City of Lawrence

City Managerís Office



Thomas M. Markus, City Manger


Danielle Buschkoetter, Strategic Projects Manager


Diane Stoddard, Assistant City Manager

Casey Toomay, Assistant City Manager

Brandon McGuire, Assistant to the City Manager


July 10, 2018


Strategic Plan Update



On March 7, 2017, the City Commission adopted a strategic plan which included seven (7) critical success factors and eight (8) priority initiatives.


Since adoption, staff have identified performance indicators for each critical success factor and have developed an action plan for each priority initiative. As a reminder, some of the performance indicators will not have data for the first few progress reports, as the City has not collected that data in the past.


Progress reports will be given every four (4) months to update the City Commission on both the critical success factors as well as the priority initiatives. Additionally, after each election the strategic plan will be revisited to review the current critical success factors, priority initiatives, and the mission/vision/values. It is at this point that if the City Commission wishes to make updates they may provide staff with that direction.


Critical Success Factors

There are currently seven (7) critical success factors. Each critical success factor has a number of performance indicators associated with it. These indicators are tracked and available online at


There are a number of measures that indicate no data is available. These are measures that the City was not currently tracking but will begin to track in the future.


Priority Initiatives

There are currently eight (8) priority initiatives. Staff have developed an action plan to accomplish each priority initiative. Their timeline for completion vary significantly but the goal is to have them completed within two years.


1.    Inventory and evaluate the role of existing advisory boards and commissions, identify opportunities to consolidate or sunset as appropriate, and adopt consistent operating guidelines.

a.    Staff developed and distributed a diversity measurement tool to all advisory board members in an attempt to get a snapshot of the current level of diversity across all boards. This was a voluntary survey and the results can be found online at

b.    On June 5, 2018 Sister Cities Advisory Board was dissolved. Lawrence Sister Cities will continue as a non-profit organization in Lawrence in support of the three sister city relationships that Lawrence maintains. There will continue to be a City Commission appointee as well as a staff liaison to continue ties between the City and Sister Cities.

c.     On April 17, 2018, Lawrence Alliance was dissolved, and their responsibilities were absorbed by the Human Relations Commission.

d.    More information related to the progress on this initiative can be found in the attached staff memo. Staff has also added an item related to reviewing the City Code for the Airport Advisory Board.

2.    Review Cityís practices for ongoing professional development and align efforts to achieve excellence around the Commissionís priorities.

a.    Staff have developed a non-supervisory training program for employees interested in developing further within their current positions or has a desire to be considered for future supervisory positions as they become available. That program began in April of 2018.

b.    Staff are in the process of developing an updated performance evaluation tool that incorporates the current mission/vision/values. There have been some setbacks with this item due to turnover in the Human Resources office. Those open positions have been filled and progress of this initiative is anticipated to begin again shortly.

c.     A Succession Planning Task Force has been developed to help with implementation and policy development. This too has had some disruptions due to turnover in the Human Resources office. Those open positions have been filled and progress of this initiative is anticipated to begin again shortly.

3.    Identify barriers to having high-speed fiber throughout Lawrence and facilitate the development of the necessary infrastructure by the private sector.

a.    In 2013, the city engaged CTC Technology and Energy, an industry leading engineering and business consultancy, to assess the state of broadband service in the Lawrence market and develop a range of strategic options to enhance high-speed internet service options to consumers. An extensive report was developed and presented to the City Commission at that time.

b.    Staff is assessing current practices and policies related to high-speed fiber and identifying current barriers. Additionally, staff is developing a right-of-way policy for managing and providing access to city right-of-way and easements.

4.    Review 9th Street plans and develop a proposal to complete the road infrastructure and determine ability to add creative and artistic elements.

a.    On May 1, 2018 the City Commission approved the final design plans for the reconstruction of 9th street. The project bid was awarded in June and construction of the project is anticipated to begin shortly. This project will be completed in phases. †

5.    Develop a City facility master plan and comprehensive facility maintenance plan.

a.    Staff are in the process of developing an inventory of existing facilities, researching potential consulting firms, and researching/developing a Request for Proposal to bring forward to the City Commission for consideration in late 2018/early 2019.

6.    Develop a plan to implement priority-based budgeting and enhance communication in the annual budget process. †

a.    Staff have been in contact with the Center for Priority Based Budgeting to discuss the implementation process and timeline required to implement priority-based budgeting.

b.    Staff continues to utilize a software system, OpenGov, to help create and communicate the budget. Additionally, staff have updated the structure of the budget book which also aims to improve communication of the annual budget. OpenGov Budget Report.

7.    Develop and communicate a long-term financial strategy.

a.    Staff included a 5-year financial forecast in the budget documents that were available during the 2018 and now 2019 budget discussions. These forecasts will continue to be used in future years.

b.    On May 9, 2018 staff presented the recommended 2019-2023 Capital Improvement Plan. Additionally, staff have presented the 2019 operating budget during both the June and July work sessions.

8.    Develop a master plan for Downtown that includes needed and desirable assets, infrastructure, and uses.

a.    Staff issued a Request for Proposal for the Downtown Master Plan on February 10, 2018 with a submission deadline of March 15, 2018.

b.    Staff anticipates bringing forward a final agreement with the selected firm at the July 17, 2018 City Commission meeting.


Action Requested

Receive report and provide direction as appropriate.



Strategic Plan Framework