I am very grateful for the dedicated service the Jones County Supervisors provide the residents of Jones County. We are approaching a new calendar year with two new members and one re-elected member of the Board of Supervisors. My perception is that as the new board convenes this may be a time to review and consider some questions as the board begins to work as a new team to guide Jones County’s 20,000 residents.
A question which I believe deserves consideration: Should the supervisors set county-wide goals? If yes, what evidence will be collected and shared with the residents of the county to describe the progress with the goals?
My perspective is that every complex organization especially with nearly $20 million annual budget should have clear and measurable goals, share the goals and share the progress with the public. It is the right and need that the public is aware of the direction(s) which the leaders are striving to achieve.
Further we are in times which are rapidly changing in terms of business, health, and income status of residents and how is the county meeting these needs. Some potential further considerations are how does the county partner with local employers, utility companies, economic development, and Kirkwood Community College to further the economic, social and health of all residents of the county.
My hope is that the budget is the road map to ensure the county’s priorities are being achieved. The major budget targets should be aligned with the county’s goals, and progress should be reported to residents multiple times during a year in a clear and succinct manner.
The record setting voter turnout in the recent election may be a reflection of future citizen participation and input into how Jones County will move forward to be attractive for the future. I am confident this region has a bright future. To ensure the positive future, it will require the leadership from the Board of Supervisors and engagement of citizens representing the diverse and future needs of the county’s residents.