FREDERICTON (GNB) – An initial round of public meetings has concluded as the local service districts of Keswick Ridge, Douglas, Kingsclear, Bright and a portion of Queensbury consider restructuring to form a rural community.

A feasibility study into the idea began in March. A preliminary report was released and a group of residents studying the concept will be seeking additional feedback.

“I encourage all residents in the local service districts involved to engage in the process,” said Environment and Local Government Minister Serge Rousselle. “A lot of work has already been accomplished, but residents still have an opportunity to shape the final proposal before a plebiscite is considered on the project.”

Open houses and information sessions will be held in July and August so that residents are well-informed and given an opportunity to ask questions and express opinions.

The rural community model has characteristics similar to those of a municipality. It is designed to put community decisions in the hands of its members, help them plan the future they want, and enable them to ensure that local services meet their needs and make the best use of property tax revenue.

More information is available online.