The Portales City Council met at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Memorial Building to discuss strategic planning. The following was accomplished:
- Councilors made a list of Portales' strengths, which included citizens, city employees, fiscal responsibility, military affairs, schools, health care and recreation.
Councilors agreed that city employees are dedicated and friendly with a good work ethic.
- Councilors discussed finding a way to fund an employee of the month program to show city employees they are appreciated with a gift, such as a plaque or other item.
City Manager Tom Howell said he would look into funding possibilities for the project.
Mayor Sharon King and Councilor Keith Thomas agreed city employees should nominate each other for the title.
- Councilors made a list of Portales' weaknesses, which included roads and streets, trash, abandoned homes, traffic flow and lack of family entertainment.
Councilor Dianne Parker said citizens need to be better educated on code enforcements and the city needs to better enforce them. Other councilors agreed.
King suggested spotting code violations, such as hazardous trash, and public education on them need to be more of a team effort with city officials and employees.
- Councilors made a list of opportunities to take advantage of working on in Portales, which included finalizing and implementing the Industrial Park Master Plan, a movie theater, working on better landscaping in Portales and educating residents on it and growing living space for Cannon Air Force Base personnel and Eastern New Mexico University students and personnel.
Thomas, along with councilors Ron Jackson and Oscar Robinson agreed to begin working on having a lawn and garden show in Portales to educate residents on landscaping and Xeroscaping.
Councilors said they will continue to pursue bringing a movie theater back to Portales.
Councilor Matt Hunton asked if the city had ever considered a road bypass for semi trucks.
King said the matter had previously been looked into and turned over to the New Mexico Department of Transportation to hopefully be resolved at some point.
- Councilors made a list of threats to Portales, which included water shortages, stray animals, lack of growth in the community with CAFB and ENMU personnel and cultural affairs and events.
King said she thinks certain events put on by the city should be taken over by the chamber of commerce.
Thomas, vice president of the chamber board, said he would present the chamber with a list of these events.
- Councilors discussed bringing Portales entities closer together for the benefit of the community.
Such entities included the city, the county, ENMU, Portales schools, the chamber of commerce and more.
— Compiled by PNT staff writer Alisa Boswell.