Rick Van Beveren
City Council works for Hillsboro residents.
Their mission in this work is to provide visionary leadership that delivers responsive municipal services and fosters collaborative partnerships that enhance Hillsboro’s hometown livability.
City Council provides community leadership, create policies to guide the City in delivering services and achieving community goals, and encourage citizen awareness and involvement through committees and boards, the Youth Advisory Council and more. The City Council also serves as the Hillsboro Economic Development Council (HEDC), the City's urban renewal agency under Oregon Revised Statue 457. The Council convenes as the HEDC at least once per year.
Community members, the City Council and hundreds of City employees contributed to developing the following statements that will help guide City of Hillsboro operations and service delivery in years to come.
The City of Hillsboro is dedicated to providing visionary leadership, delivering responsive municipal services and fostering collaborative partnerships that enhance Hillsboro's hometown livability.
Excellence in Public Service
Striving for excellence in public service is the objective for all of our work.
Respect for Diverse Voices and Ideas
Incorporating the voices, ideas and cultures that reflect Hillsboro's rich personality.
Responsiveness in Customer Service
Offering fast, friendly, flexible and fair service.
Tradition of Reliability
Valuing the stability and successes of our history.
Stewardship of the Public Trust
Sound, reasonable, honest and transparent resource management.
Leadership with Ethics and Integrity
Ethical conduct and integrity as fundamentals of strong leadership.
Culture of Teamwork and Communication
Valuing our colleagues and working in collaboration.
Emphasis on Innovation
Creative and practical solutions.
The City's strategic plan was adopted by the City Council in January 2010.
- Support diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in City policy-making and in the delivery of services by adopting an equity statement, continuing DEI training, and utilizing an equity lens.
- Support this year’s Hillsboro 2035 Community Plan five-year update and continue to position the City 50 years out for future success.
- Encourage and support innovative long-term housing solutions, such as land banking, to promote the development of market-rate and regulated affordable housing, affordable homeownership opportunities for Hillsboro residents, and regional partnerships to address homelessness.
- Explore the creation of a centralized and simplified low-income utility rate program to improve our ability to provide assistance to low-income residents.
- Continue to develop Hillsboro’s municipal broadband utility to deliver reliable and affordable high-speed internet connections to Hillsboro residents, businesses, and schools.
- Support efforts to advance and improve safety for all modes of transportation, including for pedestrians and bicyclists, public transit access and service options, freight mobility, and the reduction of traffic congestion.
- Emphasize the continued revitalization of Downtown Hillsboro by increasing opportunities and support for cultural arts organizations.
- Provide clear direction for how City of Hillsboro Boards and Commissions can best support the City Council and community by evaluating their functions and roles.
- Lead and promote environmental sustainability initiatives, including support for electric vehicles, encouraging energy-efficient homes, and exploring a citywide residential composting program.
- Continue Hillsboro’s tradition of excellence in public safety by utilizing crime statistics and data-driven solutions to become an even safer city.
- Enhance our community’s economic competitiveness by attracting new investment and diversifying Hillsboro’s industrial base.
The Council's selected priorities are ongoing and can be created and completed within a one-to-two-year period with specific budget implications for the coming fiscal year; or, they may be long-range projects and programs that benefit from strong City Council participation and support.
The annual list of priorities is developed from the Hillsboro 2035 Community Plan, the City’s Strategic Plan, City departments’ Strategic Plans, and current major focus areas for the City as identified by staff and supported by the Council.
The 2035 Community Plan’s Vision Statement
In 2035, Hillsboro is a diverse, sustainable city known for success in blending urban lifestyle, a world-class local economy, agricultural heritage, and a welcoming, family-friendly community for an outstanding quality of life.
- Instill diversity, equity, and inclusion as essential parts of policy-making and the delivery of City services.
- Remain the full-opportunity, full-service City that serves all of our diverse community members in areas including, but not limited to, public safety, job creation, arts and recreation, libraries, housing supply, civic engagement, and transportation.
- Maintain community support for our public safety personnel and the vital services they deliver.
- Continue the City’s tradition of exceptional stewardship and accountability for City assets, including maintaining appropriate fiscal reserves and funding long-term asset maintenance programs.
- Maintain Hillsboro’s leadership role in supporting entrepreneurs and businesses of all sizes through strategic economic development that grows prosperity in our community, region, and state.
- Operate with transparency and openness.
- Listen to and engage the community in decision-making.
- Promote Hillsboro’s unique identity, while ensuring we grow and develop with consideration of our community’s agricultural roots and history.
- Continue to plan ahead for the City’s future success by focusing on environmental, fiscal, and economic sustainability.
- Support high-quality education and workforce development in Hillsboro.
City’s Mission Statement
“The City of Hillsboro is dedicated to providing visionary leadership, delivering responsive municipal services, and fostering collaborative partnerships that enhance Hillsboro's hometown livability.”
For the purposes of civic representation on the City Council, the City is divided into three wards, with two councilors residing within each ward. All councilors represent the entire City once elected. City Council is elected to four-year terms, and no person may serve more than two consecutive terms. Candidates must be registered voters in the State of Oregon who have resided in the City during the 12 months immediately preceding the election. Terms begin at the first City Council meeting of the calendar year following election, where the Oath of Office is administered.
For more than 90 years, the City of Hillsboro has utilized the Council-Manager form of government. Voters approved this form of government through the City of Hillsboro Charter, Hillsboro’s constitution, to create an exceptional place to live. Why is that? Let’s find out.
What is a Council-Manager form of government?
Hillsboro’s Council-Manager structure is a representative system that places political leadership in the hands of elected City Councilors. The structure also enlists the expertise and professional experience of an appointed City Manager to effectively deliver the services that the Council prioritizes for the City.
What are the advantages of a Council-Manager form of government?
Beyond professional expertise, the Council-Manager system brings accountability. The City Manager serves at the pleasure of the City Council, the elected representatives of the people. The Council-Manager system often leads to lower costs through improved productivity and efficient service delivery, and the effective use of technology. In addition, the local economy benefits from improved business development and retention strategies.
What role does the Council play?
The City Manager makes policy recommendations to the City Council, who decide whether to move forward on those recommendations. The Council also approves the budget, sets goals for the community, and evaluates the performance of the City Manager.
Because political power is concentrated in the entire Council rather than one elected official, more residents have an opportunity to serve the community in elected leadership.
What role does the Mayor play?
As a member of the City Council, the Mayor is a key political leader and policy developer, leading meetings and speaking on behalf of the community. The Mayor also facilitates communications between elected leaders and represents the City in discussions with other cities and governments.
What role do other community members play?
Residents and other stakeholders play a vital role in the decision-making process by electing representatives to the Council, by volunteering on advisory Boards and Commissions, by attending meetings, and by participating in planning for the City’s future, including the Hillsboro 2035 Community Plan.
Do other cities use a Council-Manager form of government?
As of 2017, roughly half of the more than 7,100 cities and towns in the United States with populations greater than 2,500 residents operate as Council-Manager governments. The structure also is used by more than 370 counties, for a total of more than 92 million Americans living in communities that use a Council-Manager form of government.
Nearly three in five cities with more than 100,000 residents use this form of government, including:
- Phoenix, Arizona - 1.5 million residents
- San Antonio, Texas - 1.4 million residents
- Dallas, Texas - 1.3 million residents
- San Jose, California - 1 million residents
- Austin, Texas - 900,000+ residents
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