Information is the top priority for POWC.
When people have good information, they can make good decisions. It must be unbiased and factual.
POWC also supports a shared vocabulary for use on the Island. Terms like quality of life, quality tourism, economic development, and transparency in government often are not clear as to their meaning because different people can interpret those phrases in different ways.
When POWC uses these phrases, they mean:
Quality of Life-
A family-friendly, economically-sound community environment that is vibrant throughout the year.
Multiple-night or extended visits to the Island by non-residents from throughout the world.
SIGINIFICANT improvements to the Island's current hospitality offerings, growth of the Island's existing businesses, and the attraction of new industries and professions to the Island are not currerntly present at an appropriate level.
Transparency in Government-
Much like a window, transparency exists only if it exists 100%.
POWC will continue to support elected, appoointed, and employed public sector officials being available for dialogue with media, citizens, civic groups, and constituents.
POWC opposes elected, appointed, or employed public-sector officials or groups inappropriately concealing information from the public by utilizing legal loopholes relating to attorney-cloient privilege or claimed exceptions to the Freedom of Information Act.
South Padre Island is a small island with a small population. Secrets morph quicly into rumors, while transparency enables truth.
7 Priorities for Island Development
These priorities were submitted, discussed, then voted on by the readers of Island Matters. The 7 projects listed below were selected from over 40 projects that were presented, then statisticaly ranked in orders of magnitude:
1. Complete phase two of the drainage study
This wasn't even close! It was 5X as important as second place.
2. Develop one or more "City Centers"
The vision is pedestrian-oriented shopping, art, music, and restaurant area(s). The suggested locations were Padre Blvd. access road from the 700 block to the 400 block and the Entertainment District. The idea is to eliminate north-south traffic in these zones and only allow cross traffic for hotel/residence entry and parking.
3. Develop an SPI App
Our members want to kow what is going on around the Island every day! This may be a CVB project, a public-private partnership, or something that could be developed by the private sector. Points of interest are live music, restaurant specials, events, promotions, daily information, and deals.
4. Incentivize our tropical look
This item was about planting. Our membes want to incentivize more palm trees and flowering plants in both public and publicly-seen private spaces. You pointed out that many of the palm trees on the Island are killed or damaged by trimming practices that violate the standards promoted by teh Texas A&M Extension Service.
A simple one-hour certification course teaching proper trimming methods and equipment shouild be required to protect our investments in these palms.
5. Preserve and strengthen our dunes
Invite the GLO to do an inspection and audit of our dune system. Are our local policies in line with the best practices worldwide?
6. Bury our distribution lines
There was an acknowledgment that this is a generational project. It is too big for our small tax base to do all at once, but we could do one street per year. The best way to beautify our Island is to remove ugliness and it would give us much better storm resilience.
7. Develop an "Internet Team"
Whose job it is to develop a plan to improve our internet and cell services dramatically. One key point was that it didn't have to be council members and/or staff. There is plenty of talent on the Island (full and part-time) with expertise in these areas. The end goal is world-class wi-fi- and 5G.