City departments offer short-term goals for city’s long-term planning

Previously held public forum about the Cedar City Strategic Plan in the council chambers of the City Hall building, Cedar City, Utah, Dec. 2, 2014 | Photo by Carin Miller, St. George News

CEDAR CITY – Cedar City’s long-term strategic plan is taking shape as department heads have submitted yearly goals for consideration by the City Council and ultimately the public.

In a special meeting of the City Council Wednesday afternoon, City Manager Rick Holman presented the City Council and administrators an addendum to the city’s proposed strategic plan outlining department goals.

The proposed addendum comes in part as a result of public comments offered during public forums held in November and December 2014.

“One of the comments we heard on the original strategic plan is that it’s a great broad plan of which direction the city should go, and why, but there needed to be more specific items that can be reviewed,” Holman said. “And so we are going to plan on using this addendum, if you will, of strategic goals so that department by department can say ‘this is how we’re meeting the strategic plan annually.’”

The three page addendum includes annual goals for the city’s many divisions and departments, such as:

  • Cedar City Aquatic Center – Exceed budgeted revenue for center by 5 percent and keep operation expenses 5 percent below budgeted amount
  • Economic Development – Continue efforts to attract greater retail/commercial opportunities while supporting existing businesses
  • Heritage Theater and Festival Hall – Plan and implement a maintenance and renovation plan as budget allows
  • Parks and Outdoor Facilities Division – Plant new trees at plat H in the Cedar City Cemetery, build new office on the corner and remove old office/shop and evaluate cremation memorial
  • Cedar City Police Department – Foster a dynamic organization that utilizes leading-edge technology and methods in enhancing community policing

See the proposed plan documentation here:

There were only about 10 community members attending Wednesday’s special meeting, Holman said, but the two previous public forums offered the city a good amount of feedback to work with.

During the Nov. 20 public forum to discuss the Strategic Plan, residents criticized the broad terminology and long-term goals that were established in the draft proposed to residents. Many who spoke aloud said they expected to see a completed and formalized plan ready for discussion, but said they were blindsided by the incomplete picture the draft painted for them.

The same rang true for attendees who made their way out to the second community forum on Dec. 2.

There should have been more emphasis placed on the arts in the “wise economic growth” section of the plan, Cedar City Arts Council President Deb Snider said during the December meeting.

“Two years ago, we had an economic impact study in Iron County that revealed $42.4 million of an economic impact coming from the arts,” she said. “This is largely driven by the Utah Shakespeare Festival, but also there are so many other wonderful arts organizations in our town and our county.”

While the new goals are not request-specific, Holman said, the public consensus that goals needed to be much more focused and less broad was carefully considered within each department.

“There was some great input from those public meetings,” Holman said. “And we think we’ve incorporated that into these individual department goals and hopefully when we put this on the agenda, both documents will be available and the public will still put input into that as well.”

The council will identify issues that may need reworking before bringing the plan, with addendum, to a public hearing and council vote in the coming weeks.

The overall strategic plan will be revisited every 5 to 10 years, City Manager Rick Holman said, and the departmental goals will be re-evaluated yearly.

The next regular meeting of the City Council will be held Aug. 19 at 5:30 p.m. in Council Chambers, 10 N. Main St., Cedar City. If the item does not make the Aug. 19 agenda, it may be addressed at the City Council Work Meeting Sept. 2, 5:30 p.m. in chambers.

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  • protech August 14, 2015 at 7:56 pm

    Probably should plan on keeping some employees. More are leaving now than in years past for higher paying jobs. The Ccpd is a training stop for other departments because the pay is so low. Then a story just ran where a building inspector is leaving because of pay. Other departments are also seeing increased turnover.

  • Dexter August 16, 2015 at 9:49 pm

    Nope can’t do that. because the decent wages only go to the chosen few… and we all know who they are…

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