Monday, July 11, 2011

Summertime Goings On

So, here we are deep into Summer 2011. If we were in elementary or secondary school we might argue it just began, but I think for adults more and more the lines of summertime blur and extend. So, in my mind we are deep in the summer. It is the All Star Break for the baseball season, so it must be the middle of summer.

I was thinking last night about summer projects. One I really want to tackle this summer is scanning documents and cleaning up some files and paperwork in the office. I know this has been on the back burner for what feels like eons. It is an ongoing battle to review and reduce the amount of paper we have in the office. Even better if we can weed out extraneous stuff and then scan it and make it available to the public via the internet and save us all time.

Another project is the Capital Improvements Program. There are two elements to this, one regrouping and redefining the 2013-2018 plan for presentation to the Planning Board and City Council in the fall. The second element is using the web to track progress on the FY 2012 projects as they get underway this year. I need to pin down some specifics on how we will do this.

A third project is the ever present review of zoning and land use regulations. A month ago we had a meeting with consultants from the Environmental Protection Agency, and their consultants who were retained to perform an audit of our regulations. They suggested areas we can look to make changes to encourage sustainability. I will be looking over these recommendations and bring them forward to the Planning Board towards the end of the summer.

Catching up is another "always on the list" task. In this case I need to catch up on some reading of journals and trends. Additionally, we need to review some procedures for the CDBG program and for the way we investigate code complaints.

A summer project is to determine where some of the sustainability programs we started in the winter will go now that we no longer have a Sustainability Coordinator. As I mentioned last month, we did not have funding in the, now, current budget to keep that position in play. I will be reviewing the tasks and programming started and evaluating how we can maintain some if not all of them.

So, that's my summer to be. Oh, that and one more project. To use this blog to answer some questions about why areas are zoned, and to also update people on existing programs, such as the Fast Trans, and Pay N Display parking program. For that last item, I will be bringing Bill Simmons from the Police Department in for an interview, as Bill is the Parking Manager for the City.

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