When describing the potential growth and change expected from the energy boom, Noreen Moore of Routt County Economic Development compared it to becoming pregnant.
That is, it's one thing to plan for and want a baby, but when the pregnancy test comes back positive, a whole new level of comprehension of what it actually means to be a parent floods the mind.
The editorial board takes that analogy a step further, especially when it comes to economic and social development that will come with growth.
It's one thing to be in a relationship and to plan on having a baby (or want economic growth). It's another thing to go out one night, meet someone for the first time, and find out two to three weeks later that a baby (or growth) is on the way.
Although a new level of comprehension may come from people who have planned to have a baby, hopefully some blueprint work has been done, such as reading informational books, re-adjusting finances and restructuring the house. Hopefully, our city and county leaders and their residents are doing the same sort of research and planning.
The planning is entirely different in the latter scenario. Questions arise: Do the two get married? If not, how involved will each parent be? If the baby is not "wanted," do they put it up for adoption or have an abortion?
While the last question stirs a lot of debate in the pro-life, pro-choice argument, it could be just as heated of a debate if Craig and the rest of the Yampa Valley don't become the planning parents when it comes to economic and city development.
Or simply put, the difference between the two scenarios is one is proactive planning approach, and the other is reactive planning.
Moore made her analogy during a recent Yampa Valley Partners meeting, and it was not the lone analogy made. Others compared the expected boom to a tsunami, and wondered if we would be ready when it hit. It's a question the editorial board echoes.
We think the best way to be prepared is to get involved. We suggest more people attend city council and county commissioner meetings, but more importantly plan on attend planning meetings and public hearings, when policy is often constructed before it gets approval at the aforementioned groups.
We must ensure that our elected officials take their responsibilities seriously, and they are doing the planning that will ensure long-term growth, not just another bust at the end of a boom.
Join these groups, attend the Yampa Valley Partners meetings, and get involved with service organizations, so our youths have a plan in place when the city's new infrastructure goes up.
For our part, the Daily Press is always looking at ways to keep the public better informed as to when and where the meetings are and why they are important. You can also make your voice heard by signing up for a three-month term on our editorial board.
And let us at the Daily Press know if there are better ways to keep you informed or active in the community.
Some have said that Craig's population will double in the next 10 years, and we encourage you to have your say in what that means for Craig and the rest of Moffat County.