At its monthly meeting on July 8, the New Gloucester Economic Development Committee continued to focus on refining a set of Economic Development Goals to share with the Comprehensive Plan Update Committee. During the past year, the Committee has gathered input during a series of public forums, has examined the results of surveys of residents and businesses, and has met with the Gray-New Gloucester Economic Development Committee.
Based on the information gathered, the committee has identified some draft goals and tactics, briefly summarized below. More details of the recommendations will be reviewed at the Committee’s August meeting and will be sent to the Comprehensive Plan Update Committee for review and inclusion in the draft comprehensive plan. Preliminary goals discussed by the Committee are as follows:
- Collaborate with and participate in regional planning efforts
- Increase the visibility of the town and local businesses in the town
- Develop and promote the town’s sense of place and rural assets
- Tie economic development activity with community development
- Consider the tax base
- Ensure that zoned business areas are safe and suitable for the types of businesses that the town wants in those areas
- Improve communication: Between town committees and departments; Between the town and residents/local businesses; Between local businesses and residents
- Support and encourage small businesses
In addition to the above goals, the Committee is working on specific strategies to meet those goals. The committee welcomes input at its monthly meetings. Other items under discussion are the development of a map for the town identifying local businesses, recreational areas and other points of interest; and an updated inventory of businesses, including those involved in the creative arts, farm/agriculture, recreation, tourism, and other aspects of the economy.
The next meeting is on August 12th at 6 p.m. in the Community Building. There are currently opportunities for new members to join the team.