Naming a government department

Nobody asked me but I’ll offer it anyway.

You know I think the name “Business New Brunswick” is not a good name for a department doing economic development. It doesn’t say anthing. It could be an industry association. It could be a newspaper or magazine.

However, I have given some thought to just what the name should be over the past few years and I had settled in my mind on the plain vanilla “Department of Economic Development”. However, I am not really comfortable with this name either as it doesn’t convey any sense of the challenges that lay ahead.

So, Minister Byrne, my proposed name for your Department would be:

Department of Community Renewal

To me this name is perfect. It reflects the urgency of the challenge. It underscores that provinces are a collection of communities that need to be vibrant and thriving in order for the province to succeed. It is a proactive name – forward thinking. And most important in my mind, it allows for a much broader mandate (see my earlier blog about alignment). Community renewal is about education, economy, infrastructure, culture, attitude, etc.

I am borrowing from those old 1970s/1980s Departments of Urban Renewal which were designed to bring inner cities back to life and many have been successful. Our challenge is province-wide. Over 70% of our communities are losing population.

Now, I don’t know if anyone is thinking about renaming BNB. I hope so. And if they ask for suggestions, this would be my first option.

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0 Responses to Naming a government department

  1. Anonymous says:

    Neat, have you sent it his way? However, what’s in a name? And will it even be trying to do that.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I like renewal, but why not, Department of Economic Renewal or Dept. of Economic and Community Renewal

  3. Blackjack says:

    The last thing New Brunswick needs is another name for a department that doesn’t do much anyway. Maybe we could invent a new department that forms new departments. We could call that one the department of name renewal or something witty and pulsating like that.
    I think it is time to merge BNB with another department, cutting the bureaucracy in half during the process because despite the severe overmanning of this department too many economic opportunities are being lost to the province. The latest one being this new Irish investment that would have assisted in the Fundy trail.
    Besides, we now have too many labor, industrial, employment, business and enterprise centers. I would love to see the figures for staffing levels in places such as this.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Here’s a problem, and a big one. Say you are in Vermont, and in your town you have a problem attracting different levels of investment, what do you do?

    Well, you solve it locally. As was mentioned here before, but isn’t repeated often enough, local municipalities have power even over sales taxes. So if Wal Mart sets up in your town much to the chagrin of all the small businesses, you can at least hold a vote to increases sales taxes so that the municipality can increase services.

    That’s just an example. What about here in Canada? Well, there is property taxes, and thats it. So ‘community development’ is done in Fredericton by people who may never have set foot in Bathurst. The only people with money are the feds, so as they lower taxes, the only way a community can get funds is by raising property taxes-something thats suicidal for politicians, but may be necessary.

    So community development in the states is done by PEOPLE, not by bureaucracies and levels of government. That’s the problem with being a former, and maybe still, colony. Everything is ‘top down’. So those masses of employees who do lord knows what aren’t necessary.

    Community renewal comes from people, not governments. However, the question still remains, how can you do that when you have a government that won’t let you.

  5. Alec says:

    Sure, neat. How about “The Department of Economic Dithering”?