I remember the first trip I took on behalf of the city after I was elected to represent District 1 in Blue Springs. The trip was to attend a National League of Cities conference in Charlotte North Carolina.

During my time in office I had the privilege to attend numerous educational seminars designed to help a city councilman understand issues facing communities all over the United States. Attending these continuing education seminars eventually lead to the honor of receiving a Bronze Leadership Fellow award from the NLC. These training opportunities are vital to the continuing education of our City Council, giving each of them the tools to make better decisions on behalf of their constituents.

I was pleased to hear that the City Council recently held a strategic planning retreat at the Elms Resort & Spa in Excelsior Springs Missouri. I read The Examiner’s editorial that delivered some criticism for the cost of the retreat, but I disagree. I would remind them that the entire council attended this planning session, and in light of all of the talk of being fiscally conservative from certain councilmen, I’m certain this junket was necessary. I commend all of the council in making strategic planning a priority.

It has been years since our City Council has undertaken a serious strategic planning effort, and I compliment Mayor Carson Ross for having the wisdom to undertake such a venture on behalf of our citizens. Combined with the promised review of the Comprehensive Plan, the city will soon be positioned to provide much needed guidance to the development community on their plans for the further development of our city.

According to The Examiner’s article about the meeting, the council spent 15 hours in discussion during the retreat. I share the desire of many of our citizens to hear and read the public report of progress and planning that occurred at this important meeting. I look forward to the presentation of the results at a future council meeting, which we can all watch on Comcast Channel 7 or download from the City Web site at www.BlueSpringsGov.com.

Don’t forget, this Saturday is the Community Pancake Breakfast at the Steamin’ Bean. Wanda and I are looking forward to seeing our friends and neighbors as well as some current and former elected officials at this event. 

Tickets are available for purchase in advance on-line at www.AboutBlueSprings.com or just come join us from 8 a.m. until 11 a.m.