The Manteca Millennial Advisory Committee (MMAC) provides communication between the residents of Manteca, local government officials, professionals, and influencers in support of policies and projects to attract and retain millennial residents. We spoke with Committee Chairman Lance Elliott to learn more about the genesis of MMAC, as well as his hopes for the future of the committee.
Can you explain what the Millennial Advisory Committee is and how it began?
The Manteca Millennial Advisory Committee exists to provide an open channel of communication between the residents of Manteca and local government officials, professionals, and influencers in support of policies and projects to attract and retain millennial residents. The MMAC began as a directive from the Manteca city council to create an advisory group to hear back from millennials in the community. The submission form was made available online and marketed via the local newspaper and social media. Committee members were then chosen from a field of applicants by city council members and staff.
Can you tell us about the work you do with the Millennial Advisory Committee?
My job as Chairman of the Committee is to preside over all meetings of the MMAC, exercise supervision over all affairs of the MMAC, and–with the concurrence of the MMAC and city staff–delegate duties to another committee member or staff liaison on a temporary basis, if required.
What in your background drew you to working with the Committee?
My grandfather was a member of the Manteca city council from 1983 to 1994 and served as mayor from 1994 to 1998. He instilled in me a vigor for local government at an early age. During the 2018 mayoral election, I attempted to work with both mayoral candidates to organize a public Q and A session over social media for the benefit of Mantecans.
Why should other Cities get involved in work like the work of the Committee?
Millennial Advisory Committees allow a level of transparency to the inner workings of local governments. This enables millennial residents to have a voice in their communities.
What are some of the challenges you faced while at the organization? What work are you most proud of?
Some of the challenges the MMAC has faced during our first term are much like any new committee: figuring out why we exist, what impact we want to have, and where we see this committee in the future. We addressed these challenges by creating by-laws for our committee, advising city council on matters of importance to millennial residents, and fundraising campaigns. I’m most proud of the work the committee has done bringing light to the negative repercussions of the city being in a constant state of residential development. In particular, residential development that does not focus on addressing the issues facing Manteca, such as affordable housing, environmental prudence and walkable neighborhoods.
What are some of the Committee’s near-term goals?
The Committee is currently focused on community engagement projects, such as a community garden and painting the city’s utility boxes. In a more practical perspective, we would like to set up a foundation for the Committee’s success moving forward by establishing trust with city staff and officials as well as establishing funding for future community engagement opportunities.
How could someone get involved in the Committee?
The Committee has two social media pages: our Facebook Page is https://www.facebook.com/mantecamillennialadvisory and our Instagram is https://www.instagram.com/mantecamillennialadvisory/. We encourage the community to follow us there and engage in an open forum about what is most important to Manteca’s residents. In 2022, a new term will begin with another selection process for Committee members, and we encourage anyone born between 1980 and 2000 who lives within city limits to apply and join us!