During a special workshop Tuesday at the Marathon Government Center, the Monroe County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) discussed issues of community concern and County priorities to provide direction to County staff for the Monroe County Strategic Plan and Fiscal Year 2022 budgeting process.
"A lot of these priorities rolled over from the 2019 meetings," said Senior Director of Strategic Planning Kimberly Matthews. "It is very important for us to ask the community what their concerns are and bring them back to the commissioners."
The Strategic Plan is a five-year document that guides the scope and direction of County services based on priorities established by the BOCC and with extensive input from the public and Monroe County's senior management team. The plan enables all County divisions and departments to focus its actions, resources, and budgets on goals and projects that support the County's future goals. The strategic plan was done for 2020-2025, but this workshop was held to make sure the plan is still relevant.
The County held five virtual town hall meetings to allow the community to voice any concerns for this workshop. The town halls had 85 participants highlighting traffic and road safety on U.S. 1 as the number one concern, followed by growth control, water quality, and affordable housing.
The goal is to strike a balance in the County between quality of life, the economy, and the environment. The commissioners discussed solutions for the Upper and Lower Keys and discussed traffic, building, and housing concerns. No formal decisions were made at the workshop.
Matthews will incorporate the suggestions and comments of the BOCC to update the priorities of the strategic plan. She also works with each of the 24 county departments to go over the priorities of the BOCC to achieve the County's goals.
An extensive round of meetings will be held again before the formal 2025-2030 planning process takes place. "Strategic planning is about homing in the concerns and priorities of the community and our commissioners," said Matthews. “This is just a midway refresh to ensure the priorities are still aligned.”