The start of a new year brings optimism and goal setting for many, including the Lehi Mayor and City Council. 2021 will also include an election for Mayor and the seats currently held by Councilman Chris Condie and Councilman Paul Hancock.
The City Council and Mayor have responded with the following top three goals among the list of long priorities for the year, one of which is a stretch goal for 2021.
Mayor Mark Johnson
In my forecast for 2020, I set three primary goals for the year. First, to focus on our regional transportation plan, second, to initiate our major park designs and third, to investigate the demand and operational parameters of a city-wide fiber optic network. Despite all the interruptions of last year, the city successfully fulfilled these objectives.
All this work from last year needs to now move forward by analyzing specific details, receiving public input, responding to council questions and the investigation and/or pursuit of funding options. Some of this is in progress but will continue in 2021. My goal is to stay focused on these three issues that have had much public concern; better transportation options in the future, regional park solutions that will meet the demands of the public and fiber network connectivity that will serve all areas of Lehi fairly.
I have been pleased with the efforts of the staff from UDOT, UTA, MAG and the WFRC as well as the consultants who have been engaged in evaluating and proposing solutions to the transit and transportation problems we have faced in our area. Two new committees representing Utah County and the Point of the Mountain have worked hard to solidify a future transit mode and corridor that will be functional and cost effective.
We have also acquired the land for regional parks and open space preservation that will allow for both sports and leisure activities. Plans for those will soon be presented to the public and city council for approval.
Finally, if we have learned anything from 2020 it is that telecommuting is effective and many of our businesses believe it will continue to be an important part of their organizations. The plan for fiber network delivery to all of Lehi is important not only because it will provide everyone an equal opportunity to communicate from home but through a wholesale model, residents will have more internet service provider (ISP) options which will encourage realistic competition in the marketplace.
Councilman Chris Condie
1. To come to a resolution on how to fund our two regional parks at Peck/Family Park and Mellor-Rhodes.(Stretch goal)
2. To ensure that the citywide fiber internet project has a successful start and is going strong into 2022.
3. To be more visible and accessible on various social media platforms. Particularly Facebook and Instagram.
Councilman Mike Southwick
1. The first goal I would like to touch on would be fiber for Lehi City. We just passed the bond so we can start the process for fiber. There are a lot of decisions that need to be made this year in order to be able to provide this for the residents. This will not happen if we don’t keep working in a timely manner so Lehi residents will have the option to have fiber in their homes.
2. Next we still need to continue working on revitalization of Main Street–working to bring new businesses to that area and working with those that are already here. We have a lot of history on Main Street and need to continue to keep that area growing and prospering.
3. As I attended a play my granddaughter was in this last year at the Arts Center, I realized what a great opportunity citizens of Lehi have to participate in the arts. Those who lead the program do such a great job, but we need a bigger place or expand what we already have to accommodate more people and give those participating and who want to participate more opportunities with the arts. It would be great to put some of the City resources back into the Arts building. Thanks to all the citizens who give so much of their time and talent into the Arts program. It would be great to have a bigger facility.
These are a few goals that I feel are important.
Councilwoman Katie Koivisto
1. Encourage residents to participate and vote in the 2021 city council elections.
2. Find one private business/entity to donate funds for the build out and/or restoration of a city park.
3. For my stretch goal, I want to work with city planning in developing and implementing a strategy plan that addresses the shortage, and affordability, of homes in Lehi. My focus will include the following:
-Encouraging developers to develop responsibly within the general plan guidelines. Lehi City staff has done a terrific job (and has spent countless hours) developing the general plan map for Lehi residents. I will help developers understand the importance of building within their provided zoning guidelines.
-Find creative ways to make the one-time, $4,000+ impact fee for ADUs more affordable for Lehi residents, while addressing Lehi city’s responsibility to evaluate the financial impact these units have on residential sewage, water, and various infrastructure systems.
-Cultivate said creative measures in helping Lehi achieve more affordable housing options, and a higher score card for the state of Utah required “Moderate Income Housing Plan.”
Councilman Paul Hancock
With this potentially being my last year on the city council, there are a lot of things that go through my mind regarding what I’ve been a part of over the last seven years that are at various stages of completion. With that in mind, here are some goals I have for this year:
1. Dry Creek Lake: With the opening this year I want to make sure that we have a solid analysis following the first season of operations. My hope is that through this we can ensure we make any needed adjustments to minimize the impact on the surrounding residents and make it the great resource for years to come.
2. Trails: Continue the build out of the trails system in Traverse Mountain and throughout the rest of the city.
3. City Fiber Project: While the project itself won’t be complete, there are decisions I would like to see wrapped up this year. I’d like to ensure that we have the framework in place of who (City or private sector) is going to managing various aspects of the network from the build out, ongoing maintenance after completion, customer service, and ISP providers.
Councilwoman Paige Albrecht
1. My primary goal as Councilwoman will continue to be the safety of Lehi’s citizens. In the coming year, I will work with city staff as we plan for a new fire station for the rapidly growing west side of Lehi. I will also coordinate with our police and fire departments to audit our compensation and coverage so that we continue to have the very best first responders in the state of Utah.
2. Our amazing city staff has their hands full keeping up with all of our new infrastructure needs, but amid all the growth there are many areas of Lehi that are now past due for replacements and upgrades. I will work with city departments to determine where we should concentrate more time and funding, so that all our neighborhoods have well-maintained sidewalks and roads, with reliable and redundant sources citywide for our water supply (culinary and irrigation) and power.
3. The Lehi Free Press asked that our third goal be a “stretch,” so here it is: I want to create better cooperation, communication, and coordination between Lehi City and the Alpine School Board. Historically, the two entities have functioned separately, leading to some past problems, especially with planning for student numbers and needs. We need to work together more to build the best schools in the right places.