The Hampshire Council of Governments contracted with The Springfield Institute to conduct a participatory, multi-media strategic planning process (very much our style). Since February, we have been learning about the Council (for example, did you know the Council serves municipalities and companies in all four western Mass counties?), and talking to everyone who’s got something to say about it. On Tuesday we released our assessment and recommendations. Tonight is our first public planning exercise. By the end of June, we will provide the Council with a practical plan for moving forward into a new era for the organization. The plan will reflect the perspectives and priorities of a very wide range of stakeholders, and it will include a structure for using it to guide the Council’s work on an ongoing basis.
We set up this blog to track the process and encourage participation: hcog.wordpress.com . There is plenty of eye candy there, including videos, survey results, and lots of coverage from the Springfield Republican and the Hampshire Gazette. It has been exciting to be a part of the reinvention of this large quasi-municipal agency, and we look forward to seeing the Council make big contributions to the region.