A proactive strategy, which encourages the public to work with council to provide and enhance Rimbey’s business sector has been given the green light by council.
Council passed the bylaw, which endorses the formation of a committee focusing on helping the business sector of Rimbey flourish, at its Nov. 10 meeting.
Now that the bylaw is approved, council can start advertising for interested people to join the committee, said CAO Lucien Cloutier.
“This bylaw gives council a great deal of latitude in appointing members to the committee,” said CAO Lucien Cloutier. “While guidance is provided for the composition of the committee, there isn’t a specific number of appointees allocated for various stakeholders. This is intentional to provide council with the greatest degree of flexibility in appointing members.”
Forming the committee is the first of several suggestions presented in Rimbey Business Sector Sustainability Strategy which was also approved by council at its meeting.
Undertaking an area redevelopment plan through the joint efforts of a professional planning consultant, the advisory committee and Rimbey businesses is one of the suggestions. The plan is to include provisions for maximizing parking, signage and traffic lighting for the purpose of enhancing public safety.
Establishing an annual allotment in the capital budget for the next five years for business sector improvements is also an important component of the sustainability strategy.
“The amount to allocate and the nature of the improvements will be established over time through the work of the committee in concert with council,” said Cloutier in his executive summary.
Funding may come from government grant programs, local improvement levies, increasing municipal taxes, direct allocation from reserves, corporate sponsorship, support from community groups or a combination of this funding.
The strategy also includes exploring the creation of a registered Rimbey business sector Facebook group and other social networking opportunities such as a website to provide enhanced exposure to Rimbey businesses.
“Such a group would have to be moderated to ensure relevance and mitigate liability. Rules would need to be established,” said Cloutier.
A rebranding activity for Rimbey is also in the future plans.
“While such an activity addresses a need for Rimbey as a whole, the business sector, as a significant community stakeholder, stands to benefit from the results of this process.