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Letter from the CEO: Here’s a fishing story for you…

I’ve had the pleasure of going fishing in the Laguna Madre numerous times over the last few years. As most of you who fish know, sometimes you get lucky and sometimes you don’t. Most recently my two boys and I went with a friend and had a great time reeling in a bunch of trout. We maxed out by 8 a.m. So, what do you do when you max out on trout? Well, you go fish for something else, like some reds. These fish are a bit larger typically and also a bit harder to find, at least in my experience.  On this recent trip, we got lucky and caught a few good reds, but let me tell you about the one that got away!

This was a big boy! He was taking my line and pulling hard.  When he relaxed, I reeled. When he pulled, I let him have some line. Well, we did this for what seemed to be an eternity. The reality was that it was probably about 10 minutes. He was finally near the boat, and as suspected, he was a big one. It seemed as though he was tired and was ready to give up, and just as I was trying to guide him into the net, he turned and snapped my line.  Oh no! My heart sank. But then again, as all fishermen know, there will be days like this and there will be better days. But we had a great day! I just couldn’t forget that last one. Maybe I’ll catch him on my next trip, or his brother.

In economic development, we have times when we have that big fish on the line. I’ve had many times like that. But I’ve also had that big fish that just snaps that line and you end up with nothing.  Even the hook is gone. Here in Harlingen, we have had some great success with some big companies, but we have also had that success with smaller companies. If you have a lot of fish, you have plenty to eat. Right now, we have lots of small businesses that need our help. And we are helping as much as we can with programs such as HELP for Small Business. We are also helping them reach out to the SBA or local lenders for PPP loans. And so, even if we don’t get the big fish right now, we are extremely grateful and honored to be able to help the little fish come into our boat.

I hope everyone continues to work towards keeping our businesses open and profitable and their employees operating in a safe and sanitary manner. There are not a lot of big fish doing anything right now, but boy are those little fish keeping us busy.