Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Year’s Resolutions for Cooper City

New Year’s Resolutions for Cooper City
By John Sims, Cooper City Commissioner

This upcoming year will be about positive change on your behalf. It’s time to take positive action for the well being of our residents and business owners, which means reducing ‘feel good’ spending, eliminating unnecessary assessments and lowering taxes.

I can say for certain that I will continue to work very hard to serve the public and do my very best to be the leader that our residents and business owners rightfully expect. I can also assure you that the commission will work to address the major issues in our city such as retirement, water and sewer issues, ordinances that should not be on the books, etc. There have been many problems over the past that seemingly have not been addressed effectively, timely or appropriately.

Now that we have an ethics ordinance, things will indeed necessitate change. As I see it, there are two steps that need to be taken. First, the commission along with all employees must, more than anyone else, play by the same rules at all times. It is imperative that public officials be independent, impartial and that public office not be used for personal or political gain. If we can’t trust our elected officials, who can we trust? Again, true leadership and trust in government demands integrity, honesty and humility.

We, as a commission, still have major issues to resolve such as the police and fire personnel issues necessary to protect our residents and new developments, water and sewer infrastructure issues, school bussing, Monterra, commission communications and leadership issues along with many others such as resident participation, which is at an all time low.

As a commission, we must implement Management by Objective, improve and maintain the city’s common areas, address unfunded mandates and liabilities, address ten year budget projections, reduce our current spending spree, implement more diverse programs, increase employee morale, improve efficiency and customer service, return our city to the residents and most importantly, restore fiscal responsibility and accountability to public office.

How can we make this happen? We must review every detail of how we do business as a city, and how we lead as elected officials. Emphasis on Open Government must rule. The value we're trying to protect here is public integrity, responsibility and accountability. The idea that we give public service not for the benefit of ourselves, but for the benefit of the public for whom we give service must prevail. I am of firm belief that leadership by example will instill teamwork and respect. Additionally, it will motivate subordinates and those on the Commission to work with enhanced vigilance and commitment toward a common goal.

My main point is this...our city’s leadership team must do the right thing based upon the will of the people even though they individually may have a vested interest in their agenda. We should diligently serve as elected public officials and do exactly that until the last second of our current term in office. The commission needs to make our municipal government more like a business; a problem solver, not a problem creator. Our focus should be combating runaway taxes, skyrocketing and uncontrolled spending along with inefficient, excessive regulation.

Working together with the residents and business owners of Cooper City, the new commission must pledge to bring back integrity, trust, responsibility, communication, commitment and accountability to all areas.

Together, we will all help and continue to make Cooper City truly “Someplace Special.” Along with that New Year’s wish, I wish you all Happy New Year. Be safe…

Visit my website www.keepsims.com or e-mail me for any city concerns at Commissioner_Sims@CooperCityFL.org