By John McPhee
Brockton Mayor David Inglis said the $48,000 spent to produce a strategic sustainability plan for the municipality is well worth it.
Known as Building a Better Brockton, or B3, the 55-page document is meant to be a guide for the next 25 years. Inglis said the B3 will “give the municipality direction” and promised that it will be used.
“I won’t allow it to sit on the shelf,” he said during an interview with The WHT. “Council won’t allow it and staff won’t either. It’s a living document.”
The plan’s vision statement states: “We are a proud rural community that is strengthened by a balance of social equity, culture, environmental integrity, and progressive economic development.”
Those four “pillars of sustainability” of the study are further broken into additional themes with objectives to reach over time.
The mayor said that while some of the goals may appear “a little weak” at first glance, “it’s a start”.
The document looks at what is being done today and what can or should be done in the future. “We do some things well and have to grow on them,” he said, noting one objective is to keep the downtown core vibrant.
“Some people want the status quo and don’t want any growth. You can’t stay the same, we need to continuously invest in the downtown core and support areas outside the valley,” the mayor said.
“You have to grow or we can’t keep the services you provide.”
Inglis admitted that public participation wasn’t as strong as he would have liked with sparse turnouts at most public meetings and only a couple of hundred comment cards submitted.
“We dug out as much as possible from the public,” he said. While it wasn’t as much as I would have liked, the feedback was good,” he said. “You go out and try your best.”
Inglis said council will set up definite times to review the plan and will work on achieving established goals. That’s why the plan will be important, he said.
“We can’t be a knee-jerk reaction community or council. We need plans and working with the public is important.