This week Farmington City Council approved 2018 council priorities and outlined potential city projects on the horizon for the upcoming year.
After a lengthy Jan. 12 work session discussion where the council discussed a wide variety of issues, new priorities were consolidated to create broad level 2018 priorities.
Farmington City Council approved them Monday, Feb. 5, in general terms. Council will address the budget as each project progresses. The Economic Development Authority also will play a role.
Some priorities were incorporated with 2017 priorities. The high level 2017 goals were laid out to increase partnerships and improve financial issues and city service delivery.
"Your desire to continue to see the downtown redevelopment plan continue to evolve and that is the only new development area, while at the same time we have included the expansion of businesses and new business coming into Farmington in both City Council and EDA actions," said David McKnight, city administrator.
The first priority is to develop and encourage the expansion of residential, commercial and industrial properties and continue to follow and implement the Downtown Redevelopment Plan.
"We want to support the expansion of current businesses and recruitment of new businesses through City Council and EDA actions and program, and we want to encourage the EDA to continue to review and develop programs that enhance our business community," McKnight said.
The council will continue to build and forge partnerships opportunities with existing partners and new partners this year.
"We want to work with the school district to understand their future plans for the two properties they own downtown," McKnight said.
The city would like to partner with businesses, organizations and families to start to build the Rambling River Center Plaza project.
City staff will work to develop 2018 legislative priorities and share goals with the legislators, McKnight said.
"The liquor store will strive to increase partnerships to increase per ticket sales and look at fresh ideas to attract customers," he added.
City staff will continue to work with Dakota County Regional Chamber of Commerce to increase the membership and city participation in Farmington. The city will work with the local business community to provide opportunities for partnerships and sponsorships.
"We will continue to build our relationships with Dakota County, our Met Council representative, our three neighboring townships and our elected state representatives," McKnight said.
The council will continue to work toward taking steps to reach continued financial, fiscal excellence.
"We will officially approve the 2030 Finance Plan and related capital improvement plans as a part of the 2019 budget process," McKnight said.
The city will strive to improve all levels of service delivery in every area of public works, public safety and city services and programs to be able to provide core government services at high-quality levels.
Special projects, staff tasks
The city will implement, design and post "way finding" signs to direct potential pedestrian and driver traffic toward the downtown area, Highway 3 and Pilot Knob Road business districts.
The city also plans to refresh city welcoming monument signs at city entrances, clean the city signs and add lighting features.
"City staff will remind the City Council on decisions they make that will have multi-year impacts and the city will continue efforts to make the organization an employer of choice," McKnight said.
City staff will address the l priorities and complete 10 tasks outlined in the near future.
The city plans to implement a monthly newspaper column in this newspaper, the Farmington Independent Rosemount Town Pages, McKnight said.
City staff plan to expand Rambling River Center Coffee Chats to increase communication between residents and city government officials.
City staff will review downtown parking with the addition of the USDA office in city hall that may impact parking for guests visiting the office.
The staff will review winter parking rules and yard parking ordinances.
"We will find out the sale price of the Farmington Printing building," McKnight said. The building is located on the north side of the existing Rambling River Center.
McKnight added "We want to develop a process for businesses that have a public failure in other local communities where the message is sent that they are welcome in Farmington."