Town council approves three-year strategic plan

Town council has approved a strategic plan that will help set Ponoka’s corporate vision until 2017.

Town council has approved a strategic plan that will help set Ponoka’s corporate vision until 2017.

The plan got the green light Tuesday, Oct. 13 during council’s regular meeting. Donna Brinkworth, communications officer for the Town of Ponoka, said in an interview that the plan came out of a strategic session conducted in July that set a foundation for the corporate strategy of the town.

Four guiding principles are the basis for the document, which states: “In Ponoka, we are proud to be safe, healthy, ready and vibrant.”

“These guiding principles, we feel they will be long-lasting,” said Brinkworth.

There are five strategic pillars that every town department will use when setting priorities for projects:Vibrant, healthy lifestyle represents culture, community services and recreation;

Quality community infrastructure considers property services such as water, public works and electricity;

Sustainable economic growth guides planning and economic development;

Organizational and operational excellence defines corporate services, technology and protective services;

Leadership and good government are embodiment of the functions of the mayor and council as well as the CAO, human resources and communications.

Town departments will be setting their visions and budgets based on the corporate strategy, and once approved, will release those to residents, added Brinkworth. “That gives the staff a strong foundation for the job.”

Combining the four guiding principles with the strategic pillars was the next part of the strategic plan and Brinkworth said each year departments can look to see whether those principles fall in line with their goals. There are also some suggestions for 2026 and even 2036. Brinkworth said it would help planners in the future.

Brinkworth said the sessions were led by Jan Gehrke, a chartered mediator, who helped council and town staff come to a final consensus in the document.

During the regular council meeting, Coun. Carla Prediger requested that they conduct bi-annual review dates on the plan. Council approved the decision to set bi-annual dates at the next organizational meeting.