FY21-23 Gaston County Strategic Plan

Gaston County’s first ever strategic plan was drafted between October of 2020 and March of 2021. The plan will be the County’s roadmap for fiscal years 2022 and 2023, and the vision, mission, and core values will sustain the organization far into the future. 

The County’s mission describes the fundamental purpose of Gaston County Government—to provide excellent public service every day. By embodying its mission every single day, the County moves closer toward achieving its vision for the future. The vision statement is a bold declaration if intention for the future and is the anticipated outcome of a long-lived strategic planning process.




Gaston County Government will be a model of excellence in public service leadership, innovation, collaboration and inclusion, ensuring the safety and well-being of residents, preserving natural resources and providing recreational, cultural and economic opportunities that lead to global success and set the stage for future generations.


We Value People.
We Value County Employees.
We Value Relationships.
We Value Quality and Creativity.
We Value Our Resources and Resiliency.

From Strategy to Action

The County’s strategic plan guides how decisions are made, establishes a vision for long-term planning, and creates a strategic foundation that impacts service delivery. Through a collaborative development process, the County identified goals for performance, which are grouped into three strategic focus areas. Goals are designed to be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. Each goal is assigned to a County department, which is responsible for carrying out or more associated initiatives and reporting metrics on a regular basis. These metrics enable County leadership to evaluate progress towards strategic goals, which will inform the County’s approach to performance management and continuous improvement in years to come.

The County will begin reporting on performance metrics in February 2022. Thereafter, performance metrics will be reported and analyzed biannually, each August and February. The following section summarizes the County’s strategic goals and associated performance targets for each of the three focus areas. 


Gaston County residents rely on services provided by the county to keep them safe, provide emergency medical transport, support their health, and connect them to other services.

C1: Ensure that safety, health, and social services are responsive, equitable, and customer-focused.

Gaston County looks for ways to continuously improve its service delivery. Timeliness of response is a crucial goal for departments delivering safety, health, and social services. By analyzing best practices from other organizations and paying attention to customer feedback, departments will hone their ability to serve the community with compassion and fairness. 

  • Monitor and analyze responsiveness to 911 emergency calls and ensure excellent response to citizen needs at the most critical times.
  • Improve the availability and timeliness of Emergency Medical Services ambulance response by working with CaroMont Regional Medical Center to reduce the time needed to transfer a patient and initiate care.
  • Recruit, hire, and retain employees that reflect the diverse population of the community they serve. 

C2: Foster a culture of healthy living in Gaston County.

Achieving a “culture of healthy living” means that every county resident has the opportunity to be as healthy as possible. Recognizing the differing health challenges that residents may face – due to factors such as pre-existing conditions, socio-economic status, risk factors, living conditions and life experiences – is crucial to providing services in an equitable way.

  • Provide effective health education by understanding diverse languages and cultures and adapting services so that residents understand and accept assistance.
  • Increase access to healthy food options, nutrition education, and safe, accessible areas for physical activity and exercise. 

C3: Improve access to and coordination of services for a diverse community, including the vulnerable and marginalized.

By paying close attention to demographic changes in the community, and by continuously communicating with each other about changes in demand for services, County departments can position themselves to adapt and innovate so that their services are most accessible and best suited to the people they serve. 

  • Collaborate across departments to understand changes in the demographics of the county, especially at-risk populations, and address the needs of residents.
  • Re-imagine the time, place, and manner of service delivery to take services where they are needed rather than always requiring residents to come to County facilities.