On Saturday there was a Hampton Roads Civic Engagement Summit held in Suffolk. Over 180 people from throughout the region participated.
Shortly after arriving on Saturday morning I met fellow blogger Missy Schmidt. During the main sessions I sat with CCO President Sam Reid and CCO Previous President Chandler Scarborough. State Senator John Miller came in and sat in front of us.
The meeting started with audio comments by Bob O'Neill, followed by the introduction of the Summit Moderator: Suzette Denslow, Chief of Staff for Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones. The Key Presentation was given by Chris Gates, Executive Director of Philanthropy for Active Civic Engagement (PACE). Dr. Quentin Kidd did a Presentation on the Batten Surveys. That was followed by breakout groups. Everyone then reconvened for a final round of voting.
A large contingent from the Virginia Beach Taxpayers Alliance (VBTA) showed up: Dean, Moss, Greenmun, et al. Virginia Beach's embarrassment became the region's as they engage in their usual antics. One observer from Virginia Beach tried to pass it off: the hijinx were mild "for them."
The VBTAers were thrown for a loss when Keynote Speaker Gates commented on the history of referenda. The original intent of referenda was not for day-to-day government, but simply to release pressure when things got very bad.
On the Batten Surveys, the two top priorities that both the elite and general population agreed on were the economy and transportation.
It will be interesting what becomes the use of Saturday's input and results.