Envision Dothan in Progress

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In the last three months, officials say a lot of progress has been made with the Envision Dothan Initiative.

Education, economic growth, regionalism, and quality of life; officials say each of these four areas outlined in Envision Dothan have all made progress.

Envision Coordinator, Dr. Thomas Harrison says, "In addition to those four task forces, we have our Chamber of Commerce committees, our problem work committees, aligned with the same goals: growing the economy, growing the community and we have special ADHOC committees that are dealing just with special interest.

One major step for the Education Task Force: a community-wide dialogue from students, parents, recent college graduates, and employers in the Wiregrass about ways to improve public education is now complete.

Changing the future of Dothan and Houston County Schools is a big issue in the Envision initiative. Another area that has also seen a lot of progress is regionalism. In the last three months, the task force has expanded and now includes eight counties in Southeast Alabama.

"The effective regionalism task force is probably the largest task force with the number of stakeholders they have," Harrison said.

Forty-eight stakeholders to be exact and the task force is expected to adopt a new marketing plan to focus on regional issues like tourism, water resources, and public transportation.

The economy task force is tackling two issues at this time. One is a present issue: poverty.

The second is a futuristic project: a comprehensive plan to address the economic needs of Dothan now and in the year 2020.

"A real accomplishment at this point is been that we've organized and in our organization, things we thought were going to be issues and are not issues because they're already been taken care of," Harrison said.

Dr. Harrison says the Envision Initiative is a complex problem solving approach and will require a lot of time and energy to build a better Dothan.

To stay up to date on the activities and progress of the Envision Initiative, you can visit the website at www.envisiondothan.com.

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