Less than a year from today, Hudson residents will go to the polls in a municipal election.
But as the town’s business owners and operators gathered yet again this week to discuss the viability of a Societe de Developpement Commerciale (SDC), will the vision required to carry Hudson into the future be found?
After all, there have been so many discussions about the commercial decline of Hudson’s village. There have been enough public meetings. There has been more than adequate consultation.
SDC or no SDC, it is time for the next stage where leadership committed to hammering out a real vision for Hudson will probably make the difference between the town becoming commercially viable again, or sliding finally into the kind of place that people remember but no longer want to be part of.
Lately it seems as though a welcome breath of fresh air is rising through the murk with some long-empty storefronts filling up again, and all of us are holding our breath a little bit, hoping that it’s real.
But alchemy alone won’t revive the town’s waning fortunes. For a true and lasting recovery, it’s going to take a redefinition of what Hudson can become.
There’s no question that Hudson has built itself into the kind of place that residents feel intensely loyal about. But new challenges are making it necessary for the town to reinvent itself. It is now time for the heavy lifting of bringing change to Hudson, and that means the necessary leadership to do so.
I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I suggest the municipal election next November is perhaps the most important Hudson has ever had.
It’s going to require candidates who understand that the first order of business will be to elucidate a vision for the town. And I don’t mean a mission statement outlining what the town stands for — that will be the comparatively easy part afterwards. I mean a vision statement.
What the new Hudson will be about has to be the central plank in any potential candidate’s platform.
A vision statement is needed before any mission statement, and I’m sure I won’t be the only resident listening very closely to the candidates who seem to understand this.