I was recently asked if there was a special area of concentration I’d like to focus on. Yes, there is!
Communication: At a meeting with the Selectboard, Trustees, Planning Commissions, and ZBA, I stated that there needs to be more communication between all elected/appointed bodies. The Selectboard should meet on at least an annual basis with committees and the Planning Commission to align priorities, discuss updates on work initiatives, and to identify concerns. This communication should be supported with a detailed work plan outlining which bodies are responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed (a RACI matrix for those familiar with it). This will allow everyone involved to easily gauge progress, status, and understand who the stakeholders are for any given initiative or issue.
Committee Structure: I want to expand the committee structure. Committees should be a feeding mechanism for the Selectboard and Planning Commission. This is not only a great way to expand public engagement, but it also allows for focused work in specific areas. I’d also like to have a focused “Charter Change Committee” to handle the heavier work of drafting/recommending charter changes to the Selectboard. This would allow for more public involvement in the development of proposed updates while leveraging skills and experience from the members of our own community. It’s a win-win!
This is not only a great way to expand public engagement, but it also allows for more intense scrutiny on detailed issues while allowing the Selectboard and Planning Commission to focus on higher level issues. Each Selectboard member should have a ‘committee assignment’ and regularly report back to the full Selectboard on meetings, progress, and items needing attention. If we aren’t expanding the role residents play in doing the work, we run the risk of getting stale. We have a wealth of experience and interest in the community – we should be leveraging it!