Washington County, JLA Public Involvement earn ACE award

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Sponsored by: Department of Land Use and Transportation, Planning and Development Services Division

ACE award presentation 10_16

Washington County Department of Land Use & Transportation (LUT) and JLA Public Involvement have earned a 2018 Achievement in Community Engagement (ACE) award recognizing outstanding public engagement in connection with the Washington County Transportation Futures Study (WCTFS).

The award was presented by Sadie Carney, Citizen Involvement Advisory Committee of the Department of Land Conservation and Development (DLCD), during this morning's [Oct. 16] Washington County Board of Commissioners meeting.

"Washington County consists of urban, rural and suburban communities comprised of many different identity groups," Carney said. "This project used an exceptional and diverse array of outreach tools to engage these various publics, from innovative map graphics, to online open houses, to financial incentives. This process is a great example of a local government serving its community through a comprehensive community engagement process."

The Washington County Transportation Futures Study (WCTFS), funded by the state Legislature in 2013, identified possibilities for future transportation in the County. The study looked at the County's long-term transportation needs and evaluated strategies to sustain economic health and quality of life in the coming decades.

"Throughout the study, we collected input from the public and other city and agency partners," said Chris Deffebach, LUT Policy Analyst and Project Manager. "We asked the public to provide input on the study design, community values to consider, transportation options and study findings. Our partnership with JLA helped us to reach diverse audiences which provided comments that were really valuable."

"It is particularly difficult to engage people on long-term planning issues," said Jeanne Lawson, JLA Public Involvement. "We at JLA were so fortunate to work in partnership with the county's team. They were open to new and different approaches and committed to broad engagement. We also could not have done this without the help of Centro Cultural, who helped us reach out to their constituents, and the city of Hillsboro, which provided incentives and mailers to the entire county."

The DLCD ACE awards recognize excellence in community engagement. Award criteria includes involvement of historically marginalized communities, innovative elements, creative use of resources, development of successful partnerships and assessment/evaluation methods to improve future public involvement processes.

"The completion of the Transportation Futures Study enabled us to identify transportation needs and priorities based on community feedback," said Andrew Singelakis, Director, LUT. "The public outreach component of this study was critical to our findings. Our thanks to JLA staff for their assistance and to DLCD for this award."

Washington County is committed to planning and protecting the uses of the land and to building and maintaining a great transportation system–balancing care for the natural environment, economic development, safety and community livability.

Media Contact:

Melissa De Lyser, Public Affairs and Communications Manager