City's priorities outlined in strategic plan draft

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Lacombe city council is formally outlining its vision to better the city in a document that will guide them until the 2022 municipal election.

 During their regular meeting on Monday, a draft of the Strategic Plan was unveiled. For those who followed the election campaigns last year, the plan’s top priorities – including council accessibility – should come as no surprise.

“I think for the most part it certainly reflects the wishes of council as whole and the direction that we want to take to improve our city,” said City of Lacombe Mayor Grant Creasey.

“As far as communication goes, making council more accessible is the big one and we’ve taken some positive steps in realizing that already so I was happy to see that on there to start with.”

Not too long after the election, livestreaming of council meetings was implemented, and the intent is for all video and audio to be archived. Making council documents more user-friendly is also a goal in the area of accessibility.

Lesser priorities in that area include a review and revision of statutory documentation to remove contradictions to better “reflect the will of council and the community.” A review of council committees will be considered as well to ensure members understand their roles and fulfill mandates to the best of their ability.

Further high-priority strategies include a review of the Land Use Bylaw regarding subdivision and rezoning of larger lots, completion of a social master plan and the development of key performance indicators to track success in a number of areas.

A desire to move away from dependency on the city’s residential tax base was also clearly prioritized, with a focus on determining alternative revenue sources, increasing public awareness of retail options and increasing the city’s commercial tax base.

A service level review of all city departments has also been included.

“Within each department, there’s room for varying changes that won’t necessarily revolve around alternate revenue…It’s a way for council to try and go about providing a level of service the community wants and be reasonable about providing it along the way.

Snow removal on parks and trails, hours at local recreational facilities and road maintenance will be reviewed, as well as public transportation..

An update to the nuisance bylaw, in the draft, is listed as being a medium priority behind the review of the Land Use Bylaw.

Changes and revisions will be made to the draft plan prior to the annual trade show April 20-21, and Coffee with Council April 21 from 11:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. Residents do have access to the initial draft as part of the April 9 council agenda package on the city website.

An updated draft will be displayed during the trade show as part of a public consultation process. Feedback will be shared at the April 23 council meeting.

A finalized document is expected to go before council for review and adoption in mid May.