Letters to the Editor

MAYOR'S BEAT | Langley’s top official lists city budget priorities for 2014

By Fred McCarthy

1. Economic development

2. Approachable responsive government

3. Planned capital improvements

As I stressed in campaigning for mayor, our priorities for 2014 are economic development, enhanced communications, and delivery of local public works. The recent series of community forums stressed economic development and renewal. The challenge now is to build on these efforts over the next year, focusing on diversifying our employment base. Langley has an exciting tourist, arts, retail and entertainment base, to which we can add a vibrant light industrial zone, and the recruitment of knowledge workers and their families to Langley.

Working together with others in the community, city partnerships will include supporting the port, the school, and park districts, the Whidbey Island Area Fair, Langley Main Street Association, the Langley Chamber of Commerce, the Second Street Market, arts organizations, business owners, churches and faith communities, veterans, and, very importantly, our children.

The City plans to increase the use of technology to better communicate with our constituents and promote our businesses. We can continue to feature the gardens of Langley and the open spaces and public art that add interest to our landscapes. We will improve the maintenance and enhancement of our parks.

In the coming year, we hope to transform Second Street into a multi-use space that will encourage lingering to experience Langley and all of its treasures, gifts and unique people. We plan to paint the library, the chamber of commerce building, improve the Firehouse, and have our city restrooms be clean and safe for everyone’s use when in the city. The city may even be able to fix the steps at Boy and Dog Park to better maintain the waterfront areas, and to continue to support access to the newly expanded Port of South Whidbey marina in Langley.

On the development front, a focus on the scale, scope, character, size, and unique flavor of our city and recruitment of desired businesses into inviting spaces is key. These will be our priorities for the coming year.

Please join us in these efforts. We will succeed in these areas by listening to each other, respecting divergent points of view, and working collaboratively towards mutually agreed-upon goals and objectives with creative and innovative strategies.

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