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Economic development plan, wine at farmers market on Danville council agenda

Bringing back printed town newsletter, Osage Station Park update also on tap

The Danville Town Council is set to receive the latest update on the town's first-ever comprehensive economic development plan and weigh a proposal to allow a wine vendor at the weekend downtown farmers market during a study session Tuesday morning.

Jill Bergman, town economic development manager, will get the meeting started with a status report on the drafting process for the town's new five-year economic development plan, which is being led by Economic & Planning Systems, Inc.

The plan is a "policy document that sets the foundation for defining the town's ongoing role in maintaining the community's overall fiscal health," Bergman wrote in her staff report. "Rather than focusing on economic growth, the plan seeks to maintain Danville's fiscal health in a manner consistent with the town scale and character."

The latest draft update includes proposed strategies for achieving goals in four categories: fiscal drivers, small businesses and proprietors, economic development and marketing, and quality of place.

Town officials hope to have the final document ready for council consideration early next month, Bergman said.

Tuesday's study session is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. in the town offices at 510 La Gonda Way in Danville.

In other business

* Bergman will lead a discussion on a proposal from the Pacific Coast Farmers' Market Association to add an organic wine vendor to the Saturday farmers market in the Railroad Avenue municipal parking lot.

The council last month granted an extension to the association to continue operating the market, but after the approval, the association announced it wanted to feature an olive oil vendor that also wants to sell organic wines at the market.

Bergman has asked for council input on allowing the sale of organic wine at the market as well as potential sampling of the wines by patrons within the market boundaries.

* The council members will provide feedback on a report regarding their idea to bring back the print version of the town-issued newsletter.

The quarterly "Danville Today" newsletter used to be mailed across town but was phased into online-only in 2012, according to Nat Rojanasathira, assistant to the town manager.

But the council in February asked town staff to look at the feasibility of starting up the print newsletter again.

"While the digital version of the newsletter has been well-received (5,839 visits per month in 2015), the council expressed concern that the digital version falls well short of the readership penetration achieved by the former printed version," Rojanasathira said in his staff report.

Restarting and maintaining a print newsletter, as well as the online version, would increase staff time, but some of the work could be contracted out to a private company, according to Rojanasathira.

He estimated a 12-page quarterly newsletter would cost about $14,000 for graphic design services and $46,000 for printing and postage.

* The council will close its study session by receiving an update on work being done at Osage Station Park on Brookside Drive near Charlotte Wood Middle School.

Jed Johnson, maintenance services director, will talk about renovation of the children's play area, picnic area and memorial rose boxes on park's north end, as well as updates on regular maintenance activities and potential tree mitigation at Osage Station Park.

Town officials recommend removing 18 ash trees on the western part of the park near the south parking lot because of past and potential future damage to adjacent properties, he said in his staff report.

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