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Brown County Moving Ahead With Drafting Economic Development Plan

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Residents at the forum had the chance to give their suggestions on ways to enhance beatification, community cohesion and workforce attraction in the county. (Alex Eady, WTIU/WFIU News)

Brown County officials are taking steps to prepare a new economic strategic plan.

The Brown County Community Foundation and the Brown County Redevelopment Commission hosted a public forum Wednesday night for residents to weigh in and learn more about the plan.

Community Foundation CEO Maddison Miller says it’s their goal to find ways to enhance the community while highlighting the county’s existing assets.

"We’re in the process of putting together a plan that identifies quality of place, amenities, attributes, all sorts of things in Brown County that not only incentivize new employees and employers to move to the county but also incentivize those that currently live here to stay," Miller says.

The Foundation is working with a consulting firm to create the plan and is surveying the public to help identify community-wide needs.

Residents at Wednesday's forum had the chance to give their suggestions on ways to enhance beatification, community cohesion and workforce attraction in the county.

Resident Cliff Cressey says he hopes the county will prioritize safety and connectivity improvements.

"I’d mainly like to see LED lights used downtown and more ways to access the county’s walking trails," he says.

Miller says this forum is one of several efforts county officials are making to ensure local residents have input on the plan.

"We’ve been having multiple stakeholder engagement sessions from various community members so they can tell us what they need instead of the community foundation doing the opposite and driving the conversation," he says. 

The county will gather public input throughout the engagement phase and prioritize a list of potential projects.

The groups will present a final comprehensive plan in spring 2019.

Want to contact your legislators about an issue that matters to you? Find out how to contact your senators and member of Congress here.

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