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Council unveils strategic city plan

October 6, 2010
By DAVE GOSSETT, Staff writer

STEUBENVILLE - City Council will consider approval of a 10-year "Vision for Our Future" strategic plan when it meets in regular session next week.

Councilman at large Eddie Joe Chanoski introduced the 12-page document at council's sunshine meeting Tuesday.

City Manager Cathy Davison said the strategic plan is the result of two days of retreat sessions attended by council members and Mayor Domenick Mucci.

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City Manager Talks Future

"This strategic plan sets up a vision statement citing eight goals for us to meet in the future. We will be looking at financial and economic development, infrastructure, our employees as well as the service we provide to our residents," explained Davison.

She said including the plan in an ordinance makes council accountable to city residents.

According to the plan's opening vision statement, in 10 years the city will be known as, "a city that while smaller in population acknowledges and finds solutions to the leading social issues that affect the quality of life."

The statement also notes the city should focus on embracing public and private institutions of higher learning in order to foster a positive relationship that supports the local business and cultural climate.

The community also will be known, "as a city that inclusively recognizes and embraces the racial and cultural diversity of its community, that is business friendly and invites diversified business development leading to economic opportunity for its citizens, that is financially sound and responsible while preserving its aesthetic appeal and sustaining quality services to the public provided by committed employees and talented citizens and as a city that has meaningful and productive partnerships with agencies and neighboring communities in order to develop more efficient ways to enhance services."

Also, according to the vision statement, Steubenville will also be known as a city, "with progressive growth and development that embraces its history, beauty and sense of community."

Davison said the strategic plan will consider eight goals during the next decade:

The development and implementation of a long-term water and sewer infrastructure replacement plan in order to revitalize and accommodate the current and future needs of the community that includes a long-term street plan for Lovers Lane, Brady Avenue and University Boulevard.

Provide an environment that is safe, efficient and cost effective in which our employees work. That goal includes investigating the purchase of a new or slightly used refuse packer and investigating the location of a transfer station close to the city.

Strengthen and diversify the economy through collaboration and planning. That goal will call for city leaders to research the possible annexation of Pottery Addition and industrial park property, meet with property owners north of U.S. Route 22 in order to begin the development of the property and continue to collaborate with the county and area communities to support regionalization.

Create efforts to promote cleanup in the community. That goal calls for the enforcement of the separation of gutters and downspouts from the city's storm sewers, encourage residents to adopt vacant parcels and tot lots and create a community cleanup day in the spring and fall.

Create a well-trained and diverse work force that will include job sharing language in future union contracts and create temporary employee positions for long-term absences by permanent employees.

Create an ability to respond to emergencies on a local and regional basis that will call for a partnership with the Red Cross, Jefferson County Sheriff's Department as well as local police and fire departments to organize an emergency response team.

Create a community environment that is safe and healthy. The plan calls for the creation of a community lifestyle program in partnership with the city health department, Trinity Medical System and the YMCA to promote personal health behaviors and the establishment of senior programs in the recreation department and the installation of a permanent shelter at Piece of Pie Park.

Create an atmosphere of fiscal and regulatory responsibility. That goal calls for the city to pursue insurance claims for accidents handled by the fire department, investigate the refinancing of debt and be more aggressive with the collection of income taxes and utility bills.

"This is a business plan for the city, and our business plan is a living document. We will update our plan as we move forward," said Davison.

In other business, 4th Ward Councilman David Fortunato proposed an ordinance at Tuesday's sunshine meeting authorizing the city manager to make an application for the state grant from the Ohio Public Works Commission.

According to City Engineer Michael Dolak, the city is seeking $177,000 to be used toward the paving of approximately a half mile of Sinclair Avenue.

"The county paved Permars Run Road this year and we cooperated with them to pave the road within the city limits to John Scott Highway. We hope to pave Sinclair Avenue from John Scott Highway to Lovers Lane in 2011," explained Dolak.

(Gossett can be contacted at

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