NEWBERRY – The City of Newberry will soon be collaborating with residents to develop a vision for the community's future - and a strategic plan to make that vision a reality. Community forums are the first step in this process.

The city will host two forums, one in-person and one virtual, to gather input and feedback from the community. The first forum, which is in person, will be held Saturday, May 8, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Easton Newberry Sports Complex, 24880 N.W. 16th Avenue, Newberry. Citizens who have not already submitted an RSVP are encouraged to attend the May 11 forum, which will be held virtually on Tuesday, May 11, 6 – 9 p.m. via Zoom. Additional information about connecting via Zoom will be provided on the City’s web page closer to the forum date.

These two forums will kick off the process and start conversations among residents about the future of Newberry. The discussion will focus on identifying those things about the community that residents wish to preserve, as well as the community’s hopes and aspirations for the future. The forum’s agenda will include a combination of small-group discussions and large-group workshop activities that aim to facilitate open conversation and the sharing of ideas.

Additional areas for input will include an online, anonymous resident survey that will be made available in the coming months. The project is expected to wrap up in the fall of 2021 with a formal document and presentation delivered to the City of Newberry City Commission.

The City has engaged the Florida Institute of Government (FIOG) to facilitate this project and to write and present that final strategic plan to the Commission. While the project team from the FIOG includes additional staff, the facilitators for this forum will be Mari Rains and Karen Allen from the FIOG at the University of Central Florida.

Press, city staff, and elected officials are welcome to attend these events, but will be encouraged to act largely as observers so that the process may progress without too much external input. More information on this project and its components is available at www.newberryfl.gov/administration/page/strategic-planning

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