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Meetings to collect ideas for regional planning

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Staff report


Trained facilitators will conduct the first round of a series of community conversations today to discuss a shared regional-planning vision for the year 2025.

At 1 p.m. today, meetings will be at the New Castle, Pa., public library, 207 E. North St.; and at the Mercer County Courthouse, 120 S. Diamond St., Mercer, Pa.

At 5 p.m. today, a meeting will be at the Newport Branch of the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County at 3730 Market St.

At 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, another community conversation will be at the Columbiana Public Library, 332 N. Middle St., Columbiana.

The public meetings, designed to identify the strengths, challenges and possibilities facing the region, are being conducted by Power of 32 based on a format designed by AmericaSpeaks, a national leader in civic engagement efforts.

The Power of 32 refers to 32 counties in four states making up the region, which covers parts of eastern Ohio, southwestern Pennsylvania, northern West Virginia and western Maryland. The slogan is “32 counties, four states, one vision.”

The region includes Mahoning and Columbiana counties in Ohio and Mercer and Lawrence counties in Pennsylvania.

Comments expressed in the meetings will be compiled into a regional agenda rooted in the region’s values and defined by the economic, social, environmental and cultural interests most important to the region’s residents.

Major funding for the Power of 32 regional visioning initiative comes from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, the Heinz Endowments, the Grable Foundation, the Pittsburgh Foundation and the Richard King Mellon Foundation.

Community foundations from throughout the region are contributing to the effort, with additional public and private support.

For more information, visit