Eau Claire County is experiencing a wave of innovation and collaboration, and that is in part thanks to what Eau Claire County is doing to help the city and county prosper. With of a focus on innovation, community and looking forward to the new year, Colleen Bates, County Board First Vice-Chair, and Kathryn Schauf, County Administrator, spoke at this month’s Eggs & Issues on January 18 at Green Mill.
Innovation is key when it comes to a successful county government. With a limited amount of funding and resources, creativity is necessary to get the tasks at hand done effectively. Eau Claire County has done just that. As Bates said, “If something isn’t working, we need to do something different.” Eau Claire County is willing to make necessary changes to be successful, which have included focusing on research and combining programs that make sense.
In 2018, Eau Claire County has a hefty list of accomplishments, including collaboration on the Confluence Project and working on improving the criminal justice system, which has made us a leader in the state. This was done through implementing programs such as treatment courts, re-framing the juvenile justice system and continuing to control the number of people in jail.
The county plans to keep the momentum going into 2019. This year, the county plans to focus on expanding broadband access into more rural areas and to continue improving the criminal justice system. The focus will be on juvenile justice, mental health issues and treatment courts. Through these programs, the county plans on making long-term changes by keeping people out of the system through reform.
The county is also excited to continue with the UW-Extension program that is run through UW-Madison. With a focus on research and education, UW-Extension gives the community access to research as well as agents that are available to answer any questions of community members. This program also helps Eau Claire County develop a closer relationship with Madison, as well as other counties in the state.
Overall, 2018 was great, and Bates and Schauf are confident even better things are to come in 2019.
You can find the full presentation here.
If you want to read more about the event, it was covered by WQOW and The Leader Telegram.
Posted by Emma Koehn, Legislative & Workforce Development Intern
Eau Claire Chamber
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