Most people are at least vaguely familiar with the fable of the ant and the grasshopper. While the grasshopper lived only for the moment and gave little or no thought to the winter ahead, the ant toiled and prepared for its future, so as to ensure survival.
For too long, the City of Moose Jaw has been a grasshopper, reacting to the world around it and heading into an unknown destiny without having formalized its goals, so as to add an element of control.
However, after months of thoughtful consultation, during Monday’s regular council meeting the majority of council approved a City of Moose Jaw strategic plan that acts as a framework for council, administration and the community to direct its sights for the next few years.
Norm Taylor, the professional consultant who helped the city set its strategic plan, said the document approved on Monday enables the municipality to move forward into “an intentional future.”
He noted council very wisely didn’t make its setting the strategic plan merely an internal city hall activity with elected officials and administration, but reached out for opinions from various community stakeholders, thus making the plan a truly “Moose Jaw” one.
The plan includes a vision for the community, seeing Moose Jaw as “a progressive and sustainable ‘city of choice’ building promising futures upon proud traditions.”
With its guiding principles and strategic priorities, the plan will act as a guideline for operations, budgeting and planning within the municipal organization for the next three to five years.
In the fable of the ant and the grasshopper, the latter met its demise due to a lack of planning. Through its effort to move into an intentional future, hopefully Moose Jaw will be the sort of ant that survives and thrives for many winters to come.