Sunday, February 8, 2009

Window Dressing With A .ORG Domain

Inquiring minds want to know why the town government would dedicate time and community effort, enable a web presence and even register domain and then systematically cancel each and every meeting ?
The GPAC Committee has met twice. As I have written in past blogs, this is a committee that is complete window dressing. Many of these "committee" members have shared frustration and dismay at being appointed to serve in a volunteer capacity, make the prerequisite time available only to be blown off for the past eight months. The following is directly from the town website:
General Information:
On February 4, 2008, the Town Council approved a preliminary work plan and schedule for the 2010 General Plan Update. Part of this process involved the development of a General Plan Update Advisory Committee, comprised of the existing 9-member General Plan Committee (GPC) with up to 10 "at-large" members to provide broad communtiy representation. The General Plan Update Advisory Committee would be a separate committee from the GPC whose sole function is to advise the Council on the General Plan Update process. On March 3, 2008, the Council adopted a resolution officially establishing the General Plan Update Advisory Committee.

Committee Role:
The responsibilities of the committee members are limited to the review of General Plan issues previously identified by Council and minor modifications of existing policies. Specifically, members of the the Committee will be asked to:
  • Attend regular meetings at least twice a month
  • Participate in Public Workshops
  • Identify outdated information in the existing General Plan
  • Address key topics as determined by the Town Council, including: the environment, recreation, and the needs of youth and seniors.
The Chair of the General Plan Committee shall serve as Chair of the General Plan Update Advisory Committee. The advisory committee will determine its schedule (it is anticipated that the committee will meet twice a month). Committee members are expected to regularly attend meetings and public workshops. However, it is understood that on occasion, a committee member may not be able to attend a meeting. Three absences in a calendar year may subject the member to expulsion from the advisory committee upon approval of the Council.

So why bother? Well if you care to question, I say go straight to the source. Pick up the phone and call our Community Services Director and get the straight story. If you are able to get a return phone call and actually end up with an explanation we would love to hear. The lingering question for me is: what happens when a committee member may not be able to attend a meeting but what is NOT understood is what if the meeting is unavailable to attend? That's a new paradigm shift.


Anonymous said...

I am one of the unlucky GPAC members. The town has treated the entire General Plan process like one big joke, except no one is laughing. Certainly not those of us wanting to contribute to the plan and process.

rcurrie said...

Where have I heard this before? Get a domain, then a plan. ring a bell? Worked out great for them...