Just a few years ago Allentown and the local Chamber of Commerce were conducting Vision meetings for the merchants of Hamilton Mall. While these soon to be displaced saps thought that they were planning Hamilton Streets' future, Reilly and Browne were cooking up the NIZ. On a more regional level, in 2011 the valley received $3.4 million dollars to study development. This hunk of HUD cash was distributed to local agencies, who like baby birds with open beaks, ate it up. The baby birds included LVEDC,LVPC,CACLV,and LANTA. A special director was hired and community meetings were conducted to collect your input. They named this disappearing $3.4million Envision. You can now attend the final meetings where the conclusions are available; Imagine that.
ADDENDUM: There is a mistaken notion that a grant, especially a federal HUD Grant, has little bearing to our pockets. Apologists for this bureaucratic waste say well at least the money is being used locally. If the money is being wasted locally or not, this waste is being repeated locally, regionally and nationally. Grant writing specialists are prized employees in all levels of government. Although due diligence needs to proceed any project or expenditure, the grant process has assumed an expensive life of it's own.