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Envision Madison hosts town hall meetings

Published On: Apr 30 2014 11:12:16 PM CDT

Envision Madison, an initiative for planning Madison County's future, is in the midst of four town hall meetings.

REXBURG, Idaho -

Envision Madison, an initiative for planning Madison County's future, is in the midst of four town hall meetings.

The meetings are meant for residents to share their thoughts on four scenarios of future life in Madison County. Envision Madison is made up of three task forces: recreation, jobs and BYU-Idaho/community relations.

So far about 800 county residents have contributed to the plan, but co-chairs Gary Archibald and Lori Woodland said more is better.

"Twenty-five years out, where do we want to be in Rexburg and Madison County?" asked Archibald.

He said these meetings need more public input to answer that question. Wednesday night meetings were held in Sugar City and at BYU-Idaho. Meetings will also be held at noon Thursday at the Romance theater and at 7 p.m. at Madison Jr. High.

With ideas for additional recreational facilities, water use, roadways etc., Archibald admits some are skeptical the plan is claiming land or taking control.

"We don't do that," said Archibald. "We have no government authority, it's simply an opportunity for people to say, 'What can we do to make our community better?'"

After more public input, Envision Madison's stakeholder committee will develop a vision for Madison County. That vision plan can then be used by BYU-I, Madison Memorial Hospital, schools, the county and the cities within it.

"It's to hold the public officials accountable," said Woodland. "That they follow what the public wants to happen here in the county."

Beginning May 2, an online poll will be available for residents to provide more input. More information on Envision Madison can be found at www.envisionmadison.com.

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