Visioning Committee’s report recommended for City Council approval

Saturday, January 19, 2008 | 2:50 p.m. CST; updated 11:44 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, July 16, 2008

COLUMBIA — The Sponsors Council unanimously recommended that the City Council adopt the Visioning Committee’s “Vision and Action Plan Final Report” after a presentation from the co-chairs of the committee. The Sponsors Council will now pass the plan to the council for consideration, although Mayor Darwin Hindman expects the council to quickly approve it.

“After all,” Hindman said, “when you have a thousand members of your community work together to come up with a report, we’re bound to feel like it’s a significant report and that we should accept it.”

Visioning Committee co-chairs M. Dianne Drainer and Jeffrey Williams told the Sponsors Council that they hope the report will remain an “active document” and will continue to address the concerns of the 13 focus groups that contributed to it.

Additionally, Drainer said, the Visioning Committee has a commitment to the 1,000 citizens involved in the report to “ask that the City Council accept this document in its entirety,” and to treat it as a long-term plan that the public can expect to be “implemented without change.”

Members of the Sponsors Council are Columbia College President Gerald Brouder, Columbia Public Schools Superintendent Phyllis Chase, MU Chancellor Brady Deaton, Stephens College President Wendy Libby, Boone County Presiding Commissioner Ken Pearson, Hindman and City Manager Bill Watkins.

The report represents the culmination of more than a year and a half of community discussions about goals for Columbia’s future.

Once the final plan goes into effect, Hindman said, the council’s initial focus will probably be on a few of the projects that can be finished within one or two years in an effort to “show a product from some of the recommendations.” Hindman said that economic development, as well as land use design and planning, are among the short er-term projects.

Furthermore, he said the council has already made progress in several areas.

“Some of the recommendations are going to be self-fulfilling because we have already been working on them,” Hindman said.

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