Manchester to air plans at meetings

August 17, 1993|By Katherine Richards | Katherine Richards,Staff Writer

The Manchester Town Council will attempt to set priorities for the next few years during a strategic planning workshop tonight and tomorrow night in the town hall.

The meetings, scheduled to run from 7 p.m. until 10 p.m., are open to the public but will not be televised.

"I want to get people to brainstorm and just bring out all the issues," said Town Manager Terry L. Short, who came up with the idea for the workshop. "Councils don't tend to sit down and do this."

"We needed to do it," Manchester Mayor Earl A. J. "Tim" Warehime Jr. said yesterday. "I hope that we can lay down some concrete ideas for the next five years."

Mr. Short said the first thing the mayor and council will do at the workshop will be to develop a mission statement.

Then they will set priorities for the town for the coming years, he said. For each project, he said, they will discuss what needs to be done, who will be responsible for the work, how much it will cost and where the town will get the money.

"It's a good business practice," he said. "Next year's budget should flow out of it."

He said this is a good time for strategic planning because council elections were held in May and the current mayor and council will have two years to work on the priorities they set.

Mr. Short said issues to be discussed at the workshop will include the town's water supply, the capacity of its sewage treatment plant, problems with its sewer lines, the proposed Route 30 bypass, commercial development and the town's growth.

He declined to specify which problems he considers most important, saying that priorities should be set during the planning process.

"I hope we can get something down on paper as to what we're going to do with our springs," Mr. Warehime said.

New drinking water regulations soon will force Manchester to replace the town's springs with wells or install a filtering system for the spring water.

Councilman John A. Riley said yesterday that the most useful thing the council could discuss during the workshop is where the money for the projects will come from.

Mr. Short said residents often raise questions about the town's growth and that the Town Council might want to consider limiting growth.

"You don't want to continually grow by default," he said. "You need to make a decision."

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