Community Prioritizes Blaine County’s Future

By: Aimée Christensen

Wow! Our Blaine County community is incredibly dedicated, passionate, and filled with expertise to help ensure we will all be able to enjoy a lasting quality of place here in our special part of Idaho.

These included: a strategy to increase support for local housing, a critical local need; designing a solar and battery storage microgrid to provide energy backup and save costs at our hospital; building a ‘Class A’ commercial kitchen and local food hub, potentially with storage and processing; launching a risk mitigation fund for farmers to adopt regenerative agriculture practices for soil health and water conservation; and development of an office of regional collaboration to work across jurisdictional lines to plan for our better future.

These projects tackled at the workshop grew out of the priorities identified by our community at the first workshop on December 3, with affordable housing, local energy, local food and regenerative agriculture, water, transportation, and community building topping the list.

Last Wednesday, over 80 community members – government officials, business and nonprofit leaders and concerned residents – gathered at the Community Campus in Hailey for the second Blaine County Community Resilience Workshop to develop plans for projects that will help to build social, environmental and economic resilience.

Participants arrived ready to dig into their project, having chosen them in advance. Each table included a facilitator, and nonprofit leaders, government officials and others with the expertise and resources needed to develop implementable plans and be set up for success. The concrete commitments made at the workshop and the continued dedication and partnership of community members will ensure projects are brought to fruition.

The Sun Valley Institute looks forward to helping to support project collaborators going forward, and thanks all those who participated for helping to create a lasting quality of place.

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