Hood River City Council holds goal setting Nov. 11

City council and staff will meet for their annual goal-setting session, on Saturday, Nov. 11 at Hood River Library, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For the fourth year, Salem consultant John Morgan will facilitate the meeting, in which city leaders consider a long list of goals to guide city decisions in 2018 and beyond, and hone the list to a top six.

The meeting is open to the public.

“What we deal with in goal setting is the higher part of the iceberg, that 20 percent. We try to deal with the higher (needs), but always recognize that there are things that come up (during the year),” City Manager Steve Wheeler said. “I try to update the council from time to time, and we are always aware of things that come up, because you can’t predict everything.”

Wheeler said he himself has a list of “20-plus possibilities” for goals, “but you have to prioritize as a group because you don’t have the staff capacity or resources to do them all.”

Giving high priority to the question of a long-range solution to downtown parking was specifically pointed to at a recent city council meeting.

The session includes the popular “dot exercise,” in which council and staff are given sets of colored dots and are asked to place them next to their preferred priorities, as a way of identifying primary ones.

“John Morgan starts off talking about the ‘80 percent rule,’ that is if you compare it to an iceberg, there is a whole lot of stuff that has to go on every day, from fighting fires, and issuing parking tickets, to managing utilities and it all goes on without much direction,” Wheeler said.

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