Board of Selectmen post FY21 Goals for public tracking

by beth on September 10, 2020

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As promised, the Board of Selectmen have implemented a new structure to allow public tracking of their annual goals.

On the final page of this week’s meeting packet, the board posted a list of the forty goals they recently adopted for this fiscal year.

The list is in the form of a chart with columns which will be updated in future packets to note which goals are “In Progress”, had “Recent Steps” taken, or are considered “Completed”. Their publicly discussed intent is to include the list with updates in regular future meeting packets.

I’ve experienced multiple instances of deja vu when selectmen agree to tackle an issue in the following year that they tabled in a previous year while making the same promise. So, I consider the move a good step for accountability and transparency.

This year’s tasks are grouped by issues related to Boards and Committees, Community Initiatives, Employees, Infrastructure, Long Range/Strategic Planning, Municipal Finance, and Organizational.

Here is their list of FY 2021 Goals: 

  • Boards and Committees
    • OML training and support/training for running Open Meetings.
    • Promote and enforce Town Email Use Policy.
    • Update, consolidate and promote compliance with general policies.
    • Encourage and provide support for televising meetings.
    • Encourage and provide support for composite agendas and packets.
    • Enhance informational outreach and recruiting for volunteers (forum).
    • Conduct public comment at beginning & end of meetings
    • Review and update descriptions and charges.
  • Community Initiatives
    • Coordinate and oversee Downtown Initiative.
    • Coordinate communication/roundtables with local businesses.
    • Pursue PILOT initiatives, including community center and projects.
    • Pursue “bike friendly” policies and explore Biking Committee.
    • 300th Anniversary planning, including Committee creation.
  • Employees
    • Create Employee Handbook.
    • Update job descriptions for B0S staff.
    • B0S review of annual staff performance reviews.
    • Review staffing and B0S office organization.
    • Analyze Personnel Board/Town Administrator authority.
  • Infrastructure
    • Explore municipal electric plant.
    • Nati Grid parcel 54-40
    • Assimilate Pine Hill Road into Town water (via MWRA).
  • Long Range/Strategic Planning
    • Explore establishing grant writing position(s).
    • BoS training, reporting and hiring initiatives re: diversity and inclusion.
  • Municipal Finance
    • Additional approval/oversight on appropriation line items.
    • Schedule quarterly budget updates (Finance Director).
    • Establish budget narratives, including long-term impacts.
    • Establish B0S budget liaisons.
    • Communicate B0S position to departments re: new FTEs.
    • Establish long-term capital plans (with Capital Committee).
    • Explore generating additional commercial tax revenue.
    • Identify and establish a roster of Town service contracts.
    • Review contracted services and explore re-bidding.
    • Maximize potential Covid-19 reimbursements and grants.
    • Coordinated budget discussions with Advisory, Capital and Schools.
  • Organizational
    • Quarterly newsletter.
    • Explore public safety regional dispatch.
    • Evaluate organizational processes: postage; mailings; data exchanges.
    • Budget software implementation.
    • Pursue policies and projects for 40B threshold.
    • Customer service survey re: Town departments.

For more context around the goals listed above. . .

Some came out of a July discussion I covered in a prior post. Others came out of the continued discussion at their August 4th meeting. You can find the minutes from that meeting here and the video here. (There were audio difficulties making it hard to decipher the first 15 minutes of that recorded discussion, but it clears up here.)

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