Monday the Virginia Beach City Council held it's one day Spring Strategic Planning Meeting, which lasted about 6 1/2 hours.
The most time was spent on fiscal policy: this year's Budget process was reviewed, Council discussed City employee compensation, and health care costs.
Jim Spore uttered what would be heresy to fiscal conservatives: "You can spend too much time on the Budget", the City Manager said, "The Budget isn't the most important thing you do." Spore claimed the Comprehensive Plan was most important.
Speaking of the Comprehensive Plan, the first draft of the new plan is scheduled for March, 2009, with Council getting the final Plan in July, 2009.
Transportation was a big topic, as it has been in recent years. Local roads were talked about, and documents on the Transportation Plan released by Governor Kaine distributed. Mass transit was also covered, with Jim Wood declaring the Norfolk Southern Right-of-Way "the absolute highest priority" for Virginia Beach transit.
Ron Villanueva pushed two initiatives. One, he fought for bus shelters again. Two, he wants the bike path paralleling the Boardwalk widened eastward to the Boardwalk, wiping out the grass median in between.
Finally, Bob Dyer stated that implementing the Budget's Blue Ribbon Task Force recommendations would be a two year process. He wanted to draft the proposed Strategic Plan for Virginia Beach with "significant community involvement."