By Sharon Daly
I've never understood the animosity some Forest Parkers have toward our neighbors to the east, Oak Park. It's weird, and rude, to use the nice neighbors we converse and work with as our private whipping boy. Er, or girl.
There is more than one way, or even two ways, to run a village. We do some things better than Oak Park, and they do some things better than Forest Park. They are jealous of our successful, if casual, efforts to attract business, and we are jealous of their ability to craft great policy, tho the process can be tedious.
Forest Park and Oak Park are linked in many ways, including our HUD funded Comprehensive Plan (CP) initiatives. Their process is ahead of ours by a few steps and it's instructive to see how they're doing. Let's take a peek…
Oak Park has already formed their steering committee. Check out the news item and especially the comments to see the challenges involved.
I'm with the argument for broader village appointments – parks, schools, library, etc. Indeed, Oak Park's village hall can be a formidable hog.
One item that came up in the comments is HUD's requirement that a % of the steering committee must be administrative. This didn't get sussed out but since HUD has the same stipulation for us, we'll probably hear the specifics at our steering committee open house next week (Wednesday, Feb 27, 5pm-8pm, Community Center.) FYI, commenter Ray Johnson is a village trustee.
Oak Park's CP consultants have already developed their CP website, which is darn impressive, especially the online questionnaire, which provides enough segmentation for the nerdiest of nerds. Seems you can click thru w/out answering the questions.
It's useful, efficient, and often inspirational to study others' work – emulate what you like, ignore what you don't. Oak Park had their 'get involved' village meeting last night…wonder how it turned out?
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