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Video on Burlington: Valuing community’s input and engagement in city hall’s decisions

Vol. 1 of “Little Ideas that can make a difference” video series

City Hall does a good job of asking community residents what they think. Where there’s room for improvement is incorporating that engagement and feedback into final decisions.

Burlington city hall believes it needs to educate residents on development and intensification
City hall believes residents need to be educated on things like development and intensification; instead the city’s attitude should be – “what can we learn from each other”

This video explores some of the attitude changes that need to take place to make that happen. We’ve got to move beyond dismissing residents as NIMBYs, special interests, or uneducated when you provide input that decision-makers may not want to hear. I’ve heard these sentiments too often, including in city meetings this past week.

We’ve got to value all engagement and input, and find ways to incorporate it.

Want to comment on this video or have an idea for how to make our city better? Please leave a comment below or send me an email at, and I’ll post it online.

Written by Marianne Meed Ward

I was inspired to seek public office because I believe, like so many of you, “I can do something about that” on the issues we face. As councilor, my role is to take a stand on what’s best for residents and go to bat for it. Pushback is inevitable from those who don’t have the community’s interests at heart. I will stand with you and for you, to achieve the best interests of our city, without caving to unacceptable compromise in the name of consensus.

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