Neighborhood Association

Constant, continued communication between city staff and the neighborhood is one of the keys to success of any neighborhood plan.  A neighborhood watch has been formed to help deter crime.  

An active neighborhood association is important for a variety of reasons.  First, it is not logistically possible for city staff to communicate individually with every resident in the neighborhood.  Everyone has a different workday and evening schedule.   Here at the city, we try to send out direct mailings, but sometimes this is mistaken as junk mail or is simply forgotten after a few days.  However, neighborhood association members live in the area.  An active membership helps remind their neighbors of these important meetings and can help organize the agenda topics that are of greatest concern.

Second, a consensus of a group of people carries more weight with decision makers and elected officials than individual, second-hand testimony.  For example, if city staff goes to the City Commission and says, “We talked to some people in the neighborhood, a few are in the audience, and they would like …”; the commission may or may not decide to dedicate dollars or resources to the cause.  However, if staff and a neighborhood association representative show up and say, “We held an association meeting and a majority of the 50+ members agreed that we would like the commission to … and we have provided you with a copy of the association meeting minutes”; the commission is more likely to be comfortable enough to spend limited dollars and commit scarce resources to the cause.

Third, organizations of individuals are stronger than scattered activists.  Neighborhood watches are most successful when an organized group takes charge.  Other tasks are more effective as well.  Using the meeting notification example, if one group’s task was to send out emails, another group’s was to go door-to-door and hand out flyers and another groups was to make phone calls.  Most everyone would be reached more than one time versus the city just sending out a one-time notification.