Weekend Buzz: County government sprints into 2015

This week is packed with important meetings that will impact Escambia County on various levels. New regulations for borrow pits and C&D landfills, RESTORE funds, storm water, three-year contract for county administrator and tourism will be discussed this week.

Escambia County will hold two community meetings to discuss the latest proposed drafts of Chapters 42 (Borrow Pits), 82 (Construction and Demolition Debris), and proposed allowable land-use changes and changes to the Escambia County Land Development Code.

The first one is this afternoon at 5:30 p.m. in commission chambers for pit and landfill owners. The second is Wednesday, January 7, 2015, at 5:30 p.m., at the Marie K. Young, Wedgewood Community Center, located at 6405 Wagner Road.

Also today the RESTORE Advisory Committee meets at 4 p.m. in Escambia County Central Office Complex, 3363 W. Park Place.

Tomorrow at 4 p.m., Storm Water Advisory Workshop begins with SWAT Team overview, followed by discussion on the Pensacola Bay Basin report, and concludes with small group sessions where the public is invited to comment. Pensacola Bay Center, 201 E. Gregory St.

Thursday the Escambia County Board of County Commissioners meet throughout the day in the Escambia County Board Chambers, 221 Palafox Place – a new three-year contract for County Administrator Jack Brown is in the agenda.

Agenda Review, 9 a.m.
Public Forum, 4:30 p.m.
Regular Board Meeting, 5:30 p.m.

Friday, Destination 2020 Summit takes place.

Press Release: Tourism in the Pensacola Bay Area is a $1.2B industry, accounting for more than 18,000 jobs and half a billion dollars in local annual earnings—only the military and health care sectors are larger. Visit Pensacola hopes to welcome a diverse cross-section of tourism industry business owners, political leaders and media to a strategic planning session on Jan. 9 as the organization begins the work of crafting a plan that will drive local tourism over the next five years. The summit is a precursor to six community dialog sessions held in Pensacola, Perdido Key and Pensacola Beach in Jan. and Feb.

The pressure for a strategic plan for tourism is especially great during a time when destinations routinely fight for market share. The Destination 2020 Summit marks the first step in creating a local tourism roadmap, and three of the industry’s leading authorities—Michael Gehrisch, president and CEO of Destination Marketing Association International; Bill Geist of Zeitgeist Consulting and Will Seccombe, president and CEO for Visit Florida—will be on hand to help. Information and insights gathered at the summit and community dialog sessions will form the basis for a final Destination 2020 plan that will be shared publicly on May 7, 2015.

Destination 2020 Summit
When: Friday, Jan. 9 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Where: Pensacola Museum of Commerce, 201 East Zaragoza Street
Other: Lunch will be provided; no charge to attend.
RSVPs: Will be taken through Jan. 5, seating is limited; please RSVP to kgardner@visitpensacola.com by Jan. 5.

On the city government side, there are few meetings this week. The Pensacola City Council will start next week. Its agenda will be release late Tuesday.