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Happening in Missouri City

Posted on: December 29, 2017

2017 Year-In-Review: City Celebrates a Year of Growth & Distinction

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The 52 weeks of 2017 marked as many milestones for the “Show Me City”, spanning a gamut of progress for residents, stakeholders and staff, including the City retaining its AA bond rating, maintaining its public safety status as one of the safest communities in Texas, implementing technology upgrades in all facilities, improving infrastructure citywide, and:

  • Homeowners, business owners, staff and stakeholders weathering Category 4 Hurricane Harvey. The storm’s heavy rains flooded area neighborhoods and streets, while wind and tornados damaged commercial structures on Texas Parkway and hundreds of area homes;
  • The City earning the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) of U.S. and Canada’s Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for the 32nd consecutive year as well as the GFOA’s Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report—Read More;
  • Voters casting ballots in the City’s first November General Election. As part of that electoral process, residents approved the budget cycle being moved from July 1 through June 30 to Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, elected Councilmember Jeffrey Boney to District B and re-elected Mayor Pro Tem Yolanda Ford to District A, Councilmember Anthony Maroulis to District C and Councilmember Floyd Emery to District D;
  • Local, national and international businesses choosing to locate on commercial sites around the City, including a landmark industrial business deal with Best Buy—Read More;
  • The Quail Valley Golf Course and the City Centre hosting more than 136,000 guests. In addition to QVGC hosting a record number of guests, 60,180 rounds were played on the courses, 161 corporate/charity events were held at the facility and 364 non-golf events were hosted;
  • Staff managing the adoption process for the 2017 Comprehensive Plan update;
  • City Council and staff facilitating the openings of:
    • Houston Community College’s Center for Entrepreneurship, Technology and Health on Texas Parkway, bringing an investment of more than $25,000,000 to the Corridor; and
    • FedEx; the local division is expected to create more than 350 new jobs
  • City Council and staff selecting a consultant for an Economic Development Plan to lead planning and engagement efforts in developing a strategy for creating and maintaining a strong, vibrant economy;
  • The City Manager’s Office spearheading a number of employee training programs, including the Customer Service Initiative, and implementing updated City values (Vision, Mission, Credo and Code of Ideals)—Read More; and
  • The City launching a redesign of its main web presence—www.missouricitytx.gov—and the municipality’s first app—MCTX Mobile (available on the App Store and Google Play)

NNO 2017“Transparency and public-private collaborations are paramount to our High Performing Organization, and this year, I continued to set the bar high for my team in conceptualizing and completing projects that are a part of day-to-day operations and those that are unprecedented and will enhance the community,” said City Manager Anthony J. Snipes. “These accomplishments and others were based on business plans developed by each department and would not have been possible without strategic direction from Mayor Allen Owen, Mayor Pro Tem Yolanda Ford (District A) and Councilmembers Jeffrey Boney (District B), Anthony Maroulis (District C), Floyd Emery (District D), Jerry Wyatt (At-Large Position #1) and Chris Preston (At-Large Position #2).”

In addition to the accomplishments outlined above, each calendar year quarter yielded additional results across municipal operations.

Public Input Symposium 2017

In the first quarter period of January through March, the City:

  • Produced a schedule for the Fiscal Year 2018 General Fund Budget;
  • Developed Fiscal Year 2018 Department Business Plans;
  • Celebrated as St. John’s Missionary Baptist Church received a historical marker from the State of Texas. The church, originally formed by freed slaves in 1869, has historically served the community as an African American church and school;
  • Received a competitive $50,000 grant from the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation to replace playground equipment at Quail Valley North Park;
  • Recognized Valerie Tolman as the 2016 Municipal Volunteer of the Year for her contributions to Animal Services;
  • Directed the Houston Area Urban Forestry Tree Planting Competition resulting in 2,078 trees being planted at Buffalo Run Park, Community Park and Oyster Creek Trail. Buffalo Run received the most, with an estimated 2,000 mixed riparian species such as elm, ash, several oaks, baldcypress, mulberry, sycamore, red maple and pecan. Only 160 of the 2,078 trees were purchased through City funds. The remainder were donated by families and private corporations. Also in 2017, 24 trees were planted in the Memorial Tree Program;
  • Hosted the Third Annual Black History Month Celebration of Culture & Music, the relaunch of monthly Family Fun Nights, the second annual Edible Earth Fest, the first annual Public Safety “Break the Chain” Charity Basketball Game and a Public Input Symposium for the website redesign, budget and Comprehensive Plan update;
  • In partnership with the 501c3 Parks Foundation, hosted Super Bowl LI tailgate and watch parties at the City Centre at Quail Valley;
  • Dedicated a namesake street in honor of Constable Ruben Davis;
  • Received a Soft-Stick Equipment Grant by US Lacrosse for Parks & Recreation; and
  • Earned six silver Communicator Awards of Distinction and two silver and 15 bronze Telly Awards for video productions

VWR - Times Square

In the second quarter period of April through June, the City:

  • Ranked No. 71 of the 250 best towns to buy a home in Texas according to LendEDU; the online news agency used licensed data to analyze more than 1,000 Texas towns based on a number of factors deemed important for homebuyers such as income and population projections;
  • Adopted the Fiscal Year 2018 General Fund Budget;
  • Celebrated as City Manager Anthony J. Snipes was sworn in as the National Forum for Black Public Administrators First Vice President at the annual NFBPA Forum;
  • Hosted the First Annual MCTX FEST, an All Employee Breakfast Appreciation & Customer Service Training Event, the annual State of the City, the First Annual Mother’s Day Cake Decorating event as part of the Leadership Luncheon series, a Citywide Job Fair in partnership with companies across the region and a first-ever Youth Town Hall;
  • Joined VWR in Trammell Crow’s Park 8Ninety for the company’s grand opening of its 125,000-square-foot regional distribution center. The business milestone, which included a facility tour and ribbon-cutting ceremony, gained national attention in New York’s Time Square when the opening and a ribbon-cutting photo was featured on a marquee in the thriving marketplace—Read More;
  • Coordinated a groundbreaking ceremony for the Trammel Fresno roadway project and ribbon cuttings for the Hurricane Lane extension and Gregory Boulevard improvements;
  • Launched an “MCTX HPO In Action” Employee Newsletter;
  • Attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the grand opening of District 13 Texas State Sen. Borris L. Miles’ new Fort Bend County District Office on Texas Parkway;
  • Appeared on HGTV’s “Lakefront Bargain Hunt”. Buffalo Run Park and Lakeshore Harbour were featured in a local couple’s search for a Missouri City home;
  • Partnered with Fort Bend County Precinct 2 Commissioner Grady Prestage’s office on a community campaign to solicit public participation in the Missouri City Middle School Gymnasium Renovation Project—Read More; and
  • Earned:
    • An honorable mention award in Municipal Court for the 2017 TMCEC-Municipal Traffic Safety Initiatives Awards;
    • Three awards from the Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers: TAMI for Special Publication, Population Under 85,000 for the MCTX FEST, Mother’s Day Cake Decorating & Community Night Out flyer; Award of Excellence for the Electronic Newsletter, Population Under 100,000 for the City Manager’s Update and Award of Honor for Regular Program, Population under 85,000 for Kids’ Corner; and
    • Awards for marketing and promotion from the Texas Recreation and Parks Society – East Region, and for Advocate of the Year from Texas Recreation and Parks Society – East Region

Mosley Park - Harvey

In the third quarter period of July through September, the City:

  • Continued infrastructure improvements citywide.
    • In the City Hall Complex, work currently under way includes beautification at the entryway to City Hall, exterior painting and lighting upgrades, roof replacement, Community Center improvements and the new Visitors Center. In the future, other place-making features might include a Veterans Memorial, public art, a performance venue and other specialized landmarks;
    • Mobility projects include:
      • Ashmont Drive Reconstruction: This total restoration was identified as a priority in the citywide Pavement Evaluation and will take place between La Quinta and Valley Bend Drives and excludes sidewalks.
      • Adams Street Reconstruction: The reconstruction was identified as a priority in the citywide Pavement Evaluation. The project will focus on restoring approximately 3,400 linear feet of a two-lane facility, new driveway approaches, intersection improvements and the installation of a sidewalk between Texas Parkway and 5th Street.
  • Hosted the First Annual Oktoberfest, the Eighth annual Pre-National Night Out Kick-Off event, the annual Back to School Health Fair with Fort Bend County and AccessHealth and Pickledon, a Wimbledon-inspired Pickleball Tournament;
  • Participated in a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Houston Community College’s new Missouri City Center for Entrepreneurship, Technology & Health, which is adjacent to City Hall;
  • Won first place with the Quail Valley Utility District for producing the best tasting drinking water in the South Central Region of Texas;
  • Welcomed the Texas Leaguer Brewing Company, Best Buy, Rexel Electric Supply and LT Foods Americas, a global producer, procurer, distributor and marketer of authentic Basmati Rice to the City;

During this same timeframe, Hurricane Harvey made landfall on Friday, Aug. 25. Harvey started off as a tropical depression and gradually churned into a Category 4storm. As the winds and heavy rain intensified, the City’s Emergency Operation Center was activated to assure a timely, efficient response from first responders and front-line staff. 

“For seven days, team members from all departments worked tirelessly to rescue residents and pets trapped in flooded areas, to notify homeowners of evacuation orders, to monitor road closures, to watch rising waterway levels and inspect levee and drainage systems, to distribute news alerts and advisories, to coordinate media reports, to establish shelters and staging spaces, to receive donations, to partner with volunteers and to assure the safety and well-being of one another,” City Manager Snipes said. “Our public safety crews rescued more than 1,300 residents from City limits and the ETJ areas where we provide service. In addition, staff coordinated with area partners to share important relief information and help impacted residents get back on their feet.”

City facilities were also a resource during the disaster. For instance, the City Centre at Quail Valley housed more than 69 State Troopers for six nights and six National Guard Members for two nights. All utilized the event rooms and hallways for sleeping areas and were fed breakfast and dinner during shift changes at 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Many of the officers and guardsmen also used resources at the Recreation & Tennis Center during their local stay. 

Snipes also applauded the City’s “commercial partners for their generosity during Harvey. We were fortunate to have Niagara Cares, the philanthropic division of Niagara Bottling, LLC pledge $1 million to local relief efforts and other companies have provided assistance as well.” 

The City is currently in the recovery phase with residents, businesses and stakeholders working together to assure all areas are fully restored.

Kim Waters at CNO 2017

In the fourth and final quarter period of October through December, the City:

  • Hosted the 34th Annual National Night Out, the Second Annual Community Night Out utilizing the City’s new mobile stage, the Third Annual Shrimp Boil Tennis Tournament, Tricks and Treats in the Park, the Ninth Annual Operation Thanksgiving: Stuff the Squad Car and Fire Truck, the annual Snowfest Festival, a fair housing forum with regional partners and the First Annual Leadership NOW Symposium in partnership with the National Forum for Black Public Administrators, the Texas City Management Association, Texas Southern University, Hampton Inn & Suites, the City of Sugar Land, the University of Houston—Master of Public Administration, and the Marriott Sugar Land Town Square. The event was also sponsored by a number of corporate partners;
  • Continued the Glenn Lakes Bridge Reconstruction over Oyster Creek. The Bridge, which has been in service since the 1970s, has shown an increasing exposure of piles due to erosion, and replacement will help maintain safe access to residents. This reconstruction was identified as a priority in the citywide Pavement Evaluation;
  • Recognized Municipal Court for four awards their team members won at the Texas Court Clerks Association annual banquet;
  • Earned Re-Recognized Accreditation Status for the Police Department. The recognition is managed by Texas Police Chiefs Association auditors. The Law Enforcement Recognition Program is a voluntary process in which police agencies in Texas prove their compliance with 164 Texas Law Enforcement Best Practices. These practices were developed by Texas Law Enforcement professionals to assist agencies in the efficient and effective delivery of service, the reduction of risk and the protection of individual’s rights;
  • Saluted retiring District B Councilmember Don Smith for his more than 13 years of service to the City. Mr. Smith is also the Founder and Chairman of the Missouri City Juneteenth Celebration Foundation, which marked its 15th anniversary this year;
  • Updated technology in the Communications Center at Public Safety Headquarters to improve functionality;
  • Launched a revitalized City website. The overhaul of the main online presence, www.missouricitytx.gov, was a collaboration of residents, City Council, stakeholders, employees from all departments, the University of Houston Master of Public Administration program, who polled local businesses for the initiative, Creative Consumer Research, a market research firm that conducted an independent internal/external project survey and public input symposium, and CivicPlus, a nationally renowned company that provides integrated technology platforms and solutions for local, state and federal government agencies;
  • Made www.SafeHome.org’s 2017 list of the Safest Cities in the U.S. and ranked No. 13 in Texas. SafeHome, which conducts reviews of home security systems, completed their ranking by looking at the FBI’s latest report of how many and what types of crimes occurred in each city over a single year; the city’s crime trends are also considered; the number of law enforcement officers compared to the population; and demographic metrics that are correlated to crime;
  • Shared news of the 501c3 Missouri City Parks Foundation moving forward with its first strategic priority, the future Veterans Memorial slated for construction in the City Hall Complex. “We are thankful that the Parks Foundation saw fit to allow the Veterans Memorial to be the signature and kickoff project for our City Hall place-making initiative. Efforts are under way now to engage private citizens, foundations and corporate partners to help us achieve our $1.5 million dollar goal,” Snipes said. “The venture will be done in two phases and each will have a project cost of $750,000. Our goal is to complete fundraising by June, 2018.”—Read More; and
  • Photographed the City Hall Complex as a real-life winter wonderland, when snow fell in the early morning hours of Dec. 8—See Photos

As part of the City’s commitment to citizen education and engagement, when staff received a high-volume of inquiries on a topic during 2017, team members compiled and distributed comprehensive frequently asked questions to provide residents with in-depth details on issues of interest. Topics included Animal Services, the 2017 Charter Election, the official City logo, area addresses and geographical limits and the extraterritorial jurisdiction.

“We’re closing out another banner year with these achievements and so many more. It’s in great part because of our talented team of employees and partnerships with our citizens,” City Manager Snipes said. “And, we will continue to build on our reputation as a safe, scenic city that is ranked one of America’s BEST places to live, work and play.”

In 2018, City officials and staff will maintain the focus on economic development initiatives, technology upgrades, the budget, improvement and expansion of infrastructure, management of the first-class amenities, community outreach and citizen collaborations.

“The Show Me City is positioned to shine bright for decades to come,” Snipes said, “and we’re excited about what our future holds.”

For updates, please watch the City website: www.missouricitytx.gov, like us on Facebook—fb/MissouriCityTX, follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat—@MissouriCityTX, and watch Missouri City Television (Ch. 16 on Comcast and Ch. 99 on AT&T U-verse).

Snow Day 2017


 

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