On Monday, August 1, 2022 Forest City Borough Council voted positively on an
ordinance accepting the Forest City Outdoor Town Action Team as an advisory board to their Community and Economic Development sector under Councilwoman Amy Bean. The Action Team was originally formed in 2021 to participate in a program called “Outdoor Towns”, which was made possible by a grant through the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and matched by Forest City Borough Council and the Rail Trail Council of NEPA. Recognition by Forest City Borough Council as an advisory board was a crucial structural step to allow the Action Team to investigate projects and resources that can help to address meaningful changes and progress identified by our community as important, through the Outdoor Towns Initiative.
Following their formal designation by Borough Council on August 1st, an organizational meeting was held on Thursday, August 4, 2022 at Elegante’s Pizzeria for the Forest City Outdoor Town Action Team (FCOTAT). The board for the FCOTAT has been identified as follows: Katie Zefran – Chairperson, Deb McNamara – Co-Chairperson, Erin Debish – Secretary, Suzanne Atcavage – Grant Team Leader, and Juliann Doyle – Marketing Team Leader. President of Forest City Borough Council Robert Lesjack attended the meeting, providing direction and insight for organizational structure, meeting management and the role of this team.
Discussions on job descriptions, grant opportunities, the Sunshine Act, collaborating with other FC Borough entities and organizations, the Erie Street Trailhead Welcome Arch, and the Center Street Park Project were included in the evening’s discussion. The group spent a significant amount of time reviewing their role and responsibilities. A key component that they will work to emphasize is their place within the Borough Council and community structure. The FCOTAT are not intending to be the designated leaders for the many projects and visions that were identified in the Outdoor Towns Action Plan. Rather, the FCOTAT is dedicated to collaborative efforts with Forest City Borough and it’s entities, other Forest City based organizations including but not limited to Rail Trail Council of NEPA, the Greater Forest City Business Alliance, Forest City Historical Society, Greater Forest City Industries, NEPA Sno-Trails, and Forest City Regional School District. The FCOTAT intends to serve the community as a “work horse” to identify and pursue grant opportunities, collaborate and assist with projects and promote a united vision among our many community based organizations.
The next meeting of the FCOTAT will be held on Thursday September 1st, 2022, 6pm at
Elegante’s Restaurant and Pizzeria.