on premises to 500 feet from any school building, Stayton said."We have had potential businesses, within the last year, come in, and I've been able to speak with them," he said. "That's one of the things that has come up."We're in talks with another restaurant, and this ordinance will help that restaurant and others come and look our way."Though a new business has come to Daleville and other potential businesses may come in the future, Stayton said his main goal is to bring industry to the city."I want to get jobs here, like textile (jobs)," he said. "Not everybody can or wants to work on a helicopter. Most of our jobs are aviation background."He said he wants to make jobs available so that the "regular citizen of Daleville can go to work.""I want it in Daleville so they can get there easily," he said. "I'm trying to get jobs here and make it be convenient for our people."He said he also wants it to be convenient for those in surrounding areas, such as Level Plains or Clayhatchee.Stayton said bringing a major business or industry to the city is never an easy process."It's not going to happen overnight to get a big corporation in here or a big textile plant," he said. "It just doesn't happen overnight, but we're moving in the right direction. Before, nobody knew which direction to go. We do now."Previously, economic development for Daleville was a responsibility of Ozark Dale County Economic Development Corporation. The city voted to leave the economic development corporation in February.Since that time, Stayton said he, along with the city's Code Enforcement Officer Wayne Stripling, have been working to have the city's available properties listed and reaching out to other businesses."My job is to take care of the city and take care of the people that are in this city," Stayton said. "I love Daleville and I'm going to fight for Daleville, so I don't want someone who doesn't love Daleville as much as I do out here trying to fight for Daleville because they're not going to do it with the passion that I do.""I brought (Wayne Stripling) on the second day I was mayor, and I said, 'Hey look, I need your help because I don't know the ordinances,'" he said. "'I don't know (the answers to) these questions these people are asking.'"He said Stripling has been a great help with economic development efforts, calling him a "wizard" on knowing relevant information about the city.Stayton also said he is not only reaching out to businesses to bring to the city, but he is also contacting groups to provide entertainment and fun for the citizens.While he is working to bring more businesses to Daleville, he said is grateful to the current business owners of the city."Thank you for being here because if it wasn't for you, we wouldn't have anything," he said. "As the mayor, I am extremely grateful your business is here, and I want to do whatever we can to make sure your business stays here."Stayton said he has worked hard and will continue to work hard to bring business to the City of Possibilities."Daleville is growing," he said. "There is a lot behind the scenes that people don't see. I'm working hard, and I'm not giving up."