PUBLIC SERVICES & INFRASTRUCTURE
As a full service community, residents within the corporate limits of Shepherdstown enjoy a wide range of services that contribute positively to the quality of life and livability of the community. Ensuring that the types of services that are being provided meet the needs and expectations of the community, and that they are being provided as efficiently and effectively as possible is critical to maintaining faith in local government and making Shepherdstown an attractive place to live and do business.
The town’s situation is somewhat unique in that it is quite small, in both physical size and population, when compared to the surrounding urbanized area. Many times the number of residents of the larger community benefit to some degree, whether directly or indirectly, from the services that the town provides. The small size of the tax and fee paying base, however, makes it difficult to achieve the economies of scale that are necessary to provide some services in a cost effective manner. This, in turn, limits the town’s ability to provide certain services and can restrict the scale at which other services are provided.
Moving forward, it will be critical for the community to seek efficiencies at every opportunity to ensure that it can continue to provide the services that make Shepherdstown such an attractive place to live. To do so, the town will need to expand the size of the base to which these services are provided (and supports them financially) to help guarantee the long term sustainability of the current levels of service.