Mayor Brian Bigger has tabled a motion intended to transform the Greater Sudbury Development Corporation and to introduce an economic development cabinet.
According to the motion, council will assume responsibility as of July.
“That the City of Greater Sudbury notify the Greater Sudbury Community Development Corporation of its intention to assume full accountability for all economic development activities and investments as of July 1,” the motion reads. “That the (development corporation) be requested to pass the necessary motions and bylaws so that the members of city council become the members of the corporation and the board of directors for the (development corporation).”
In the motion, Bigger says council is best suited to tackle economic development.
“Council is best positioned to establish economic development programs and policies, to allocate staff and resources to maximize the chances of success, and to react quickly to emerging opportunities,” it states.
Bigger also asks “that the City of Greater Sudbury establish the Greater Sudbury Select Cabinet for Economic Development to provide advice on generating economic activity and that staff develop a proposed terms of reference and appropriate bylaws for consideration by council at its meeting of Aug. 13.”
Finally, Bigger wants to establish an economic development standing committee; he said staff members will be responsible for developing terms of reference and bylaws, which will be presented to council on Aug. 13.
“The economy and growth of our city is the top priority as we move into the future,” Bigger said Wednesday. “We need to grow, adapt and attract investment in our community. The ultimate responsibility of our city’s future rests on us, your elected council.
“Last night I tabled a motion to modernize the Greater Sudbury Development Corporation, which I look forward to discussing with council on June 25.”
In outlining his rationale, Bigger said the city has identified economic development and business growth as two of five strategic objectives in council’s draft strategic plan. He also said the city “wishes to enhance accountability and transparency for economic development activities and investments.”
Bigger also says his motion will encourage community engagement.
“The City of Greater Sudbury is interested in soliciting input from significant actors in our community’s economy and allowing for enhanced responsibility for the city’s directions and actions supporting economic expansion,” his motion indicates.
Council is the one chosen by voters to guide the city, Bigger said.
“You count on us for all financial and investment decisions regarding economic development. I am proposing that we would still have our staff working hard to fulfill these goals,” he said. “I deeply appreciate the efforts and dedication of all of our current board members and those who have served and continue to serve our city. My thinking is that the board has and will continue to have a significant impact on economic development through a new model, which would include a select cabinet on economic development. We would also still be working with our business partners in close collaboration to receive important economic development advice through the select cabinet.”
He argued his revised structure would enable the city to move more quickly “to emerging opportunities in the community. It would also be a move that would see a refreshed way of how our city grows and invests its citizens’ tax dollars for the future.”
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