Burleson increases transparency with new website
Plus, a recap of Monday's city council meeting and a weekend preview
City Council Meeting Recap:
City council moved to direct staff to draft letters in support of and in opposition to multiple Texas legislative bills at the city council meeting Monday at City Hall.
Council moved to direct staff to draft letters in support of House Bills 471, 718, 2455 and 2468 and in opposition to House Bills 14, 2127 and 4082 and Senate Bills 369, 1252, 1412, 1787, 1810, 2035 and 2037.
The bills the council is in support of fall under the public safety category, and the bills it opposes fall under preemption, land use and debt, according to deputy city attorney Matt Ribitzki.
Mayor Chris Fletcher, Phil Anderson, city council Place 2, and Larry Scott, city council Place 4, were sworn in at the meeting after winning their respective elections May 6.
Exiting council members Rick Green, Place 2, Tamara Payne, Place 4, and Ronnie Johnson, Place 6, were presented with tokens of appreciation from city secretary Amanda Campos.
Mike Jones, president of the Burleson Professional Firefighters Association, presented a $3,000 donation check on behalf of the association to the Burleson Center for ASD.
It was city manager Bryan Langley’s last meeting as city manager. Langley will be succeeded by deputy city manager Tommy Ludwig.
Fletcher proclaimed the week of May 21 through May 27 as National Public Works Week in Burleson.
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Russell Farm will host Texas Heritage Festival Music Night Friday from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Russell Farm Art Center.
The Burleson Fire Department will host “Super Safety Saturday,” a family-friendly safety event Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at Texas Health Neighborhood Care and Wellness.
Burleson increases transparency with new website
The City of Burleson launched a website May 9 with the plan to give citizens a better understanding of how the city operates and the results that are being achieved.
Former city manager Bryan Langley said the website is meant to be a dashboard providing insight into how the city is running.
City of Burleson customer service director Jesse Elizondo is excited the city launched the site.
“A big win was just getting it out to where the public can see it and see all the things that everyone’s doing and what they’re tracking and what they’re trying to get to and who’s close and what the trends are quarter-over-quarter, year-over-year,” Elizondo said.
The website displays the goals that make up the city’s strategic plan and the key-performance metrics of those goals.
For example, the website shows how the city is performing in increasing wages and the amount of high-paying jobs in the city, which are key-performance metrics of the city’s goal to “attract and retain top-tier businesses to promote high-quality economic development by expanding and diversifying the tax base; and creating jobs that allow our residents to work where they live.”
These key-performance metrics are identified from a high-level view of the city’s strategic plan, Elizondo said.
The strategic-planning process involved citizen participation and several discussions with the city council, Langley said.
“I think it starts with the citizens,” said Alex Phillips, City of Burleson economic development director. “Council kind of molds those goals and what their strategic plan is, and then we get policy from council.”
The budget that funds the initiatives being measured is citizen-driven, Elizondo said.
The website serves two “main purposes,” Elizondo said. Those purposes are to view the city’s departments’ clearly-defined goals and utilize them administratively and to be transparent to citizens.
“We work for the public and so we always want to have our information available to them,” Langley said.
This website was Langley’s vision, Elizondo said.
Every department provides the background, explanation and calculation of its respective metrics, which are mostly based on industry standards, Elizondo said.
The key-performance indicators help to make sure departments such as economic development stay on track and keep them focused on particular areas, including average wages, Phillips said.
Sharing this information with the public allows everyone to see how well the city is performing. It’s good to share the city’s performance with the public even if the performance isn’t good because communicating shortcomings allows one to address what’s needed, Langley said.
“If you don’t know how well you’re doing, it’s hard to manage that,” Langley said.
There are plans to expand the site by displaying individual projects that are working toward the listed goals.
Phillips said he could see the KPI metrics being part of the end-of-year document that goes out to citizens.
Which of the website’s listed metrics are you most interested in?