Good Morning Lakeland Residents!
With forecasted temperatures in the mid-60’s for the high, it is thankfully shaping up to be a much milder week than last week! Along those lines, our contracted trash collection service is running behind due to the ice from last week but are running additional crews to collect it all as soon as possible. We ask for your patience.
I would also remind everyone that the after-hours emergency phone numbers posted on our website are just that – for emergencies. Missed trash collections are not an emergency. Downed trees, power lines, flooded roads, debri in the roads, and sewer issues would be emergencies, and the intention of the after-hours phone line.
A Look Back to Last Week
Both of the City’s evening meetings last week were cancelled due to weather, road, and parking lot conditions, for the safety and wellbeing of staff, volunteers, and residents.
Lakeland P.U.L.S.E. Comprehensive Plan Public Engagement Session
The Lakeland P.U.L.S.E. Comprehensive Plan public meeting scheduled for last Tuesday evening is now rescheduled to Tuesday February 28th at 6pm.
Board of Commissioners Work Session
The BOC’s work session scheduled for last week was cancelled. Work sessions are public meetings where business items are presented to or by the collective Board of Commissioners, enabling BOC members and the public to have adequate opportunity to review proposed ordinances or resolutions prior to the BOC voting on them the following week. The meeting materials and proposed items are published still on lakelandtn.gov/agendas, and will be presented, discussed, and voted upon this week.
Although we experienced closures, late openings, cancelled meetings, and safety concerns with icy road conditions last week, the work of the City of Lakeland continued. Here are just a couple of other things that happened last week that may be of interest:
- On Thursday afternoon, our internal City Staff team reviewed responses to a Request for Qualifications from vendors bidding on the project of updating our City land development regulations. This is much-needed work that goes hand-in-hand with the update of our comprehensive plan process, and we are working with the selected vendor to get a full proposal to present to the BOC for approval.
- On Friday, Al Bright, attorney for the Industrial Development Board of the City of Lakeland (the Lakeland IDB), Dexter Muller, consultant, and I (as President of the IDB) met with the Economic Development subcommittee of the Shelby County Board of Commissioners to present a concept Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District for the northern portion of the I-40 and Canada Road interchange. Ultimately, the TIF District, championed by Mayor Roman and initially dubbed the Lakeland Gateway TIF, would be approved by the Lakeland IDB, the Lakeland Board of Commissioners, and the Shelby County Board of Commissioners prior to being in effect. Look for special called meetings later this month for the Lakeland IDB and BOC to consider this plan for approval. I encourage anyone with questions about TIF Districts, how they work, or why they are good for the City, to please email me any time at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Look Ahead
There are several opportunities for you to be engaged in City governance this week, and to make your voice heard! All meetings posted on lakelandtn.gov/agendas are open public meetings, and we would love to see you there!
Lakeland Board of Education Meeting
The Lakeland Board of Education meets in public session as well, typically at City Hall, and their schedule and agendas are posted at here - including for Monday night’s meeting at 5:45pm!
Board of Commissioners Special Meeting – Strategic Planning Session
In 2021, the BOC met to establish a set of five (5) key strategic goals for the City of Lakeland. Each year since then, the BOC has met to discuss, modify, or reaffirm those goals. This strategic planning session this year is of great importance, as it is the first opportunity for our new Mayor Josh Roman and Commissioner Connie McCarter to be a part of this process. The meeting will be live-streamed, and is Tuesday night at 6:30pm at City Hall.
Board of Commissioners Regular Meeting
Thursday night at 5:30pm is the regular meeting of the BOC. The meeting is expected to largely mirror the published agenda from last week’s work session, with the addition of -
- A discussion item about what would be involved with adding a building inspection department as a City function, in follow up to a BOC resolution passed last year seeking such input
- A discussion of potential changes to meeting times for the BOC and the Municipal Planning and Design Review Commission
Look for the official agenda, supporting materials, and staff reports to be published at lakelandtn.gov/agendas tomorrow afternoon.
To Be Continued…
As I have said several times and firmly believe, our work for the City of Lakeland is never completed but always to be continued. Our entire Board of Commissioners, volunteer members of our boards and commissions, and all of City Staff work together to make Lakeland the best place to live or visit in the area. After a weather event such as last week, the challenge to continue our work is even greater, as our Public Works crews work tirelessly to restore order to our community, whether by treating roadways for ice, clearing downed trees and limbs, or patching potholes. This is work that continued last week, during the early and late hours, and I cannot thank our Public Works crew enough for their tireless efforts! To aid us in this work, please continue to report any issues you see on the Lakeland Connect app, available in your smart phone’s app store. As this work continues I remain…
In Your Service,
Michael Walker, City Manager