Volunteers were to collect the surveys today.
By NANCY TULLIS
VINDICATOR SALEM BUREAU
COLUMBIANA -- City officials are pleased with the response so far to a community development survey, said Bob Belding, city building and zoning inspector.
Volunteers distributed the survey forms door to door to residents last week, and were to collect them in similar fashion today, Belding said.
He said many residents have returned the surveys to drop-off boxes placed at various businesses throughout the city and to city hall.
The survey is part of Project Good START (Small Town Assessment and Readiness Techniques), an effort aimed at helping Ohio communities attract and keep small business.
Details & aelig;: Belding leads a steering committee of city officials, business owners and citizens working with the Athens-based, nonprofit Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development, or COAD. Project Good START is funded by a U.S. Department of Agriculture grant.
He said COAD will use the survey to determine what residents and business owners believe are the community's needs, strengths and weaknesses.
A COAD representative and the steering committee will have a public forum at 7 p.m. June 6 to discuss the survey results and seek additional input, Belding said.
COAD representatives will then continue to assist city officials in forming and mobilizing groups to address the community's needs.
Belding said Columbiana's steering committee recently worked with Project Good START staff to develop the surveys, which query residents about shopping interests, health and professional services, preference for various community development ideas and civic projects, and ideas that could help the community take advantage of the expected changes in the region.
Earlier this month, the community achieved city status with a U.S. Census 2000 population of 5,635, a 13.6 percent increase over 1990 figures.