PA: BeST Transit Begins Strategic Planning Process

May 30--BeST Transit management and board members have begun the process of forming a strategic plan for the organization's next few years.

The board of directors agreed in March to start working on a strategic plan to carry the authority through 2018. Management met with a consultant earlier this month to kick off the process, general manager Bill Nichols told the board this week.

During the strategic planning process, staff will identify four to six issues and develop an action plan for resolving each issue, Nichols said.

Board members and management will meet June 11 in Williamsport for another strategic planning session, where participants will review the authority's mission statement, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and begin to define what the organization brings to its stakeholders.

Another session will also be held at BeST's Greens Landing headquarters before the start of the June 25 board meeting, Nichols said. Consultant Ted Poister will attend the meeting to review the plan's progress to that point.

The board is expected to review and finalize a draft strategic plan in the fall, Nichols said.

The plan will point BeST Transit in a clear direction as it approaches the final year of a technical assistance grant with the state Department of Transportation. The grant has been used to offset administrative costs for officials from River Valley Transit in Williamsport to assume management duties at the authority.

"We need to have a long-range gameplan" regarding the relationship between the two organizations, Nichols said.

BeST has taken on a greater share of administrative costs in the 2014-15 budget to prepare for the transition, Nichols said.

Amanda Renko can be reached at (570) 888-9652; or email:

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