Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Community Image

Has your week been as crazy as mine? Work is going so well, in fact I'm traveling to Southern California Sunday evening. It's a great opportunity! It's just the timing with the upcoming election is less than optimal, but me and my committee with work it out. I have such great support from the friends and family!

The campaign is going well. I've been out every weekend, knocking on doors and meeting residents. So many have expressed surprised when they meet me. One resident said he's lived here over 40 years and doesn't recall a mayoral candidate going door-to-door. Thank you all for such support and a warm welcome!

So, one of the ideas I'm most excited to bring to Woodson Terrace is a formalized method of tracking your visits and phone calls to City Hall. I plan to put in place a mechanism for the staff who answer the phones to fill in a short form:

  • Who called?
  • What was the inquiry or concern?
  • Was it resolved?
  • Was is referred (and to whom)?
  • Do I need to follow up?

With a database like this, we'll be able to track and trend all sorts of issues reported by our citizens. And it will ensure that I'm kept apprised of all the issues. I promise to read each and every one. This idea is just the tip of iceberg when it comes to doing things different around town and City Hall, in a positive fashion. One area me and my friends have put some thought into is the aspect of Community Image. Rebranding the community will take some time, but it starts with ALL of us instilling some pride when we talk about where we live or where we're from. The T-shirts we made up for Neighborhood Watch have on the back "I'm From The Woo and I'm Proud." We have a wonderful town, and it is a duty of each of us to talk up the area. If you hear someone, your kids or neighbors, talking about living in "the hood" please correct them!

The more involved we get in our community, the more pride each of us can take in its positive change!

An immediate change we can make is to the signage around the city, in particular the sign for Woodson Plaza and at other of our businesses. It would be nice to explore a digital sign or marquee in front of City Hall.

One idea told to me by a friend and resident, is to focus on a few city blocks, one month at a time, and by using volunteers with a detailed plan, clean up the streets and houses on those blocks. Take time to help those residents who may need some extra help to get their corner of the world straightened up. Work proactively to bring those households in compliance with city ordinances.

We are planning to call this program Four Blocks of Focus. We hope this plan will address the overall goal to:

* Sustain or Improve Property Values
* Improve Code reviews and enforcement

My bullet points over the next few weeks leading up to the election will overlap, and that's intentional. One other idea for when I'm elected as mayor --- I plan to create and send out Welcome Packets. I would send a letter and packet to all new residents, and the packet would include information about our City and surrounding resources. It would also include coupons to local businesses and encourage them become a regular customer.

The overlap? Building pride in the community, fostering positive feelings about their move to Woodson Terrace, and instilling a reminder to Shop Local, keeping as many dollars as we can in our community and North County. This is the idea behind establishing a strong community we can take pride in. A strong, stable community is key to keeping families from moving away and is appealing to people looking for a place to call home.