The Richmond County Economic Development Team is proposing a new project called Vision 2020 - A Strategic Plan for Richmond County.
According to Richmond Community College President Dale McInnis, the team is moving away from the concept of a civic index and moving towards strategic plans instead because they relate better to corporations. The team’s argument is that the county and the college are run like businesses and the strategic plan concept will reflect that.
“Businesses and companies look at this. Grant writing depends on this,” explained McInnis, who met with County Manager Rick Sago and Chairman of the County Board of Commissioners Kenneth Robinett on Monday. McInnis and Robinette are the co-chairs of this effort.
The strategic plan, which will cost $15,000, will consist of several phases. In the first phase, the county will work with the University of North Carolina - Charlotte Urban Institute to review past civic indexes to see what has been accomplished and what needs to be addressed, as well as what was recommended but not acted upon.
“The second phase is to collect and analyze data about Richmond County from two perspectives: a comparison of Richmond County with peer counties and a longitudinal analysis of critical indicators from the first strategic plan (1990 data) to the end of that plan and the beginning of the second plan (2000 data) to the current planning process (2010 data),” reads the Work Plan overview. “This analysis will help us understand how Richmond stacks up with peer counties and what has occurred on critical variables over a 20-year period that is informed by three census counts. The work group will advise the institute in selecting the peer counties. Our target to complete the data analysis is the end of July 2012.”
The third phase is the “refinement and prioritization of recommendations for Vision 2020,” said the overview. The recommendations will come as a result of reviewing the other data, and the target date for completion is the end of September.
“This is the process of identifying what it is that is of highest priority,” said McInnis.
Phase four is a public presentation of the findings of the study.
The cost of $15,000 is a fixed fee with 50 percent to be invoiced at the signing of the agreement and the remaining 50 percent due on or before November.
“It’s very healthy for our communities to do this,” said Robinette. “If you don’t have a plan, you’re not going to survive. We’re forward-thinking.”
— Staff writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 15, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.