Aragon coun­cil re­treat com­ing this week­end

The Standard Journal - - LOCAL - By Kevin Myrick SJ Edi­tor

The Aragon City Coun­cil is set to meet this week­end for a called re­treat meet­ing that will give the group a chance to get to know one an­other and set fu­ture pri­or­i­ties.

Mayor Garry Bald­win said the re­treat will start at 9 a.m. on Satur­day at city hall and is set to cover a num­ber of top­ics, chief among them a chance for “ev­ery­one to get to know one an­other.”

“We’ve not re­ally had a chance to sit down and fig­ure out what we should be do­ing in the fu­ture, and tak­ing a cue from Polk County I felt we should have a re­treat to talk,” Bald­win said.

He added the agenda in­cludes a chance for dis­cus­sion as well over what the pri­or­i­ties should be for an up­date to the Spe­cial Pur­pose, Lo­cal Op­tion Sales Tax that might be­com­ing in the near fu­ture, and what their wish list of what the coun­cil might like to see achieved through SPLOST spend­ing pri­or­i­ties.

The April 7 agenda will also give coun­cil mem­bers a chance to share their per­sonal vi­sion for the city, a first round of in­put to be given on the com­ing fis­cal year bud­get, sta­tus of cur­rent SPLOST spend­ing and an up­date to the per­son­nel pol­icy.

What might be most im­por­tant of all for Bald­win and the coun­cil is ways the city can pro­mote it­self, seek growth, and an­swer an im­por­tant ques­tion. What would a prop­erty owner view as a rea­son to be part of the city? And ad­di­tion­ally, what are the sell­ing points for pay­ing city taxes?

It is a ques­tion one neigh­bor­hood has sought to an­swer in the past when they sub­mit­ted a re­quest to leave the city’s bor­ders and re­join the un­in­cor­po­rated county.

A past group of coun­cil mem­bers de­nied the re­quest to move for­ward, cit­ing at the time that if the Fret­ties­burg neigh­bor­hood were al­lowed to go, many more would seek to leave.

Yet it left the ques­tion unan­swered at the time, and one that still needs to be given a clear re­sponse.

Any­one want­ing to hear those thoughts and more dur­ing the re­treat can take part at city hall in the open work ses­sion. It will not be held as a for­mal meet­ing, so no de­ci­sions will be made.

It will give city of­fi­cials the chance to craft a for­ward vi­sion, and work to­ward goals over the com­ing years through 2026.

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