Word on the Street: Downtown Development Corp. not adopting transparency of similar groups

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before.

A public-private partnership starts up to focus on economic development and improvements in part of central Illinois. The organization, whose board is headed by someone from Caterpillar Inc., is getting some public funds, but doesn’t intend to open up its meetings for public attendance or scrutiny.

If you guessed Focus Forward Central Illinois — which had some transparency concerns when it started out life under former chief Jim Baumgartner — you’d be wrong.

Under their new board, and new transparency policies, they’re proving to be a model for how public-private partnerships can still be open about how business is being conducted while keeping the nitty-gritty of negotiations where they belong.

The new Downtown Development Corp., on the other hand? Let’s just say board members there aren’t interested in taking a page from FFCI’s book.

Read more: http://www.pjstar.com/article/20140622/News/140629809#ixzz3CJKjM3NP