HORSHAM residents can have their say on their priorities for the rural city at community information meetings starting tomorrow.
Residents' ideas about the urban area of the city will help develop a Horsham Community Plan. Horsham Rural City Council community facilitator Martin Bride said the community would lead the plan, not council.
"Every idea that people come up with is put on the table and voted on by the community to determine whether it is a priority," he said.
"Council's role is really just to facilitate the plan and the community will identify the priorities and then carry out the plan.
"Having a funding application that says the community got together and thought this project was a top priority is a key for unlocking funding opportunities at other levels of government."
Mr Bride said council had consulted with Horsham's schools to determine areas that young residents thought needed to be improved. Students suggested community areas be created along the Wimmera River, noted the importance of education and asked for more retail outlets.
"The ideas that came from students at our schools will be used to spark some ideas and conversations at the meetings," he said.
"I don't know whether the majority or a significant number of people will see something along the river as being important but a lot of children did."
Mr Bride said the Horsham Community Plan followed the success of similar initiatives at Natimuk, Laharum and Dadswells Bridge. He said the Natimuk community was able to buy discounted solar panels because of the bulk-buying power of residents banding together.
"It has been incredibly successful in some of our smaller towns in identifying infrastructure-type needs and softer social needs," he said.
"A steering committee will take the outcomes or recommendations of all three events and combine them into one steering plan."
Meetings are tomorrow between 6pm and 8pm at Horsham Town Hall, on Thursday between 1pm and 3pm at Horsham Civic Centre and on Sunday between 1pm and 3pm at Horsham Lawn Tennis Club.