At the Dunwoody Chamber of Commerce’s inaugural fall gala, the Senator told a group of about 150 business professionals and community leaders that the city’s real estate industry was the exception to a struggling housing market nationwide.
“[Dunwoody’s] got good schools. It’s got a good location. It’s got a vibrant chamber of commerce,” he said. “If you had to pick a place to live, Dunwoody’s the place to pick to live.”
Isakson, a business leader in the real estate industry prior to his political career, delivered the keynote address at the gala held Oct. 22 at Dunwoody Terraces South. He told gala guests the nation’s housing is poised to recover but it is going to be a long recovery.
“What we need to do is return to quality underwriting [for real estate loans] like we had in the ‘80s and the ‘90s and the ‘70s and the ‘60s [and to] make loans to people who actually do have jobs … make loans to people who are prepared to pay the loans back,” he said.
Isakson also spoke about other factors plaguing the nation’s economy. He said the government needs to reform its tax code so that businesses do not send their operations and their dollars overseas.
“America’s the toughest of all in terms of [corporate] taxation,” he said. “We need to … not punish businesses for expanding. We need to empower American business and enterprise so it stays home.”
Isakson added the government needs to manage its spending and readjust programs such as Medicare and Social Security to make it work for the 21st century. He said when Social Security was established, it was not as common for people to live past age 65 and a smaller percentage of people claimed Social Security benefits back then.
“We’re getting older and wiser,” Isakson said. “We’re living longer. The formulas that were created when those laws were passed don’t work anymore.”
Debbie Fuse, executive director of the Dunwoody chamber, said the group chose Isakson to speak at the gala because he knows the importance of chambers of commerce.
“He understands the partnership between chambers and cities and economic development,” she said.
Isakson praised the work of the local chamber and community, calling Dunwoody “one of the prototypical communities in the 21st century in Georgia.”
He said the chamber represents what America is all about — free enterprise, growth and opportunity.