Westminster city council adopted the 2022 strategic plan on a 7-0 vote on April 25 during a council meeting.
But even though the vote was unanimous, city councilors Sarah Nurmela and Obi Ezeadi noted the plan did not include important items they wanted.
“While the majority of council is moving forward with the majority of things brought up, I do want to note I feel like this strategic plan is not addressing affordable housing, conservation efforts we should be doing for water and other resources,” Nurmela said.
When the council formulated the plan, support for local businesses, preparing for future fires, more festivals and local events and hiring more police officials came out high while climate action, promoting affordable housing, diversity training for police and advocating for better transportation options dropped off of the list.
Ezeadi agreed with Nurmela.
“It is missing critical items like climate action and housing,” Ezeadi said.
At Westminster’s inaugural Town Hall on March 31, Westminster resident Christopher Stimpson said nixing climate action from the plan was a mistake.
Ezeadi emphasized that discourse during discussions like these are fruitful and needed for a democracy.
“It’s okay to be an opposing voice,” Ezeadi said.
“The accessibility for discourse, that is really important here and is going to be a theme throughout this council,” he said.
Mayor Pro Tem DeMott agreed and noted disagreement is the bedrock of society. He said that even though certain items aren’t included in the strategic plan, they are on the city staff’s tasks.
“You can’t have every single thing be a strategic priority,” he said.
During the April 18 Westminster study session when the council solidified the strategic priorities and added performance measures, Nurmela and Ezeadi brought up concerns that housing and climate action were not included.
“Do you think that every single thing the city does needs to be in the current objectives?” DeMott asked, and pointed to the city’s sustainability department and environmental advisory board.
“We have dog licensing in here,” Ezeadi responded. “We are going down to the level of dog licenses so I think we can have climate action.”
City Councilor Rich Seymour said majority rules.
“We as a body decided not to,” he said.