The OneMacon strategy is built on three pillars: Schools, Jobs and Place, with the understanding that a community with quality schools and abundant job opportunities creates a vibrant, desirable place to live and work. This five-year, comprehensive community and economic development strategic plan was developed in 2013 by a steering committee made up of more than 40 partners representing the entire Macon-Bibb community. Based on a target business analysis and marketing review, as well as public-driven input, the committee developed a community and economic development strategy along with implementation guidelines. The resulting OneMacon plan provided a way for economic and community development organizations to collaborate and remain focused on those actions that would best move our community forward.
The OneMacon Scorecard details the results of the current implementation guidelines. Among the statistics the OneMacon Scorecard highlights:
- Schools: According to the Bibb County School District, the Graduation Rate increased 18.1% from 2012-2017.
- Jobs: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment increased with 5,606 jobs added from 2013 to 2017.
- Place: According to the Macon-Bib County Tax Digest, the tax base reversed a nine percent decline and delivered a five percent increase from 2013 to 2018.
With the strength of partnership and culture of collaboration, OneMacon’s strategic plan has been put into daily action. As this scorecard indicates, recommendations that sought to strengthen our schools, employment opportunities and quality of life, unification is being achieved through three essential attributes: effective implementation, collaborative leadership and engaged residents. In addition, the branding of the #onemaconway has created an active dialogue defining the new culture of cooperation among those working to make our community
a better place.
“When OneMacon launched, Macon joined the ranks of cities like Austin, TX and Greenville, SC by developing our first comprehensive, community-wide five year-strategy to guide our efforts to improve prosperity,” said Kathryn Dennis, president of the Community Foundation of Central Georgia and co-chair of the OneMacon Steering Committee. “Rather than sit on a shelf, almost all recommendations in OneMacon have been implemented by collaborative partners working throughout Macon-Bibb. We are proud to report that those efforts have begun to have a positive impact as important metrics are starting to improve, as well as a sense of community collaboration in achieving those metrics is renewed.”
Now, this initial five-year plan is complete with community investments in education, initiated jobs and an instilled sense of place. And as the success metrics indicate, the community is ready for more. Currently, the OneMacon Steering Committee is building the second five-year community and economic development strategic plan, set to launch by Fall 2019.
“The truly successful communities never stop working to improve; the best places are working on their fourth or fifth five-year plan,” said Robbo Hatcher, co-chair of the OneMacon Steering Committee. “While we have successfully completed our first phase, it is important that we continue to work together to make Macon a better community. We are excited that OneMacon has already started to develop our next five-year plan and look forward to growing our community through deep listening, thoughtful planning and inclusive collaboration.”
“From business and education to healthcare, arts and culture, community development, public, private and non-profit sectors, our culture of collaboration, strengthened by unified a strategic plan, is moving Macon-Bibb forward like never before,” added Dennis.