Tuesday, February 24, 2015
Executive Committee Board of Directors- Special Meeting
San Bernardino Community College District
114 S. Del Rosa Drive
San Bernardino, CA 92408
Present: Deborah Barmack, Tom Brickley, Ken Coate, Scott Hofferber, Mark Kaenel, Lowell King, Sue McKee, John Mirau, Kristine Scott, Paul Shimoff, Phil Waller, and Ray Wolfe.
Announcements: 1) Inland Empire Economic Partnership’s 2015 State of the Region will be held on Thursday, March 19, 2015.
M/S/P: Minutes from December 2, 2014.
Mark Kaenel introduced Ron Loveridge, Director, Center for Sustainable Suburban Development, University of California Riverside.
Ron Loveridge discussed creating a new and positive narrative for the Riverside/San Bernardino Counties. Our two counties are the fastest growing areas in California. How do we see ourselves in 5, 10, 20 years? Rather than let others define who we are, it’s time we coordinate efforts and take charge of our direction and create a vision.
As stressed in the book The Metropolitan Revolution, the new emphasis is in cooperation. We must look to ourselves not the State or Federal government to resolve our problems. We must also present our region in a positive light. For too long both Riverside and San Bernardino have been dismissed and treated with harsh assessments by other Southern California areas. The judgments that have been made are inaccurate, tiresome and very difficult to combat. The overriding focus of the Inland region’s current narrative is on the region’s problems. We must build and lead with our strengths. To do this, we must collectively identify and embrace our assets and resources, and determine the future urban form which will serve the Inland Counties.
The relationship history for the two counties has been more of a competitive nature than of cooperation and cohesiveness. The time has come to set mutual goals and a combined vision for the future. The Riverside and San Bernardino Counties need to connect and work together in a more positive way. It is timely to begin framing the region’s future directions now or our future will be decided by fate; driven by the push & pull of steep social, technological, economic, environmental, and political forces.
The Press Enterprise recently called the Inland Empire a “unique, diverse and growing” area in Southern California. These are all positive and a good beginning for a new narrative vision of Inland Southern California’s future. Harnessing one of our greatest assets, diversity, will be one of the biggest challenges. Other challenges like regional fragmentation and the many separate agencies and jurisdictions doing their “own thing” and defending their space will be difficult to combat but coordination and cooperation can be achieved.
Ron Loveridge proposed two different paths to begin the process.
- Hire a third party like Urban Land Institute (ULI). They are a professional certified organization recognized for its expertise in sustainable regional development. They have panels/teams made up of the best, most respected experts in the country. The panel/team studies the city or region with data supplied by the client and submits a written report detailing their analysis and recommendations. The approximate cost for a three day study period is $60,000 or $120,000 for a five day study. Suggestions for funding a ULI study may include private donations, UCR, CalState, and both San Bernardino and Riverside Counties.
- Convene a network of regional leaders. The initial questions should be focused, limited and identified before the first conversation.
The Executive Committee members agreed that visioning is important and is a process that Inland Action will want to participate in. Additionally it was expressed that using an outside resource to guide the effort will likely have the best and most timely results.
More than sound bites or branding, we can create a master plan and build our own narrative with our many positive assets and resources.
A Q & A period followed.
Meeting adjourned at 8:30a.m.