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This report shows how Macon is doing in education, jobs and quality of life since 2013

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Downtown Macon is welcoming several new businesses in 2019. Here are three that are coming soon.

A Macon organization says the community is trending in the right direction and it has the data to back that up.

The OneMacon Steering Committee released a scorecard Tuesday on how Macon-Bibb County fared in public education, job growth and quality of life over a five year period. The committee, comprised of 40 public, private and nonprofit organizations, developed a community-wide strategic plan that was utilized over a five-year period.

Many of the committee’s recommendations were implemented by various community partners like the Bibb County school district, downtown booster agency NewTown Macon and others. The results are more jobs, a better high school graduation rate and a growing downtown and surrounding neighborhoods, according to OneMacon.

A key to the successes has been the buy-in from agencies across Macon and residents, committee co-chairs Kathryn Dennis and Robbo Hatcher said.

“For five years every month . . . people came together very faithfully and consistently to talk about the plan, what we’re doing and where people needed help,” said Dennis, who is also president of the Community Foundation of Central Georgia. “The collaboration was really budding. We were already on the path but this cemented it.”

Highlights of the One Macon Strategic Plan include:

$2.4 million in private donations for the Bibb County school district “Leader in Me” initiative;

An increase of 5,606 jobs from 2013-2018;

An 18% increase in the graduation rate for Bibb County school district from 2012-2017;

A 5% increase in the tax digest base from 2013-2018

One of the more prominent programs this time has been the character-building program “Leader in Me” for the Bibb County school district. It has led to improved test scores and attendance rates in the schools where it’s been implemented.

The community has also benefited by the Business Education Partnership between the school district and OneMacon, Dennis said.

Six years ago the OneMacon Steering Committee began working with a consultant on developing ideas for how to better Macon. Now that those results are out, work has already started on crafting another five-year plan that will be released in the fall.

“While we have successfully completed our first phase, it is important that we continue to work together to make Macon a better community,” Hatcher said in a news release.

To view the OneMacon scorecard visit OneMacon.org/score-card.

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