We need to enable small businesses to thrive as they continue to be the backbone of our local economy.
Small businesses are employers; they employ beyond family, and they employ your neighbors and your friends.
We must review the process model other entities use to help small businesses get established. Let’s review the processes and time it takes to review projects.
Let’s work with those who can help capture ideas on how to help small green businesses and how to make sure we get the necessary support so they are in business for years to come. Economic Development professionals are the experts; let’s listen to what they have to say and work on establishing a common ground, but it has to be consistent with the values of our community. Yes, we are open for business, the ones that will respect and even enhance our environment as well as our quality of life.
The quality of life we have come to enjoy in Eugene is like no other in Oregon. From the air we breathe, the greenery, our trees to the way we build our homes and streets. We need to make sure our footprint leaves a responsible legacy for the next generation and that includes the use of materials that go to the garbage dump, in the ground water and how they affect our air quality.
Some industries are seeking to invest in our community, let’s make sure they know and respect our rules and regulations regarding the environment. The environment is our natural legacy and we are passing it on to our children and their children. We all need to be mindful of passing responsible and well informed laws that honor mother nature.
We must facilitate strong partnerships with other entities that have similar interests and/ needs. The Fire Departments at both the City of Eugene and City of Springfield is just one successful example. Where else can we find this kind of partnerships?
Let’s be more efficient (a lot more). Let’s be a lot more responsive and accountable in our spending and how we spend.
Delivering and securing access to health care.
Together, we can significantly reduce domestic abuse and child abuse
Transportation: let’s look at the true partners that have an interest in the footprint while providing service to those who need it the most:
Is transportation adequate? Let’s partner and/or find those entities that would complement the effort.
Where will we be in 20 years? What level of services do we need now and in the future?
Have we explored all options?
Enable and work with entities that provide services to our families in our community.
Collaboration for a mutual and reciprocal benefit. WHY?
- So we can help them help themselves
- Yes, it is also time to make sure each agency that receives public funding has a plan for a level of self-sufficiency: do they have any activities that generate income for their programs and services? If not, why not? Let’s get them the tools, and show them how to use them. Later, they will not only use those tools, they will teach others how to use them. It is a win-win situation and it benefits everyone.
- As we resume attracting different industries and initiatives that will be asking for tax incentives, such as the student housing downtown, yes, let’s make sure the City of Eugene works out a tax incentive so they can invest in our community and to provide a much needed housing project.
- At the same time, let’s ask that a percentage of their tax break be put in a Human Services, Library Services Fund, Public Safety, street repair. Social Services agencies can benefit greatly from this voluntary investment to these areas. The community benefits and the industry has an immediate community presence.
Let’s thoroughly explore the areas that might be available for responsible growth.
City Staff makes recommendations on well-researched initiatives, but we need to ask questions about the actual costs of each recommendation. When I become your city councilor, I will ask those questions.
The idea is to have housing affordability for new families and for those wanting to move into those growth areas. Let’s make sure the overall cost is consistent with our overall mission of growth and that there is a discussion about the environmental health aspects and impact of industrial proposals.
We need to highlight the often unspoken services that actually are needed with any expansion or adjustment to the Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) and areas of development: schools, adequate transportation, efficient and adequate fire and police services , and the actual costs to put in infrastructure (utilities, etc.)