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City council looks to become inclusive and welcoming community for square-mile city

Wood Village councilors approved slight revisions to the city's mission, vision and strategic goals during the Tuesday, Feb. 26, council meeting.

Councilors first discussed the changes during the council's annual retreat on Saturday, Feb. 2.

One alteration involved adding the word "inclusive" to the city's mission statement.

The city's formal objective now states the city is "A unique, inclusive small city with exemplary public services, fiscal responsibility and progressive leadership providing a safe, livable community, which promotes business vitality and growth."

Wood Village City Records Manager Greg Dirks said the small change makes a big difference.

"Adding that one word is a powerful word, and makes the statement that much better," Dirks said.

During the retreat, councilors also reviewed the municipality's seven goals. They retained all the city's official aspirations, but decided to remove the term "quality housing" from the city's first objective.

"It wasn't because you don't care about quality housing — that is certainly not the case — it was the term in the past may have been used as a means to not promote other housing options," Dirks said. "You all understand that quality housing comes in many forms, shapes and styles."

Dirks noted the city's first goal — "A safe, clean, livable community with a sense of pride and strong identity" — already includes quality housing, and the term doesn't need to be explicitly stated.

The city's six other goals include: excellent police, fire and building services; high-quality, cost-effective public utilities, parks and events; long-term financial stability, economic vitality and growth; a work supportive work environment; effective government partnerships; and environmental responsibility.

The council also changed its motto from "The city that cares" to the municipality's branding tagline of "Everything you need in one square mile."

"You still want to be a 'city that cares,' but you no longer want that to be the motto," Dirks noted. "So, that is the new value statement."

When Mayor Scott Harden asked about the cost to implement these changes, City Manager Bill Peterson estimated it would take approximately $400 to change any city banners. Dirks noted most changes can be made electronically, and will only take 15 minutes of staff time.


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