The Greensboro City Council spent two days in February writing a new vision statement and coming up with a new list of priorities or strategic goals.

At the time, councilmembers, the paid facilitator who was hired to lead the discussion and City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba all agreed that having this new vision statement and these new priorities were vitally important to the future of the city.

After the City Council spent an afternoon on getting the wording just right, not an easy task when you have nine cooks stirring the pot, Jaiyeoba congratulated the City Council on their work and said, “I can definitely see, if this is what we agree on, to have a framed picture of this in every city facility so that every city employee knows that this is what is expected of them as a City of Greensboro employee.”

Six months later, these goals may exist somewhere on the City of Greensboro website, but if they do exist they are not easy to find.

What you do find if you look under “City Council Goals” on the City Council webpage is this:

“City Council Strategic Goals Update

“Greensboro’s Long Term Goals

“• Raise per capita median household income by 15% by 2025

“• For partnerships to increase committed affordable housing 0 to 30 AMI [Average Median Income] and 30 to 60 AMI by 1,000 units by 2022

“• Reduce violent crime overall by 20% by 2022

“• Bring the fund balance to 15% of budget by 2022

“• Increase by 20% the number of people that can reach their place of employment without the use of their personal vehicle by 2023

“• Implement a long-term plan for recycling by 2023

“• Implement a plan to receive the Gold Leed for cities by 2023

“Greensboro, North Carolina Purpose Driven – People Centered – Data Informed”

Clearly, those are not the goals or priorities the City Council set in February 2023, nor or they the goals the City Council set in 2022, or 2021. Those are the goals the City Council set in 2020.

The City Council and the city staff are in agreement that it is so important to set goals that it is the main topic of the only two-day retreat the City Council holds every year. However, it is evidently not important enough to update the City Council website every three years or so.

It does make one wonder just how crucial these goals are to the function of city government and if the City Council might better spend its time with a two-day retreat on the budget, the future of public transportation, how to reduce crime or learning about zoning and annexation laws.

If you’re interested in what priorities the City Council set during its two day retreat in February, you can find them in this article: