Skip to Main Content

Taking the Field: Charting our tomorrow 

by Paul Meyer, NCLM Executive Director 

I’m happy to say that the strategic visioning process is well underway!

Under the direction of our Board of Directors, the League is working with the University of North Carolina School of Government on a strategic process that will develop a preferred future vision for cities and towns in our state.  

The process will help determine what actions are necessary to position municipalities to achieve the vision they have designed and desire for success in the near future, and beyond to 2030.

The process will engage a wide variety of stakeholders, and is outward-facing, inclusive, expansive and transparent.  City officials, strategic business community partners, legislators, county officials and League staff will all be engaged in this discussion so that we can forecast possible scenarios for city government and determine what future roles and functions cities should play in helping move North Carolina forward. Municipal government is the level of government that is closest to the citizens. An inclusive visioning process will hopefully lead to a more comprehensive, shared method of how to capitalize on the role of cities and towns to improve economic conditions and quality of life for citizens and businesses.

The first key input session came with our Board of Directors at the August Board Meeting. The Board had a great discussion where they not only offered their thoughts on their vision for cities and towns but provided key feedback that will help shape the rest of the process moving forward.

Our annual conference, CityVision 2014: Charting our Tomorrow, provides lots of opportunities for members to hear about and participate in the process. Rebecca Ryan, noted futurist and economist, along with the School of Government, will lead the opening session and two concurrent sessions on Monday where we will talk visioning.  In addition, the Legislative Action Committees meeting on Sunday and the Managers Strategic Visioning Input Session on Monday will both give attendees a chance to participate.  We’ll also have folks floating throughout the conference engaging attendees in conversations and short surveys about the conference.  

Over the next few months, the process will continue through an online survey, continued discussions with the Board of Directors, in-person interviews with legislators, conversations with our partners on the county side and regional focus groups with members.  The School of Government will present their results and recommendations to the Board of Directors in May 2015.

At the end of the process, we will have a path for the League and understand how we, collectively as municipal leaders, can maximize our efforts to move municipalities forward and achieve the vision we all will have worked to outline.  These are very exciting times indeed!

I value everyone’s commitment to improving our municipalities and our state, and I want to make sure the League is supporting those efforts in the most impactful way possible. I look forward to hearing your thoughts and feelings on our future as we forge ahead together.