City Council Adopts 2017 Strategic Plan
2018 plan already on the drawing board.
CORDOVA, Alaska – At the last City Council meeting, the governing body passed resolution 05-17-14 adopting the Cordova Strategic action plan which emphasizes economic sustainability as the focused goal of the City Council.
Since January of this year, the City Council has been diligently toiling through workshops with City Manager Alan Lanning designed to engage a comprehensive strategic planning process intended to identify goals, priorities and areas of action.
With the current status of both the national and state economies, and the unpredictability of the fishing industry, the City Council is prudently and proactively planning for increasing self-reliance. The 8-session strategic planning effort helped the Council decipher a clear direction for the future of Cordova. Each session lasted no more than 2 hours and focused on a variety of topics and disciplines which supported the overall goal of economic sustainability.
The 2017 Cordova Strategic Action Plan is the result of this process. The first step was to identify the overarching goal of the City Council. City Manager Alan Lanning describes this goal as the “hub” of the City philosophy moving forward; that goal was identified as Economic Sustainability.
In the context of strategic planning, economic sustainability provides opportunities for managed growth, but also affords the opportunity to prosper, while maintaining services on self-sustaining revenue streams. Economic Sustainability also involves a reduced reliance on outside funding sources and prepares the City of Cordova for a self-sustained budget approach. Lanning explains there will be a simultaneous focus on revenue enhancing strategies.
The next step for City Council was to develop the “spokes” that would support the “hub” they had chosen. The ‘spokes’ had to relate to City services and how these services assisted in maintaining or producing economic sustainability. Council looked at budget, support services, internal services, city services and economic development within both the General Fund and the Enterprise Funds (Water/Sewer/Refuse/Harbor).
On to step 3 where each of the areas above were examined for sub-areas that would further define and support a relationship with economic sustainability. For example, the category Budget was explored by its relationship to taxes, staffing, service levels, revenue and expenditures.
This level of examination produced the 20/20 budget plan. The 20/20 budget plan declares, by the end of FY2020, the City of Cordova will examine all taxing types and authorities, staffing levels, service levels and all areas of revenue and expenditures to coincide with anticipated budget levels in 2020, allowing the City to be self-sustaining.
The City Council then developed a list of priorities which included:
- Develop a Financial Plan
- Economic Development Focus
- Identify and Develop Supporting Partnerships
- Develop and Follow Infrastructure Planning, Priorities and Projects as Identified.
- Internal Services Plan Examining Codes, Services, Processes and Staffing.
Finally, as an overall complement to the 5 priorities identified, step 5 developed a Strategic Work Plan for FY2017 and FY2018.
FY2017 Strategic Work Plan:
- Identify and examine the exemptions and exceptions identified in Code, in addition to already discussed taxes, such as the 1% seasonal sales tax and property taxes and how those might support and enhance economic sustainability and provide long term stability.
- Complete a rate study for all funds that charge fees and rates, including the enterprise funds to identify sustainable operational levels.
- Complete the Adams St. sidewalk project in 2017, placing a request for “permanent fund” transfer on the Council Agenda.
- Redefine and implement a new budgeting process for 2018, beginning this month.
- Begin new tourism/marketing and event identification strategies.
- Complete a Work Flow Analysis to determine system efficiencies.
- Complete Phase I of the Waste Oil Project, purchasing a centrifuge and begin work on EVOS building renovations to house operations.
- Work with partners, to bring conferences and other events to Cordova, utilizing the Cordova Center and providing customers for local businesses.
- In addition, work on evaluating partnerships, continue work on the Strategic Planning and develop a CIP cross reference document with capital priorities.
Watch for more on the Cordova Strategic Plan in the next few weeks. Questions or comments can be directed to the City Council, City Manager or Information Services Director.