Amherstburg launches community-based strategic planning

Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Windsor Star/Julie Kotsis

Amherstburg is following the lead of many other municipalities in developing a plan for the future that involves community input.

The town announced Friday the launch of a community-based strategic planning process that will form a five-year plan to help guide council’s decision making and provide direction to staff in terms of future priorities.

“Obviously other municipalities have done this regularly and … I can’t remember the last time Amherstburg did something like that,” said Mayor Aldo DiCarlo, who just completed the first year of his four-year term. “This is just municipal governance 101. What do we want to do? What do we need to do?

“We can’t just every year do a ‘what’s going on in the budget.’” DiCarlo said. “We need to obviously govern for five years, 10 years, 15 years down the road.”

And DiCarlo wants to hear from residents, community groups and business owners who will be able to participate in the development process through an on-line or paper survey and public meetings.

“Stakeholder engagement is absolutely key,” he said. “In general terms, when you’re looking at a community strategic plan, it’s got a lot less to do with what I want and everything to do with what the residents want and the businesses as well.

“This really is a where do you think Amherstburg should be in five years or so (question),” he said.

The online survey will be available in February through the town’s website at www.amherstburg.ca. Paper copies will be available at the town hall.

Public meetings are to be scheduled in March.

It is expected the strategic plan will be available on the municipal website in early summer.