Since the Oshkosh Common Council took receipt of the Prager Team’s assessment of the community’s economic development efforts, there’s been questions from all corners of the city about how any effort to establish an independent, transparent, accountable organization would progress.
The council has taken the lead over the course of two workshops this month. On Jan. 2, they found broad consensus for a two-part plan. Part one: Dig into the details of how the council can make a significant financial contribution to an independent organization yet preserve accountability for their investment. Part two: Bring stakeholders together, find out who supports the recommendations laid out in the Prager Team’s study and establish a small committee of public, private and nonprofit stakeholders to oversee the creation and development of the organization.
Part one was accomplished on Jan. 15 when councilors picked Adam Prager’s brain about next steps and the challenges they face ahead.
Part two will be accomplished on Tuesday, Jan. 22, when stakeholders gather in a closed door meeting that the press has not exactly been invited to.
It’s more like Mayor Burk Tower and City Manager Mark Rohloff bluntly told us they won’t disclose where the meeting will be held or the exact time.
Streetwise, though, is not one to take ‘No’ for an answer on something like this, though. If it comes to it, we’d have no problem making them kick us out. So if anyone out there happens to know when and where all the major community leaders plan to meet on Tuesday, we’d certainly love to hear from you.
It’s disappointing that, after so much talk of the need to preserve accountability and transparency in this potential new economic development entity, city officials declined to disclose the details of the meeting so Oshkosh Area residents can know what happened. In the interest of full disclosure, this does not have to be publicly noticed since a quorum of councilors will not be in attendance, so city staff has no legal responsibility to give us the details.
This is a key meeting, that watershed moment when the community’s public, private, educational and nonprofit entities might take a monumental step toward a revamp of economic development efforts that has probably been overdue since, at least, the early 2000s. As such, it’d be nice to be able to share what we expect to be a very positive response to the city’s plan to kick-start the revamp process with the community these organizations aim to serve.
Let’s see what happens or if anyone e-mails me at email@example.com with some details.