The Gainesville Chamber's Small Business Task Force had their first meeting November 2013. Front Street's own Seth Lane was invited by the Chamber of Commerce to be part of the task force. Seth has written a summary of the first meeting and will continue to write updates on future meetings with Gainesville's Small Business Task Force.
By Seth Lane
In mid-November of last year, key administrators at the City of Gainesville, led by Mayor Ed Braddy, joined local business leaders at the first of four planned meetings of the Gainesville Small Business Task Force. I was honored to have been invited by the Chamber of Commerce to participate in this important discussion. The charge of this task force is simple; How can business leaders and City officials collectively work to improve the quality of life and business climate in Gainesville.
Without much preamble, the benefits of gathering leaders who are dedicated to the future success of Gainesville became very apparent. At the onset of the meeting, the City staff proudly discussed proactive changes that have already be enacted. Existing hurdles were openly discussed and the sincerity of all parties work toward common goals was apparent and worthy of acknowledgment.
Since the meeting, further progress has been made. The City of Gainesville launched a new website, aiming to be more accessible to those served and offering more transparency to traditionally bureaucratic processes. The City is beta-testing a 5 day work week for select division, to ensure private sector business who depend on responsiveness from City staff can keep their businesses productive.
Above all, the focus of both groups needs to be shifting the perception that Gainesville is a difficult place to do business. Perception is reality and we must all work together to promote a more accurate message. These efforts are not bound by the city limits. This is a regional push to foster economic growth while retaining the community character we all hold so dear.
I look forward to future meetings of the task force and will report along the way.
Here is the related story from the Gainesville Sun:
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