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News Story
Updated: 04/09/2014 08:00:02AM

City economic development summit Saturday

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By BRIAN ACKLEY

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Fort Meade’s future is going to get a close look Saturday when a number of local leaders gather at Mosaic’s Streamsong Resort.

The gathering is being dubbed as an “economic summit” designed to take a look at where the city is heading.

Florida Public Utilities, which late last year closed on the purchase of the city’s gas utility system, pledged $20,000 a year for the next five years to be used toward economic development opportunities in the city, and to help host and sponsor an economic summit to help identify issues and needs to help Fort Meade grow.

The meeting is expected to start around 8:30 a.m. and run until the early afternoon, and is expected to include local elected and city leaders, business people and other key stakeholders.

City Planner April Brown, who has been the primary mover in bringing the event to life, said about 35 people have already indicated they plan on attending.

“I’m very pleased with the response,” she said. “We’ve got a very good mix of people.”

Fort Meade Chamber of Commerce Director Priscilla Perry said the event will hopefully serve as the catalyst for moving the city forward.

“I go back to what (Mayor) Bob Elliott said, that this is a year for change,” Perry said. “It’s not so much bricks and mortar right away, but the attitude of our city fathers and the community.”

There are several ongoing initiatives that are also focusing on a similar topic, including one initiate, paid for by a $15,000 state grant, that is focusing on how to best revitalize the city’s business district along West Broadway and Charleston Avenue.

“I think this gathering will get us really moving in the right direction, and help us to walk the walk instead of just talking the talk,” Perry added.


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