Liner putting together countywide focus group for comprehensive strategic plan

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    By Josh Troy 

    Clarksdale Advocate 

    Jacorious Liner, of JLINE Enterprise, is putting together a countywide focus group as part of his 20-year comprehensive strategic plan for Coahoma County. Liner provided an update during the Coahoma County Board of Supervisors meeting on Monday.

    “Thank you again for the opportunity to engage in high-level abstract research to really create a county we all can believe in and really move this county forward,” he said.

    Liner said he has been working on the public participation part of the strategic plan, where he interviewed community leaders such as Crossroads Economic Partnership Executive Director Jon Levingston and Visit Clarksdale Executive Director Bubba O’Keefe.

    “I was all over the county,” Liner said. “Of course, you all are coming in relatively soon. What I was trying to ascertain is trying to get a pulse on the current climate relative to economic development, what are the assets, what are we currently doing, what are the challenges, strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities, and where the threats lie.”

    Liner said he also spent three hours with representatives from the North Delta Planning & Development District. The countywide focus group is the next step.

    “Ultimately, we want to hear from the citizens,” Liner said. “What do you like about Coahoma County?”

    Liner said he is looking to hear about issues such as workforce development in Coahoma County.

    “What would convince you to continue to stay here, raise your family here, and have all your children attend school here?” he said.

    Liner said he will be looking at land and buildings available in Coahoma County. He added that he will be looking at the skills, abilities, and talents of the local population in an effort to keep residents in Coahoma County.

    “We do know that depopulation is a serious issue, not only in Coahoma County but across the region,” he said.

    Liner said he plans to establish legislative, planning, and allocations committees for the countywide focus group. He added that the legislative committee would develop priorities.

    Liner said he also plans to establish a policy advisory council that will be diverse and discuss all facets of the community.

    Liner also said a public information office will be created to help with community engagement. He mentioned the possibility of creating a blog with updates on what is happening in the county. He added that users could subscribe to the blog through their email accounts.

    “So now, we don’t have to worry about people engaging in the process,” Liner said. “They know what’s happening. You don’t want to try to convince people to engage. You want to meet them where they are.”

    Liner talked about reimagining Coahoma County.

    “For us to truly thrust into the 21st Century, we’ve got to reimagine,” he said.

    The supervisors expressed their support for the direction Liner is taking with the comprehensive strategic plan.

    “It gets me energized,” said District 2 Supervisor Pat Davis. “I think you have some great ideas. I appreciate you spending time on it.”

    District 1 Supervisor Paul Pearson encouraged Liner to get the input of tourists.

    Pearson said the Viking Cruise docks in Rosedale and comes to Clarksdale every other Saturday.

    “They’ve got about an hour to an hour and a half to walk around Clarksdale,” Pearson said. “What’s amazing to me is they see so much potential. They see things that we can’t see.”

    Board President Johnny Newson, who represents District 4, agreed.

    “You must involve the community in decisions that are affecting them rather than the board making the decisions,” he said.

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