At the last Port Clinton City Council meeting of 2016 held on Dec. 27, Resolution 16-10, a resolution supporting Voice to Vision, passed unanimously.
Voice to Vision is a citizen-led group that is creating a vision and plan for the City of Port Clinton based on input from citizens. The process used to solicit this information is based on Appreciative Inquiry which focuses on recognizing and building upon positive things that are already working.
Facilitators Will Hays and Jasmine Cupp spoke to City Council during a special presentation at the meeting.
“Robert Putnam has shined a light on our community, see it as good or bad. We can use this as motivation to help build and repair our community,” said Cupp.
Cupp also spoke of their being many other plans for the City that people put lots of time and energy into that didn’t necessarily reflect the voice of the community.
“Former plans include 50 or 100 people’s input,” said Cupp. “We don’t feel that is representative of the community.”
She also spoke of the different kind of needs that people have in the community. The socio-economic division that Putnam speaks of in his book, Our Kids, is very real in Port Clinton. The poverty level in the City is high, but there are also a large number of part-time residents who own second homes in the same community. Some people worry about how they will feed their kids and other people have needs that aren’t so basic. Cupp stated that both of these perspectives need to be heard in the community where previously it has just been the voices of people who have their basic needs met.
“Cities across the nation are already taking advantage of these changes. Cities like Sandusky, Vermillion, Huron and Cleveland are transforming themselves into vibrant, resilient, sustainable communities, with parks and urban farms, bike lanes and trails, public transportation and pedestrian malls, farmers' markets and street fairs, museums and public art, amphitheaters and community centers, reclaimed brownfields and restored downtowns,” said Hays.
“This is an opportunity, but every opportunity has a window. While we debate whether or not we want to create our own vision and plan jobs, money, and people are already moving into towns all around us, drawn by their creativity, vibrancy, opportunities and quality of life,” said Hays.
“That makes this a critical, pivotal moment in the history of our city,” said Hays. “Now is the time to revitalize our city and rebuild our community.”
Resolution 16-10 states:
A resolution of support for the creation of a community-wide vision for the purposes of implementing a comprehensive, long-term plan to promote community development in the City of Port Clinton and recognizing the citizen-led visioning and planning initiative Voice to Vision
Whereas, the Council of the City of Port Clinton, Ohio, is committed to building a more sustainable and resilient community, and encouraging citizen involvement within the community;
Whereas, the indispensable foundation of revitalizing our city and rebuilding our community is citizen engagement to develop a community-wide vision and comprehensive, long-term plan;
Whereas, Voice to Vision is a citizen led-initiative whose purpose is to facilitate the collaborative creation of a community-wide vision and comprehensive, long-term plan for Port Clinton;
Whereas, the support and engagement of the City of Port Clinton is critical to the success of the Voice to Vision initiative;
Whereas, such community development efforts can help foster economic development within the boundaries of the City of Port Clinton;
Now therefore be it resolved by the Council of the City of Port Clinton, Ottawa County, Ohio that:
Section 1. The City of Port Clinton supports the creation of a citizen-led, community-wide vision and implementation of a comprehensive, long-term plan for Port Clinton with Voice to Vision.
Section 2. The City of Port Clinton acknowledges the efforts of and opportunity presented by Voice to Vision in its commitment to the visioning and planning initiative for the community.
Section 3. The City of Port Clinton encourages city residents, community organizations and stakeholders, institutions and the business community to participate in the Voice to Vision initiative.
Section 4. This Council finds and determines that all formal actions of this Council and any of its Committees concerning and relating to the passage of this resolution were taken up in an open meeting of this Council, or Committees, and that all deliberations of this Council and any of its Committees that resulted in those formal actions were in meetings open to the public, in compliance with the law.
Section 5. This resolution shall take effect and be in force from and after the earliest period allowed by law.
The next Voice to Vision meeting will be held Thursday, Jan. 5, at 6:30 p.m. at the Ida Rupp Public Library where open interviewing will take place.
I am very proud of my hometown for responding in such a positive and creative way to the challenges that (as I showed in my 2016 book Our Kids) plague all American towns and cities coast to coast. I hope that other communities will be inspired by Port Clinton's example of civic leadership.Report
Bob Putnam PCHS '59