The future of Wellesley Township over the next decade became a little clearer on Tuesday night when councillors were presented with the draft version of their new strategic plan. Fire chief Andrew Lillico made the presentation and provided an update on the process that got underway last fall. The 28-page document provides an overview of strategic goals, program managers, objectives, timelines and progress indicators for a range of projects that fall under six distinct categories; human resources, healthy communities and environments, growth management and sustainable growth, infrastructure, public engagement and partnerships, and customer service. Lillico received input from staff, councillors, and other municipalities when putting together the report, which he hopes will act as a blueprint for the next 10 years.
“We chose 2012 to 2022 because it falls in line with our 10-year capital budget,” he explained.
The vision statement that will be used to develop all future plans is clearly a homage to the historical past of Wellesley, but with an eye forward as well: “The Township of Wellesley is a sustainable community that preserves its heritage while shaping its future,” while the mission statement will be “To deliver quality services through leadership, innovation, partnership and community engagement in a fair and cost-effective manner.”
Without providing any specifics, each of the six categories was given their own guiding objectives, which should help facilitate the decision-making process moving forward.
For example, the strategic objective for customer service is “To ensure quality and accountability in providing effective and efficient customer services that match or exceed our customer’s expectations for our residents and businesses.”
The timelines for each objective range from a few months all the way to the end of 2022, a moving target that Lillico said allows for flexibility and fluidity in the decision making process moving forward.
“I feel that the plan is fairly accurate where we sit today, however, we’re sitting in a situation where the provincial government may make some changes to our environment that could impact the municipality,” he said. “Certainly going into next year when we know the impacts from the budget and the Drummond Report, we could adjust the strategic plan as an ongoing document.”
Councillors praised the work of Lillico and staff, saying the document should be a valuable resources moving forward.
“I think it hits all the objectives we have as a council and hit all the points, and it’s something that we can do indicators on every year to see where we stand,” said Coun. Jim Olender. “I think we have a framework to work with now, and I think that’s great.”
A public meeting to review the strategic plan is scheduled for Apr. 17 to allow public comment, and Lillico is aiming for final council approval in June.