News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Council working on goals for 2020-21

The process for determining Sisters City Council goals for the 2020-21 fiscal year had some new wrinkles this year as discussed at their goal-setting session last Thursday.

When the councilors gathered with City Manager Cory Misley and City department heads, they were presented with a proposal recommending that in each odd-numbered year, after elections, City goals be established for a two-year period allowing for multiple budget cycles to implement. The starting point in each even-numbered year would be the previously established goals, and the objectives under each goal would be reviewed and updated for the second year.

The goals for the City in FY 2019-20 were livability and growth, public safety, economic development, essential infrastructure, good governance, and community vision. Under each of those goals are a multitude of objectives that support making tangible progress toward each goal. The department work-plans further support the objectives.

For 2020-21 goals, the process was reversed from previous years. Staff reviewed the current goals and determined that almost all of the objectives have been accomplished or are on track to be by June 30, 2020. Staff thought the overarching goals were still relevant and new objectives could be created to further support the goals for FY 2020-21.

The draft goals and objectives are the result of recommendations from City staff.

As Misley explained to the councilors, “The objectives under each goal and in the department work-plans are compiled from three primary sources.

First, staff works to be as in-tune with Council as possible.

We listen closely to comments and concerns voiced formally and informally and have worked to compile and include those in the draft presented.

Second, as the day-to-day providers of city services, staff is immersed in our operations, planning documents, capital projects, etc., including both opportunities and challenges.

Based on where we have been, and where we want to go as well as what is feasible, staff should provide input to Council on the timing of projects and programs.

Third, as stewards of the Sisters Country Vision, drawing from that work and document to guide strategic projects outside of our core essential services.”

A number of the objectives will support strategies in the Sisters Country Vision.

In previous years, councilors would create lists of projects and objectives they wanted to accomplish. Those were organized into larger categories, and the ones with the most support would become the goals. The new process streamlined the goal-setting to a three-hour session.

Councilors discussed the objectives, asked questions, sought clarification, and suggested changes. Their input goes back to the staff for revisions. Misley indicated that the goals and objectives will be formalized heading into March, department work-plans will be refined into April, to be followed by a proposed budget in May reflecting fund allocations to support the goals and objectives.


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