Monday, July 07, 2008

Why Participate When You Can Learn How to Participate?

Lolis Eric Elie's column today does us a great service by calling attention to the democratic participation framework that has transformed civic life in Portland, Oregon. Implementing a similar model here in New Orleans would represent one of the foremost achievements of my first Mayoral term.

Yet I can't help but snicker at Mr. Elie's plug for the Citizen Participation Summit occurring here in New Orleans on the evening of July 11th and all day July 12th. I would indeed love to hear what the "effective engagement solutions coordinator" from Portland's Office of Neighborhood Involvement has to say to further my understanding of how that city has codified citizen participation.

I'll just be doing something else on Thursday evening and Friday morning.

Later this week, the RSD is holding two separate meetings to discuss the millage renewal campaign (which I support) and the status of the facilities master plan (which I am extremely suspicious of). The meeting on Thursday evening at 6:30 PM at the Dryades YMCA on St. Philip and O.C. Haley will be open to the general public. The other meeting will be at 10:00 AM on Friday morning at the same location. I believe it is also open to the public, though the email I received requested an RSVP and was sent primarily to more active stakeholder groups and advocates.

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