Wendy Koenig

The current Town Board just completed its first year. And what a year it was.

First a pandemic, then a spate of wildfires dramatically disrupted the board’s work, altering the cyclical flow of the board’s policy setting and completion of its work products. The unprecedented nature of the disruptions necessitated that staff identify specific programmatic aspects of the Town’s strategic goals that might be put on hold until the pandemic and wildfires subsided.

Thanks to the insights and recommendations of the staff, the policies enacted by the board contributed to fiscal plans for 2021 that performed much better than predicted, improving the prospects for 2022 and beyond.

On June 7th, board members and I held the first of two study sessions devoted to developing the Strategic Plan for 2022. A second study session occurs on June 14th. The finalized Strategic Plan will inform and guide the budget and programmatic processes of the Town. Those processes specify the way your tax dollars are used.

During the study session that ran from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. last Monday, board members and I reviewed key components of the plan. The components included its mission statement, vision, and outcome areas with a corresponding policy statement for each area.

Each study sessions, occurs via Zoom and is recorded. Recordings are available for watching at your convenience. I encourage you to watch both and then share your thoughts and suggestions with board members at the beginning of their two regularly scheduled board meetings this month. (Note: public comments are not taken during study sessions).

Another way to contribute to the Town’s strategic planning is participation in the 2021 Citizen Survey. The scientific survey will be sent to a random sample of 1,600 town residents this summer and made available on the web to everyone else. The survey uses the National Community Survey template. Its design enables board members and staff to compare the results with previous results and with results from hundreds of cities throughout the United States as well as the past results from Estes Park. Presently, the plan is for results from the survey to be presented to members of the Town Board next October.

I’m looking forward to the Town Board’s second year. Hopefully, its work won’t get disrupted as it was last year. As your duly elected representative, I am committed to protect and advance the common good for the townspeople of Estes Park. Toward that end, I look forward to your enthusiastic participation in the processes through which plans for the future of your town are made. Let’s work together to move forward together.

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