If you have been following the regionalism issue, you are well aware that the meetings held by the unelected boards known as Regional Planning Commissions (charrettes and listening sessions) to discuss plans created by HUD, are “facilitated” by outside groups such as NH Listens. NH Listens is of course nothing more than a PR firm that works on behalf of the Carsey Institute, a liberal foundation based at UNH.
The goals of these outsiders and NGOs is to revisit issues you have already said NO to at town meeting, and to come between you and your town officials when things don’t go the government’s way. The trick is to get the town to sign agreements with HUD in exchange for federal tax dollars. The consequences are dire, because in doing so, you have just thrown away your rights on zoning and planning issues and must follow the dictates of the “master plan” that the RPC has helped the town create, incorporating HUD’s wishes.
Because of your activism and your questions about who they are and what they are doing and by whose authority, they have discovered that their facilitation gig is up and now are using ACTORS to teach their facilitators how to handle you.
In addition to attending these meetings, and the ensuing town meetings where the public will vote on the plans, we encourage you to attend these training sessions and become a facilitator yourself. The biggest complaint by the few real ‘citizen’ (not stakeholder) attendees that witnessed the Delphi technique was that their contrary information was often not recorded or considered in the published results. (Note that in all the sessions discussing Granite State Future, of the boasted 600+ participants statewide, only around 100 were bona fide taxpayers with no axe to grind or crony beneficiary.)
Here is the notice to attend:
“Many people feel alienated from public life, but the good news is that public officials have the power to address many of the frustrations driving people away from being engaged. In this interactive lab we will practice real-life scenarios, learn about best practices, and give public officials tools for creating meetings that deal with conflict in a healthy and professional manner. We will work with UNH Theatre professor David Kaye and his group, PowerPlay Interactive Development, to gain new insights, techniques, skills, and practice for the unexpected in public meetings. This workshop held in partnership with UNH Cooperative Extension. CEUs available. The $25 fee may be waived for students and those with financial need. Just let us know!
Tuesday, February 3, 2015
1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
46 Donovan Street
Thursday, February 12, 2015
4:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Manchester Health Department
1528 Elm Street
All the best,