2020 STRATEGIC REPORT
THE TOWN WITH A LAKE ATTITUDE
TABLE OF CONTENTS
THE TOWN OF LITTLE ELM HAS A LONG AND RICH HISTORY THAT STRETCHES BACK OVER 175 YEARS.
From a small settlement chartered as part of the Peters Colony to the bustling town we see today, Little Elm has changed in size, appearance, and population. Surrounded by the beautiful waters of Lake Lewisville, Little Elm is a town that transcends time. Chartered in 1841 and settled in 1844, the Town of Little Elm grew from a few hundred people in 1966 to more than 45,000 people in just 30 years, making it one of the fastest-growing cities in Texas.
The Town's population continues to grow, as thousands of people choose to make Little Elm their home, year after year. 50,000
171,73 151,83 135,44 005,64 720,05
THE MISSION OF THE TOWN OF LITTLE ELM IS TO BUILD ON OUR UNIQUE LAKE OPPORTUNITIES AND SMALL-TOWN CHARM, ENCOURAGE DIVERSE HOUSING OPTIONS AND BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES, AND PROVIDE AN UNMATCHED QUALITY OF LIFE. THE VISION OF THE TOWN OF LITTLE ELM IS A DISTINCT AND DESIRABLE LAKESIDE DESTINATION FOR ALL PEOPLE TO LIVE AND PLAY WHILE ENJOYING A SAFE, VIBRANT, AND WELCOMING COMMUNITY.
CORE VALUES INTEGRITY We are honest, loyal, trustworthy, transparent, fair and open minded, and have a culture of accountability. We keep our word and admit our mistakes. We stand up for what is right even in the face of a challenge, and do what is right, even if no one notices.
EFFICIENCY We recognize that we are entrusted with resources ultimately owned by the community, and as stewards of those, are committed to use the minimum resources required to realize the maximum result. We will find the shortest path on a route or in a process, and operate without waste, with proper use of taxpayer dollars, and without compromising quality.
INNOVATION We have a willingness to grow, to explore new ideas, and to challenge the status quo. We are open to change though we do not seek change unnecessarily. We allow the freedom to try new things and recognize that through creativity and reasonable risk, we will build a stronger, healthier Town together. We are an organization dedicated to learning and continuous improvement.
CUSTOMER SERVICE We are respectful, positive, attentive, approachable, responsive, and empathetic. We focus on being able to assist internal and external customers, not simply accommodate them. Whether the answer involves going the extra mile or sometimes even delivering bad news, we are courteous, patient, humble, and professional.
A LETTER FROM MAYOR DAVID HILLOCK
As Mayor of Little Elm, I have had the honor of leading the Council and our community through some of the Town's busiest years of strategic development. Along with the doubling of our population, these years have brought us a wide range of community-defining projects like the expanded Swim Beach, Pavilion, and other improvements in Little Elm Park, Central Park in the Union Park neighborhood, the complete re-design and construction of Beard Park, and the expansion of the Town's Recreation Center. We also saw a massive expansion and improvements of the Town's trail system and, of course, The Cove at The Lakefrontâ„˘, opening in early 2021 and soon, the beginning of construction in Cottonwood Park and an additional park along Main Street under the old "Tin Man" water tower in The Lakefrontâ„˘ District. We have expanded our Fire Department's reach with a new facility on Navo Road, and plans are in place for our fourth and final station on Oak Grove Parkway. Our Police Department has all it needs to ensure our community ranks among the safest in the nation. Our Public Works team has everything it needs to maintain the infrastructure that keeps everything safely moving in the right direction. To sum it up, Little Elm has come a long way since your Town Council began developing its first Strategic Plan in 2012. In those days, we were just beginning the process of defining the Town we would someday become. But, today, as we look at the achievements attained over the last eight years, it is easy to see that adopting a plan that guided us over the years was critical to our Town's success and long-term financial stability. Little Elm's Strategic Plan incorporates all aspects of our community's development and daily operations. In the following pages, you will have an opportunity to review the progress made toward our goals and track the course of Little Elm's development since we began the process in 2012. In the coming months, our residents will have an opportunity to select new leadership and my time as Mayor will come to an end. Even as my tenure comes to a close, I am so proud of the firm footing we've put into place. I have great confidence that even with change, this Strategic Plan will continue to guide our community well into the future and that our residents will continue to accept nothing less than awesome.
Mayor, Town of Little Elm
NICK MUSTEEN DISTRICT 5
MICHAEL MCCLELLAN DISTRICT 6
GOAL 1: PROVIDE A SAFE AND WELCOMING ENVIRONMENT FOR LITTLE ELM RESIDENTS AND VISITORS Established a new police substation in Frisco West to better serve stakeholders in the northern part of the community. Completed the construction of French Settlement Road located near the Jerry Walker Middle School. Completed the installation of the signal light at Dickson Lane located near the Jerry Walker Middle School. Began reconstruction of Button Street to install new curbs, sidewalks, and new roadway. Coordinated with the State and County for the reconstruction of FM 720. Signed an interlocal agreement with the City of Denton for dispatch/communication services for Town of Little Elm Public Safety Departments. Placed a new 100' Aerial Tower Quint into service. The Fire Department maintained an average response time of 5 minutes and 11 seconds within Town limits. An average of 5.17 firefighters responded to each incident. Fire loss was estimated at $546,800, with total property value saved estimated at $1,438,040. Relocated McCord Park Outdoor Warning Siren to provide better coverage within the community. The Police Department 13,382 traffic contacts.
CONDUCTED 725 RENTAL HOME SAFETY INSPECTIONS ANSWERED 44,385 POLICE CALLS FOR SERVICE RESPONDED TO 4,344 FIRE INCIDENTS NEW RESIDENTIAL INSPECTIONS TOTALED 14,302, UP 4.3 PERCENT FROM 2019 ACHIEVED A 96 PERCENT VOLUNTARY COMPLIANCE RATE IN 6,877 COMMUNITY INTEGRITY VIOLATION CASES
Recovered $160,582 in stolen property. Began the process of reviewing and updating traffic impact and access management and drainage ordinances. Completed the replacement of Fire Station 1 apparatus floor. Completed parking lot expansion at Town Hall. Completed renovation of the Recreation Center and the Public Safety Building. Developed and implemented a Rental Home Safety Inspection Checklist to provide a consistent and thorough inspection designed to catch common building and property maintenance violations, along with life-safety hazards for new rental home tenants. Provided education and an informational packet for every new tenant during the safety inspection process, including information on the ten most-common code violations, trash and bulk pick-up regulations, and Town calendars.
POUNDS OF PRESCRIPTION DRUGS COLLECTED
PERCENT OF CRIMINAL CASES CLEARED
PERCENT MORE RESIDENTIAL CERTIFICATES OF OCCUPANCY OVER 2019
GOAL 2: ENSURE STRONG RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE COMMUNITY AND REGION
Initiated a new reporting tool known as a Popular Annual Financial Report (PAFR) to highlight the Town's financial condition from the year-end audit. Transitioned the paper permit process to a completely virtual process. Established a Virtual Inspection Program. Created virtual Development Review Committee meetings. Little Elm Chamber came under the management of the Little Elm Economic Development Corporation. The EDC worked with Retractable Technologies, Inc. to secure a $1.4 million grant to expand the facility, which will allow for job growth, increased sales tax, and bolster the local economy. Conducted a Virtual Annual Fire Safety Program and Fire Department Open House. Held Annual Santa Around Town Program. Added the National Institute for Standards and Technology Standard Test Methods for Aerial Systems to our UAS program. Participated with mutual aid drone support for missing person searches across the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Hosted Coffee with Cops. Actively participated in the Make380 Safe program. Participated in monthly meetings with HOAs and community partners. Expanded School Resource Officer program by adding a supervisor to Denton ISD schools and a Community Officer to Frisco ISD. Attended Monthly Safety meetings with Little Elm ISD and assisted in the development of a tabletop exercise for the Walker Middle School Emergency Management Plan.
THE EDC MAILED OUT 31,000 $25 VOUCHERS TO RESIDENTS OF LITTLE ELM AND NEIGHBORING COMMUNITIES TO REDEEM AT LOCAL RESTAURANTS BETWEEN MARCHDECEMBER 2020.
The LEPD was re-recognized by the Texas Police Chiefs Best Practice Program. The LEFD provided mutual aid to Corinth, Oak Point, Savannah, North East, and Frisco. Negotiated developer's agreements for key developments within the Town. Partnered with area HOAs to build new screening walls through the Community Integrity Grant Program. Negotiated and executed developer's agreements with the Home Improvement Program. Created The Lakefront™ Residential Overlay District guidelines. GIS maintained successful relationships with the Denton County 911, Denton County Appraisal District, NCTCOG, and the City of Denton. This coordination is necessary for emergency management functions and ensuring the safety of our residents. Worked with our regional and local partners to promote area events and initiatives and push out information from regional partners and jurisdictions. Assisted U.S. Census Bureau and NCTCOG with updating census blocks for the 2020 Census based on our building permits. Communicated to stakeholders through The Mainsail, the Recreation Newsletter, and the monthly NewsBreak video. Increased social media audience across all platforms. Continued to promote the Town of Little Elm Brand by ensuring brand/logo usage meets standards of our Branding & Style Guide. Promoted The Lakefront™ District whenever possible through targeted marketing, events, social media campaigns, and partnerships. Expanded marketing of the Town of Little Elm events and programs through greater social media use, print marketing, and the continuation of the Dallas Morning News insert for the sixth year.
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT PERSONNEL SERVED IN BOTH THE HB 2340 STUDY GROUP FOR UNMANNED AIRCRAFT RESPONDING TO AND RECOVERING FROM DISASTERS AND THE NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS COUNCIL OF GOVERNMENTS EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS UAS TEAMS.
HOSTED 5TH ANNUAL CITIZENS GOVERNMENT ACADEMY— VIRTUALLY. THE PROGRAM NOW HAS 88 GRADUATES.
GOAL 3: MAXIMIZE COMMUNITY RECREATION AND LEISURE ACTIVITIES • The Cove at The Lakefront™ is currently under construction with a projected opening in early 2021. • Secured an entertainment venue for The Lakefront™ with construction to begin July 2020-ongoing with completion in 2022. • Secured a brand name hotel for The Lakefront™ expected to be completed in 2022. • Developed Incident Action Plans for multiple Town events. • Submitted a grant application and started the design for Cottonwood Park Phase 1. • Completed the Wood Family Dog Park and McCord Park playground. • Ran a PSA hydration campaign in May, encouraging safe hydration in the hotter summer months. • Provided a virtual trivia campaign throughout quarantine to encourage some fun competition amongst trivia lovers. • Created five major online recreation and health programs during COVID for the community and Town employees. • Conducted the Mayor's Fitness Challenge virtually. Adult Athletics: - Expansion of the Cornhole League to offer 2v2 leagues on two different nights. - Hosted our first virtual 5K and had over 200 participants. - Hosted the first-ever season of eSports leagues. - Moved all registrations to the Teamsideline website and began taking registrations online in November of 2019. - Had more than 130 field reservations for the 2020 fiscal year and collected more than $6500 in reservation fees.
903 PARTICIPANTS FROM 106 TEAMS IN ADULT ATHLETIC LEAGUES
• Rec Programming: - Began Skyhawks sports programs with over 120 participants throughout 2020. - Kidz Love Soccer had 40 participants before the COVID-19 shutdown. - 3-D Dance hosted their spring session virtually and began a virtual dance party program. - Twist3d Cuisine hosted virtual cooking demos during shutdown and created over 2500 views combined during all classes. - Created a Stay-at-Home Activity Booklet for the Recreation Center. - Red Tiger Karate had more than 40 participants. • Youth Sports: - LEAYSA finished their 2019 fall seasons with over 1500 participants. - LEAYSA had around 1000 participants for their fall 2020 seasons. - Switched all LEAYSA scheduling for fields over to the updated Teamsideline website.
CREATED FIVE MAJOR RECREATION AND WELLNESS PROGRAMS FOR STAFF AND STAKEHOLDERS.
GOAL 4: MAINTAIN OPERATIONAL INTEGRITY AND VIABILITY
Implementation of project management software called Monday to increase efficiency in the Development Services Department. Implemented online applications for commercial projects. Finance complied a Town's Comprehensive Financial Management Policy (CFMP) to ensure that the Town is financially able to meet its immediate and long-term service objectives and outlines policies to serve as guidelines for financial planning and internal financial management of the Town. Contracted with Enterprise in 2020 to assist with the replacement of "white fleet" and overall fleet management.
Confirmed AA bond rating from Standard and Poor's (S&P) and improved the management section due to multi-year planning, CIP planning list, and developing a Comprehensive Financial Management Policy. Received the Annual Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award from the National Procurement Institute for the sixth year. Implemented Virtual Court services. Finance obtained an Investment Award from the Government Treasurer's Organization. Community Integrity was nationally recognized by the American Association of Code Enforcement. Developed a paperless payroll system for the Fire Department. Constructed a training field for the Fire Department and Police Department. Replaced the floor in the Apparatus Bay in Fire Station 1.
RECOUPED $14,560 IN FAILED RECREATION CENTER MEMBERSHIP PAYMENTS. THE TOWN OF LITTLE ELM WAS AWARDED THE CERTIFICATE OF ACHIEVEMENT FOR EXCELLENCE IN FINANCIAL REPORTING FROM THE GOVERNMENT FINANCE OFFICERS ASSOCIATION FOR THE TENTH CONSECUTIVE YEAR.
GOAL 5: PROMOTE AND EXPAND LITTLE ELM'S IDENTITY Created a new Town-wide wayfinding signage program. Conducted a design charrette process in The Lakefront™ for the entertainment venue, hotel, and retail areas. Incorporated developer's agreements with all zoning requests. Continued to advance projects in The Lakefront™ to make the area distinct from other parts of the Town, including completion of the district-wide lighting project, purchasing new banners, and the installation of "Instagrammable spaces". Added social media channels for the Parks & Recreation Department, The Cove at The Lakefront™, and took over management of the Little Elm Animal Services Facebook page.
PARTNERED WITH THE THREE HIGH SCHOOLS THAT SERVE LITTLE ELM RESIDENTS TO CREATE ARTWORK TO WRAP ON UTILITY BOXES IN THE LAKEFRONT™.
GOAL 6: ENSURE EXCELLENCE IN PUBLIC SERVICES WHILE KEEPING UP WITH THE GROWTH OF THE COMMUNITY Implemented a new learning management system module, LocalGovU, to offer our team members virtual training options. Completed the Wastewater Treatment Plant inspection. Continued design of the TxDOT-funded Green Ribbon Landscaping Project. GIS department created additional transparency through key data sets for the functionality of all departments to assist our residents. Created a temporary COVID-19 web dashboard to keep our residents informed until Denton County could go live with their dashboard. Collaborating with third-party GIS services to increase GIS functionality and efficiency and bring innovative products for community engagement. GIS added a new search tool to a web-mapping application to assist Community Waste Disposal, Utility Billing, and Public Works staff. The tool increased efficiency by allowing these entities to search for existing, new, or under construction addresses not found in other applications. Recreated Town of Little Elm Employee Wellness Handbook. Moved Wellness Seminars online. Completed a five-year water and wastewater rate study to ensure rates are competitive while maintaining the Town's infrastructure, growth demands, and best practice level of reserves.
HOSTED BI-ANNUAL CLEAN & GREEN EVENTS AND RECYCLED 35 TONS OF HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE, E-WASTE, AND DOCUMENTS.
COMPLETED 1.5M IN STREET MAINTENANCE PROJECTS AS PART OF THE ANNUAL STREET MAINTENANCE PROGRAM. MANAGED AND HAULED OVER 1800 TONS OF REFUSE FROM THE TOWN'S COURTESY DROP SITE.
Renewed solid waste contract with CWD and locked in residential and multi-family trash service rates for CWD services. Implemented interactive payment channel for utility billing customers to pay by phone. Began process to update the Town's five-year Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. Began process to renew the Town's five-year Wastewater Treatment Permit with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. Maintained Public Works Accreditation with the American Public Works Association. Hosted bi-annual Clean & Green Events and recycled 35 tons of household hazardous waste, e-waste, and documents. Treated 956.968 million gallons of wastewater. Purchased 1,509,605,000 gallons of water. Sold 1,260,058,600 gallons of water.
LITTLE ELM ANIMAL SERVICES: RAN 5138 CALLS ADOPTED OUT 201 PETS REUNITED 177 PETS WITH THEIR OWNERS