On the CRC’s changes

Published 11:09 am Thursday, May 25, 2017

It seems to me that change is going to be an often-used word by those serving on the Commonwealth Regional Council (CRC) for the next several months.

Just days after the resignation of Executive Director Mary Hickman, who’d been with the CRC and the former Piedmont Planning Commission for 27 years, CRC Treasurer and Buffalo District Supervisor C.R. “Bob” Timmons Jr. said a “new direction” of the council is that it wants to be the go-to organization that is known in the community for grant writing and grant management services.

Additionally, he pointed to an anticipated $68,000 budget deficit that is looming over the CRC in its upcoming fiscal year budget.

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I know that Hickman worked hard for the Piedmont Planning Commission and the Commonwealth Regional Council and its membership localities — both past and present. I also believe that Timmons and his fellow members on the council have the absolute best interests of the CRC and its member localities at heart.

This new and different direction Timmons cites is one that I surely hope will bolster the CRC, bringing more opportunities to the Heart of Virginia and its member localities, and, in turn, improving the lives of those who live here.

At one time, the CRC had a robust membership, including the Town of Farmville, Longwood University and Cumberland County. A few years ago, the three entities either left or decided not to renew their membership with the CRC.

Change is constant, and, in many ways, is good. It’s good to take a fresh look at what you’re doing and how you can do it better and more efficiently.

“The board is in the process of changing that direction (with) new directives, new personnel and to become better known as a service organization rather than a quasi-government organization that’s sitting over here waiting for someone to knock on the door,” Timmons said.

While making these changes, it’s my hope the CRC will keep the people of the Heart of Virginia in mind, thinking of how they could be affected before making any decision that could be viewed as rash.

JORDAN MILES is managing editor of The Farmville Herald and Farmville Newsmedia LLC. His email address is Jordan.Miles@FarmvilleHerald.com.