NEWS

City leaders update strategic goals

Matt Algarin

With a unanimous vote during the Aug. 3 City Council meeting, city leaders have updated their 5-year strategic goals.

"We tried to incorporate issues that were of the highest priority," City Manager Greg Kisela said.

As part of the city's annual Visioning Session, members of the city council identified priority goals and objectives for fiscal year 2016-2021.

 The strategic focuses are broken down into various categories, such as being financially sound/providing service value; world class beach, fishing and harbor; improved mobility and connectivity; high quality of life and safety for families; and quality development and revitalization.

As for the city's financial soundness the overall goal is to create and maintain strategies for revenue growth, expenditure monitoring and long-term financing options.

To accomplish that, goals include reviewing investment and debt policies for best returns, the evaluation of alternative revenue sources; and to identify and plan for project submittals as they relate to the Restore Act.

Other goals include developing programs to enhance organization development and service excellence, and analyzing, measuring and improving key processes to enhance services.

As for the beaches, fishing and the harbor, the goal is to improve public use of the beach, waterways and harbor. This includes maintaining compliance with boardwalk regulations; promoting the fishing industry through the Tourist Development Department; and expanding Joe's Bayou.

Secondary goals include implementing a stormwater management plan and restoring Norriego Point.

The focus on mobility and connectivity would include increasing implementing the city's multi=modal plans, which would include increasing and optimizing parking along the harbor district and providing safe pedestrian crossings on U.S. Hwy. 98. Other goals include implementing a wayfinding master plan in the harbor district as well as securing additional right-of-ways for a connection between Beach Drive and Benning Drive.

Quality of life and safety strategies include enhancing the city's library, parks and recreational services, which would include goals such as increasing young adults usage of the library, the development of a parks and recreation master plan, implementing alcohol and spring break regulations.

As for development, the goals are to implement the Harbor and Town Center CRA Master Plans, extend the harbor boardwalk to the east and west under the Marler Bridge, implement landscaping improvements in the Town Center CRA (along Main Street area), and implement a code enforcement compliance action plan, as well as developing and implementing a city economic development plan (including incentives) and pursuing appropriate annexation opportunities.

For a complete breakdown of the city's 5-year Strategic Goal Table, see www.cityofdestin.com.