Submitted by Sharon Hanson, Marshall City Administrator
Expectations for the position of City Administrator as communicated by the Mayor and City Council and following two months on the job have led me to develop some early transition goals for the position and the City of Marshall. The following is a list of transitional goals identified for the upcoming year.
Communication with the public is a basic obligation of government. A foremost goal is the development of a communications plan that improves the quality and quantity of communication with the public and City employees. Equally important is increasing the opportunity for City elected officials and staff to engage personally with residents through meetings, events and one-on-one individual conversations so that every resident feels connected and involved. Improved website, greater use of social media, strengthening relationships with local media, connecting with key community groups and consistent messaging are ways we can promote the positive attributes of the City of Marshall.
Shortly the City will be undergoing the financial audit of the previous year and preparing the 2019 budget and levy. Fiscal responsibility is a key value and operating principle. It is important for the public to understand the City of Marshall’s financial position, audit reports, budget and budget process. The Mayor and Council have expressed a desire to present fiscal information more broadly and in reader-friendly formats. In addition, the Council has mentioned the need for long-range planning with our budget and capital/infrastructure plans so we can adequately fund priorities while working with limited budgets.
The City’s Comprehensive Plan, which is a long-range guide for growth, development and change over 20 years, has exceeded its life expectancy. The plan needs to be revised and updated to keep it current and to incorporate changes in trends. Conversations with the community will be sought to create a vision for the City of Marshall’s future. Initial discussions will occur in 2018 on how best to undertake this revision.
Never has there been a time so significant to Marshall’s future as it is now in terms of economic development. Marshall is a regional center for medical care, retail, trade, education, employment and business with common labor and retail draw from approximately 50 miles from the City. Support in the area of economic development continues to be a high priority goal. We will be looking for ways to maintain and improve our local and regional economy.
In addition, I will be working closely with staff to review current operations, policies and overall organizational structure to achieve efficiencies and improve the value of the services we provide to our community.
In closing, these are just a few of the transitional goals for this year. Additional goals will be developed with the Mayor and Council during an annual goal work session as well as feedback from residents. I have been fortunate to meet many community members who are passionate about the City of Marshall. Passion that will help build positive momentum for a successful 2018. If you have additional thoughts or questions, don’t hesitate to contact me directly at 507-537-6761.