Business owners and residents of Eclectic interested in the town’s newly established Business Relations Committee (BRC) heard from BRC chairman Justin Pack during an informational meeting held Nov. 5.
Pack, a 20-year-old Eclectic resident currently attending Central Alabama Community College in Alexander City, came up with the idea of a government-backed committee designed to support business a few months ago because he wants to see his hometown grow.
“I’d like to see the town population double,” he said. “If we can get to 2,000 or 2,500 residents come the 2030 Census, I think that would be great. That would make us a city and open up more funding options and grant opportunities. Having more people move to Eclectic will be good for business.”
According to Pack and BRC documentation handed to those who attended the meeting, the BRC exists in place of a traditional chamber of commerce and its primary focus is to build business relations with current, new and prospective businesses in Eclectic.
“Having a council, it’s cheaper to run because we do not have to have a paid person or a staff or a building,” Pack said. “The town government provides the building and the resources we need to function.”
Pack decided against proposing a standalone association.
"A few years ago, the town tried having a merchant association,” Pack said. “It failed after a few months. Putting (the committee) under the town government means it will be more stable; there’s more accountability; and it’s all inclusive. We cannot play favorites.”
The dollar amount for annual dues to the BRC has not been determined yet due to the fact the BRC does not have a full board yet to decide the cost of membership.
“The board will vote on annual dues at our next meeting,” he said. “I will be recommending to the board $50 per year.”
The organization is currently collecting board member applications. The deadline to turn in an application for consideration is noon Friday at Eclectic Town Hall.
Pack will recommend interested board members to the town council and board members will serve for a term of two years.
“We really need to tap into our location close to Lake Martin,” he said. “The lake is something we really need to capitalize on. One of our goals is to put together a property list so when a business owner wants to come in we can show available properties. A goal is to keep current business going and prepare for new business coming to Eclectic.”
A main benefit of BRC or any business-related organization is the ability to network, according to Pack.
“We really want people to get to know each other,” he said. “Networking is important to growth. We need people who can share their ideas with others. Every person who joins can be involved in the committee some way. Whether it is being on the board or a subcommittee, it gets members involved in town government.”
The BRC is open to all businesses and individuals including home-based businesses, clubs, organizations and consumers interested in the business environment in Eclectic.
Those interested in learning more about the BRC may contact Pack at 334-580-0288 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The organization’s next meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Dec. 3 at the Eclectic Municipal Courtroom.