Thursday, September 3, 2009

Engage Gwinnett Seeks Citizen Input

Engage Gwinnett, the Citizens Committee for the Future of Gwinnett County, is looking for 10 residents willing to spend time over the next six months listening to lots of information about county government and demographic and economic trends, sharing ideas and helping guide the Board of Commissioners actions’ as they make decisions about service levels and funding sources.

An initial meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 9, will explain the Engage Gwinnett committee process, gain public input and provide for the public self-selection of 10 committee representatives. The meeting is 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center auditorium, 75 Langley Drive in Lawrenceville.

Chairman Charles Bannister and the Board of Commissioners have partnered with the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce to launch an initiative to involve citizens in the County budget decision-making process. They are asking for 30 stakeholder groups to each appoint a citizen representative in addition to these 10 self-selected citizen leaders. Like most local governments around our region and our nation, Gwinnett must balance declining revenues with desired service levels,” said Bannister. “We need informed recommendations from people throughout our community.”

“We plan to strategically involve the community in the process of making informed recommendations about future service levels, funding needs and revenue resources,” said co-chair Bill McCargo, Director of Community Relations for Cisco Systems. “Together, we’ll identify what services the county should provide and at what level. We’ll also look at growth projections and infrastructure plans to help determine funding needs and potential revenue sources.”

The other co-chair is Mike Levengood, a partner in the McKenna, Long and Aldridge LLP law firm. “Every citizen in the county has a stake in the direction and the environment we’re creating for future generations,” said Levengood. “We’ll be holding several public forums during this citizen-led initiative to share and gain ideas from the community at large. This is an opportunity for many people to get involved before the decisions are made. It is a worthy community project and Gwinnett citizens deserve our best efforts.”

More information is available on the County website, www.gwinnettcounty.com
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