7 Simple Ways to Stay Involved in Central

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One thing that came out of last month's election is a desire from many Central citizens to get more involved in their city. Getting more involved is an effective way to make sure that your voice is heard and represented, and it allows you to remain aware of what progress is being made in Central and how you can help. Here are some simple ways to stay up to date and involved in Central:

1) Go to City Council meetings. Meetings are the second and fourth Tuesday of every month. They begin at 6 PM at Kistenwood Reception Hall on Greenwell Springs Road. Agendas for each meeting are available ahead of time, and minutes from the previous meeting are available from the city a couple of weeks later. Public input is welcome on every issue discussed at City Council meetings. Agendas and minutes are available HERE. The next City Council meeting is Tuesday, April 13th.

2) Attend Planning & Zoning Meetings. The Planning & Zoning Commission meets on the fourth Thursday of each month immediately following the Board of Adjustments meeting, which is also open to the public. Board of Adjustments begins at 5:30 PM at Kristenwood, and Planning and Zoning begins at 6:00 at the same location. Planning & Zoning is where items like building permits and rezoning cases are heard, so attending will keep you aware of what buildings and businesses are in the works for Central. Agendas and minutes for Planning & Zoning can be found HERE.

3) Attend a School Board meeting. Although the Central Community School System is a different entity than the City of Central, Central schools are still very much a part of our city and have a major impact on many aspects of Central. The School Board welcomes public input on every issue on the agenda at every meeting. The School Board meets on the second and fourth Monday of every month. Many of the meetings are held at Kristenwood, though sometimes the meetings are moved around to different Central schools. Having these meetings at the schools also gives students and teachers an opportunity to showcase what they have been working on at school. Meetings usually begin at 6 PM, and the location is announced ahead of time on the AGENDA for that meeting.

4) Join the Chamber of Commerce. Businesses in Central are invited to join and become involved in different events around Central. The purpse of the Chamber is to promote Central business. You can learn about the Chamber and how to join by visiting the Chamber's WEBSITE. Chamber member meetings are held every month. The Chamber of Commerce also sends out weekly email updates that you can request be sent to you.

5) Join the CCA. The Central Community Alliance was created as a way to keep Central citizens informed about government, schools, businesses, and churches and to help facilitate communication between the public and these oranizations. The CCA holds forums regularly featuring speakers like elected officials, city leaders, and members of homeowners associations. Regular meetings happen on the third Tuesday of each month at 7 PM in the DEMCO meeting room. Visit the CCA WEBSITE to learn more.

6) Keep up with the news. Central news is posted regularly on Visitors to the site can sign up for daily email updates by clicking the link on the right side of the front page. You can also see city news and updates on the Central Government website, Also, the City of Central has a Facebook group where city residents can discuss issues, concerns, and news.

7) Volunteer. Many organizations in Central offer ample opportunities to volunteer your time, resources, or money for the betterment of our city. Blood drives happen regularly at churches. Our city is constantly putting on benefits for various Central families going through rough times, and each time our community comes out in force to support the cause. There is a Central food bank where you can donate non-perishable food items. Winn Dixie has a barrel where you can drop your donations. St. Vincent de Paul has a thrift shop at Sullivan and Greenwell Springs Road that you can support through donations or by shopping there. Pick up trash: churches and other organizations participate in Adopt a Road and Adopt a Spot, where it is their job to keep a piece of road in Central clean. The Central Kiwanis club does community service projects. Help out in the schools- our schools are often in need of people to help fix up and clean up. Help with things like Cookin' in Central, Relay for Life and the Central Christmas parade. These sorts of productions always require massive amounts of volunteer effort. The possibilities are endless. Get creative. Central Speaks will try to help as much as possible by posting about these opportunities when they become available.