During this troublesome economic downturn, we have made a concerted effort to get our community moving forward again. That effort has evolved into several converging and interlinked projects. This complexity has, in turn, produced an enormous amount of work and pressure on your community leaders to keep each project moving synergistically forward with each of the other interlinked projects.
A few of our larger projects include: the Blue Ridge pipeline, economic development, tourism/events, distance telemedicine and a four-year university campus here in Payson.
With so many moving pieces, our efforts to keep the community reasonably informed and apprised of our progress have become increasingly more challenging.
For example, some of the information recently conveyed resulted in a misconception that the Rim Country Educational Alliance (RCEA, the Separate Legal Entity that will enter into all contracts and legal agreements for the campus), was not supportive of the community fund-raising efforts, nor supportive of the negotiating efforts that have gone on over these last few months.
The message that should have been conveyed is that the RCEA is absolutely committed to moving this university project forward and will continue to press on steadfastly to make it happen.
The other part of the message is that the RCEA’s success will be enhanced and made easier if there is a strong showing of community support, both emotionally and financially. The words may not have come out right, but the message is the same — we are all committed to make this university happen in Payson.
We express regret if, in the interest of expressing commitment and enthusiasm, that message was mis-communicated.
In terms of our campaign for supporting the “the middle mile” of the university project, we take an approach that is both “friends raising” and “funds raising.” If you are unable to contribute financially, we hope that you will be a friend by contributing your support and enthusiasm. If you have a desire and capability to contribute, a group of committed volunteers have designed a number of ways in which to share information with you, meet with you to discuss your interests, and share the benefits of your potential contribution.
It is not our desire to dilute donations to the many worthy charities that you and our community support. It is our desire, on the other hand, to enable community members to become a part of accomplishing an undertaking that is so vital to the future of our community, doing so as a friend and/or a donor.
We have an experienced SLE board and an incredibly talented and committed group of community volunteers who are very capable of advancing this project with enthusiasm and vision.
We will continue to find ways to reach out to Rim Country residents with timely and accurate information.
As the baton is being handed off to those who drive the final process, all of us in Rim Country can feel good about rallying around a winning team.
Be assured that we all will be right there with you helping them “get’r done!”
Mike Vogel, chairman, Rim Country Educational Alliance
Judie Lyon, chairwoman, A University Campus in Payson Volunteer Committee
Richard Johnson, chairman, A University Campus in Payson Fund Raising Committee
Kenny Evans, volunteer