We wholeheartedly support Bill Johnson for Planning Board. His proven ability to bring people of different views together in support of a common goal, his project-management skills, his work ethic, and, in particular, his clear view of long-term strategy will benefit the Planning Board and the town of Harvard.
An example of Bill’s strategic vision is the five-year strategic planning process he introduced to town government. Until two years ago, long-range budgeting for the town was particularly difficult for the Finance Committee and the newly created Capital Planning and Investment Committee, as there was little insight into the long-range strategies and tactics for the various town departments, boards, and committees. The master plan was not a useful reference point, as it had not been updated since its writing in 2002.
In the summer of 2011, Bill proposed an initiative that every town operating group create a five-year strategic plan to be reviewed and updated annually. He architected a simple system, demonstrated its use with the fiscal 2012 Board of Selectmen goals, and championed its successful adoption through the all-boards meeting process. For fiscal 2013, all groups submitted a five-year strategic plan with their fiscal 2013 five-year operating and capital budgets. Both the Finance Committee and CPIC found this to be valuable, making long-range budgeting far more effective.
In the summer of 2012, Bill proposed adding measurement of progress-against-goals for the fiscal year just ended, which was embraced by all departments, boards and committees and served as the basis for fiscal 2014 five-year plan submissions.
In the long history of the Finance Committee and the more recent history of CPIC, there has never been a more useful long-term planning approach. Kudos to Bill for championing a planning process and tool that has achieved broad acceptance, provides visibility into synergy between town departments and committees, and serves as a platform for measuring concrete results.
Bill would be a great addition to Planning Board because facilitating the development of objective, long-term strategic plans for the town of Harvard is exactly the successful work that he has been doing for the past two years.
ALICE von LOESECKE