Decatur Diary | August 26, 2015

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Don’t Miss Saturday’s Kick-Off Conversation: All are welcome!

For the past nine months, Better Together’s organizing committee — called the Leadership Circle — has been working to convene a broad community conversation around the myriad differences — in culture, race, age, abilities, politics, economic resources, and more — that make us who we are.

This Saturday, August 29, from 10am-3pm, that conversation begins, as the now hundreds of registered Decatur residents meet in the gym of the Beacon Municipal Center and begin the process of finding common ground on challenging issues like fairness. Or inclusion. Or equity.

Won’t you be one of them? All are welcome and encouraged to attend. Registrations are still being accepted here so please make plans to join us.

Decatur Diary | July 31, 2015

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Let’s Go! Better Together participation opportunities announced

Decatur’s Better Together process is facilitating a substantive community conversation around the myriad differences — in culture, race, age, abilities, politics, economic resources, and more — that make us who we are. From it, we’ll craft a substantive Community Action Plan filled with policy goals and other recommendations for implementing Principle B of Decatur’s 2010 Strategic Plan: “Encourage a diverse and engaged community.”

And now we’ve got the details on how you can get involved!

Decatur Diary | July 21, 2015

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City Commission Green Lights Better Together Community Conversation: Details soon

In a unanimous vote at their July 20 meeting, Decatur city commissioners officially endorsed the recommendations of the Better Together Leadership Circle, clearing the way for a broad community process to cultivate a more just, welcoming, inclusive, equitable and compassionate experience for all who visit, live or work in the City of Decatur.

The culmination of the process will be the creation of a tangible Community Action Plan, spelling out specific recommendations for how the city or other resource organizations can, as directed in Principle B of the 2010 Strategic Plan, “encourage a diverse and engaged community…”

Decatur Diary | July 16, 2015

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Leadership Circle to Present Recommendations for Broad Community Conversation

Principle B of 2010’s Strategic Plan instructs city leadership to “Encourage a diverse and engaged community.” So for the past eight months, a small group of Decatur volunteers has been meeting around the questions raised by such an ambition: What kind of public process would help the city accomplish this goal? How might it be orchestrated? How might our community effectively explore the myriad differences — in culture, race, age, abilities, politics, or economic resources — that make us who we are?

On Monday, July 20, they’ll present their recommendations to city leaders in a public work session preceding the regularly scheduled commission meeting…

Decatur Diary | April 10, 2015

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Better Together: Meet the Leadership Circle

Because it’s something fundamentally rooted in our relationships with each other, and explores the necessary means by which we can transcend the barriers that divide us, the Better Together process is being orchestrated as a volunteer, citizen-led endeavor, with the participation and support of the city. A collection of unpaid Decatur residents representing a diverse cross-section of the community, together with our police chief and a handful of city employees, are serving as the organizing committee. We’re calling them the Leadership Circle

Decatur Diary | November 5, 2014

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Concluding UDO Draft Released: All set for commission consideration

The fact that our city leaders deferred decision on the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) during their meeting October 20 was no big surprise. As followers of this process know, it’s been an enormous undertaking. And while it’s true that the vast majority of the UDO is comprised of the same regulations we had before, just cleaned up and reorganized for easier and more efficient use, it still adds up to a considerable body of content — some new — that, not surprisingly, requires a considerable amount of review, discussion and consideration…

Decatur Diary | October 3, 2014

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UDO Draft Version 3: Final review and comment opportunities

In mid July, after almost 9 months of increasingly focused public meetings, the UDO process finally arrived at an initial draft — a draft subsequently subjected to 22 hours of open house discussion with residents and 4 exploratory topics for online consideration via Open City Hall. From that, together with additional comments that came in, a second, work-in-progress draft was released and presented for review by the city commission in two September work sessions

Decatur Diary | September 26, 2014

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Commission Work Sessions Clarify Final Steps for the UDO

Consider how far we’ve come: Eleven months and seven public drill-down meetings; pages and pages of resident comments submitted via Decatur Next; 22 hours of open house sessions in which residents came by, explored the draft-in-progress, asked questions of city staff, and provided comments; four Open City Hall exploratory topics; and two evenings of city commission work sessions, in which they reviewed the latest version of the draft…

Decatur Diary | August 22, 2014

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UDO Next: More opportunities to consider and comment

On Monday, July 21, a comprehensive draft of Decatur’s Unified Development Ordinance was released, followed by a full month of public review and comment — a process that kicked off with 22 hours of open house Q&A sessions and continued with a wealth of resident input submitted directly to the city. That input can be reviewed here, with many of the issues raised addressed in our Frequently Asked Questions