WILLIAMSBURG — The city's Goals, Initiative and Outcomes program will be a major topic at Thursday's City Council meeting.
Council members will receive a final tracking report on the 2014-16 GIOs as well as information on how the city has scored on the National Citizen Survey, which is used to help formulate and evaluate the GIOs, cumulatively from 2008 to 2016.
One of the first numbers that jumps out of that survey report is the positive rating residents gave the overall quality of life in Williamsburg: it increased by 10 percent between 2014 and 2016, going from 81 percent to 91 percent. In 2008, the first year the city participated in the survey, 77 percent of residents rated quality of life positively, which was higher than the benchmark set by the average of the more than 500 other communities that use the survey.
Other consistently high scores for the city over the years have been its overall image, which has ranged from 85 percent positive to 88 percent positive; Williamsburg as a place to live, from 85-94 percent; as a place to raise children, 76 to 91 percent; as a place to retire, 86 to 88 percent; and overall appearance, 88 to 93 percent.
Williamsburg's rating by its citizens as a place to retire has consistently been "much higher" than the benchmark set by other communities.
The final report on the previous set of GIOs evaluates how well the city has met the goals it set.
For example, under the first goal, "Character of the City," the first initiative was to improve downtown vibrancy.
Projects in support that goal include completing the Stryker Center in March, the fact that the Triangle Building is fully leased with three tenants and that the Downtown Vibrancy Marketing and Design Study and the Downtown Parking Study were funded. The parking study should report its results next month
In the same category, upgrades to the Merchant Square Wi-Fi were completed in March.
Private projects, such as Prince William Commons, Griffin Arms and Three Sisters Boutique have also gone toward meeting the goal.
The city hasn't fared that well with all its goals.
Goal 3 under Transportation, for instance, was to "reduce the number of accidents with injuries below 50." Instead, they spiked from 79 to 107 in Fiscal Year 2016.
Other public safety goals fared better. The city easily met its goal for police response times under three minutes and fire response times under five minutes.
Another goal easily cleared was to maintain the number of active library cards at more than 50 percent of the city's population, including students. There are more than 9,600 active cards in the city, more than 65 percent of the population.
The city also met financial goals by having revenues exceed budget projections, while expenses came in lower than projections, producing an operating surplus.
Vaughan can be reached at (757)345-2343.
Want to go?
City Council will meet at 2 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 11 in the Stryker Center at 412 N. Boundary St.