Couple Uses Massive Lottery Payout to Build Community Infrastructure
By John Robb
Here’s a great story.
Mark and Cindy Hill, from Dearborn, Missouri, recently won a quarter billion dollar lottery payout. What makes them different from the typically lottery winner is that it doesn’t look like they will spontaneously combust due to excessive consumption. Instead, from all accounts, they plan to continue to live modestly and will continue the small town routines that they currently enjoy. As smart as that is, what makes Mark and Cindy really different is that they plan to invest their money in community infrastructure. Here’s what they are putting their money into the following:
- A new fire station with better highway access.
- A ball field for local kids.
- A sewer treatment plant.
I liked this story a lot. It got me thinking about what I would community improvements I’d invest in if I had a boatload of extra cash to do so. I’d do things a bit differently than Mark and Cindy. My investments would be in productive, 21st century infrastructure. The type of infrastructure a community needs to have in order to prosper in the future.
What would that include? Here’s some of suggestions I’ve covered recently:
- A Public Greenhouse (and Community Gardens if needed).
- A Community Microgrid. A smart local electrical grid that lets the community produce more local power and avoid blackouts.
- A Makerspace outfitted with all of the latest equipment.
- A tool library and a fix it Saturday.
I’ve got LOTs more. Lots of ways to enable people to do more locally while connecting to the world to find out how. Thing is, it doesn’t take winning the lottery to build this infrastructure. Almost everything I’ve listed is something that can be done relatively inexpensively as a bootstrap. What would be on your list?
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