Lyon Township officials are exploring participation in a statewide program that aims to increase economic development capabilities.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s (MEDC) Redevelopment Ready Community (RRC) program assists local municipalities in establishing a sound foundation for redevelopment and investment to occur in their communities. The voluntary program measures and then certifies communities that integrate transparency, predictability and efficiency into their daily development practices.

The program’s six best practice areas include Community Plans and Public Outreach, Zoning Regulations, Development Review Process, Recruitment and Education, Redevelopment Ready Sites, and Community Prosperity. The certification is a formal recognition that a community has a vision for the future and the fundamental practices in place to get there.

At a recent meeting of Lyon Township’s Downtown Development Authority (DDA), officials discussed the possibility of the municipality participating in the program in hopes of becoming RRC certified. DDA and Economic Development Coordinator Tina Archer provided an update, noting that the township has a new MEDC representative that she hopes can attend the DDA’s next meeting to share more information about the program. Archer says in the meantime, she’ll be communicating with the representative about where the township is at in the process and whether it can be fast-tracked. She shared the importance of becoming RRC certified, which includes access to state grants that is only available to certified municipalities.

Other local communities have been certified through the program within the last year or so, including the Village of Pinckney and the City of Howell. (DK)