engaging community

It should be easy for people to learn about and share ideas about their community in their day-to-day life. It seems that people find out about city services by reading the newspaper, visiting City Hall or the website. The problem with these is that the newspaper often doesn’t follow-up on issues or provide a full account of the facts, people often aren’t motivated to visit City Hall until/unless they are frustrated, and websites don’t offer the kind of fluid conversation that sometimes helps things make sense. So I’m hoping we will find better ways to talk to each other. These are a few of my ideas:

• expand the Leisure Guide to become a City Guide city newspaper or magazine;

• install community bulletin boards so that people can read City notices and post notices in public places;

• open-agenda town hall meetings for people to ask questions and learn about things they want to know more about;

• televised department reports to give City managers a chance to talk about things that are working well or show progress on past issues;

• televised question and answer periods would allow people watching at home to hear the answers to question period inquiries, which are currently normally provided in writing;

• stronger communication links with local community and government agencies so the City can ensure its services are well-coordinated or cross-promoted.

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