Henry Luke- Newsletter #35-COMMUNITY VISIONING RESULTS
ST. LUCIE, FL-On November 27, 2002, the St. Lucie County Commission approved an additional homestead exemption for people 65 and older who earn less than $21,259 a year, not including social security payments. The exemption will start at $5,000 next year and increase by $5,000 annually…until it reaches $25,000 in 2006. Thirty-seven of the 67 counties in Florida have adopted some type of senior property tax break.
RICHMOND, VA-Former Governor C. Douglas Wilder and former US Representative Thomas J. Bliley, Jr. are pushing a plan for Richmond to elect a "strong Mayor" at large to manage City Hall and be accountable to the voters. They are opposed by state Senator, Henry L. Marsh III.
LAKELAND, FL-The Polk County school system grade 9-12 graduation rate increased to 66.9% in 2002, compared to the state rate of 67.9% as reported by the State Department of Education. Voters approved annexation of another 444 acres with 1,650 people into the City of Lakeland. This is another advance to the Benchmark of 100,000 people by 2006.
The Lakeland Ledger
YAKIMA, WA-A Yakima student had a perfect score in the ACT assessment exam last June. David St. Hilarie was the only Washington student with a perfect score-out of 3,600. Only 43 of the approximately 376,000 students in the nation had a perfect score.
MOBILE, AL-Envision Mobile-Baldwin has "revisioned" after five years and developed a new name-"Envision Coastal Alabama." Read about the revision and other news from their September 2002 newsletter. http://www.mobilechamber.com/development/
CHARLOTTE, NC-The NBA will award Charlotte a new team that will sign a 25-year lease to play in a new arena. The team will begin playing in the Charlotte Coliseum for the 2004-2005 season. The city will complete a new arena by October 2005.
DALTON, GA-Dalton Utilities has an all fiber optic service available in Dalton, Whitfill and surrounding counties. Dalton Utilities uses the system to monitor and control over 10,000 information control points in five counties for real-time operations of their water, wastewater, natural gas and electric business sectors. Several large industrial customers and many smaller business customers use the system for rapid data transfer.
TYLER, TX-NETnet, a high-speed network providing advanced, enhanced and distance learning curriculum to 15 universities across a 50-county service area, was symbolically switched on Monday night by Lt. Gov. Bill Ratliff during a celebration held at The University of Texas Health Center at Tyler. (Nov. 12, 2002)
GWINNETT, GA-Gwinnett County Schools in November 2002 received an Aaa rating from Moody’s on the system’s outstanding bonds. The higher rating will save $1 million in interest. Only 13 other school systems in the US have the Aaa bond rating and Gwinnett is the largest.
HARRISBURG, PA-The Capital Region Economic Development Corporation (CREDC) received a $100,000 grant to assist in the Pennsylvania’s "Stay Invent the Future" initiative. CREDC will identify the region’s "best and brightest" young adults and convince them to stay and participate in the renaissance of the area.
RUTHERFORD, NC-The October NASA space shuttle launch was made possible by a manufacturer in Rutherford County. Cracked bearings were discovered on August 9 on the massive crawler transporter that carries the shuttle on a 3.7-mile journey from the hanger to the launch pad. NASA found that RA Torrington had supplied the original bearing in the early 1960’s. After finding the original plans, the Rutherford Torrington Plant built the new bearings and delivered them on time for the launch. http://www.thedigitalcourier.com/articles/2002/10/12/news/news01.txt
ST. JOHNS, FL-The Ponte Vedra Inn and Club Resort earned the coveted "Five Diamond" distinction. They join Amelia Island’s Ritz Carlton to give the First Coast two of seven "Five Diamond" resorts in Florida and nineteen total in the entire United States. http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/stories/112302/bus_11045500.shtml
The Northup Grumman plant in St. Augustine was named by Industry Week as one of the top 25 of "North America’s Best Plants 2002". The plant employs more than 1,100 building and upgrading planes for the military. http://www.staugustine.com/stories/120202/new_1157981.shtml
JACKSONVILLE, FL-The Arts Group’s worth is $70.4 million annually, according to the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville. In an economic impact study, the council surveyed 26 local arts organizations to compile data on employment, income and spending by the cultural community. Attendance at events held by the organizations was 1.3 million, which is much higher than the annual attendance for Jacksonville Jaguar football games. http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/stories/112102/bus_11024973.shtml
In a restructuring of the Shands Jacksonville Healthcare complex, the city will provide $70 million, Shands Healthcare will pay $50 million, the University of Florida-$5 million, the University of Florida College of Medicine-$15 million, and the state-$9 million. The city contracts with Shands to operate the hospital and pays $23.5 million a year to provide care to Jacksonville’ indigent patients.
Industry Week selected Medtronic Inc. Xomed as one of the ten 2002 North American winners in its "Best Manufacturing Plants" competition. Xomed is a technology company that manufactures healthcare products. http://www.industryweek.com/
SAGINAW, MI-Visit the Saginaw County Vision 2020 web site to review their "Racial Harmony Survey" results. http://www.scv2020.org/racialharmony.htm
CABARRUS, NC-Envision Cabarrus is beginning five new Strategic Alliances…respect & value for all people, character education, safety for all citizens, sense of community and accessible government. See September 2002 newsletter for reports on the first seven Alliances. http://www.lukevision.com/0902.htm
LUKEVISION- Celebrating 20 years of building Community Vision, we now have links to Visions or Strategic Plans for 49 communities or regions on our web site. Visit at http://www.lukevision.com/communities.htm
PAST COMMUNITY VISIONING REPORTS, the Community Strategic Planning Process, and client web sites can be reviewed from the menu below. Luke Planning, Inc. provides facilitation for Community Vision and Community Strategic Planning. Please forward this newsletter to anyone who may have an interest in these topics.
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