In my last blog post, I said that if we want to achieve great things, we have to be willing to work not just with each other and other government bodies but also with our city employees, our local businesses, local non-profits and community groups, and the citizens. It takes all of us working together to make Simpsonville great. That’s what the One Simpsonville vision was all about.
Since I’ve taken office, I’ve seen so many examples of this ideal becoming reality. One such example is the progress we have made in bringing the Swamp Rabbit Trail to Simpsonville. This has truly been a One Simpsonville effort. And no, we’re not there yet, but we’re getting closer.
Still down a man in the Planning Department since David Dyrhaug had been promoted to City Administrator, the City had struggled to make the Swamp Rabbit Trail a reality. With the day-to-day planning responsibilities, our one-man Planning Department didn’t have the time to give such a huge project the attention this one required. Enter former Police Chief, Steve Moore, who stepped up to the plate with his excellent grant-writing abilities. This helped us earn TAP dollars to get the project started. We had a plan and were ready to go. Then, there were months and months of negotiating with the Railroad, and we just weren’t able to come to a compromise that would work. Ultimately, it seemed like all that hard work might be for naught. Enter local businessman and long-time resident Lou Hutchings, who also stepped up to the plate. He researched alternative solutions and brought back to the city the idea of working with the National Park Service. He made the connection and got us started on the path that lead to the recent exciting announcement that we were one of only ten cities to receive an NPS grant.
I am and always will be proud of Simpsonville and the people who love her so much they volunteer their time, effort, and talents to help her keep reaching higher!