UTSA named one of 12 SA2020 lead partners

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(May 25, 2012) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) College of Public Policy has been named the lead partner of the SA2020 "Government Accountability and Civic Engagement" focus area, one of 11 areas outlined in Mayor Julian Castro's SA2020 to transform San Antonio into a world-class city over the next eight years. The announcement formalizes a year-plus partnership between the UTSA College of Public Policy and City of San Antonio in support of the SA2020 vision.

The SA2020 effort is a strategic vision to revitalize the city of San Antonio into a world-class city with a "small town feel." The plan, available at www.sa2020.org, aims to catalyze the city's transformation in 11 key focus areas: arts and culture, community safety, downtown development, economic competitiveness, education, family well-being, government accountability and civic engagement, health and fitness, natural resources and environmental sustainability, neighborhoods and growth management, and transportation.

By 2020, San Antonio expects its citizens will become deeply engaged as elected leaders, business leaders, volunteers and voters in the process of making government more responsible and accountable to San Antonians. In doing so, the City of San Antonio expects to experience an increase in:

  • voter turnout
  • participation and diversity of city boards
  • the number of graduates in leadership programs
  • the number of community and neighborhood associations
  • the amount of media coverage on public policy issues
  • the number of candidates running for City Council

The UTSA College of Public Policy has been instrumental in supporting the SA2020 effort, particularly in the Government Accountability and Civic Engagement focus area. In April 2011, the college hosted a Great Cities Dialogue to foster discussion about how to increase and improve civic engagement and government accountability in San Antonio. In December, UTSA graduate students majoring in social work presented a newly drafted Citizens' Bill of Rights and Responsibilities at the Great Cities Dialogue in support of SA2020. The document, which aims to improve citizen-government relations, outlines the expectations San Antonio citizens have of their government and the responsibilities they expect to have in return.

"For more than a year, the UTSA College of Public Policy has worked very closely with SA2020 leaders and partners," said Francine Romero, COPP associate dean. "We are pleased to be a recognized leader in the area of Government Accountability and Civic Engagement, and we look forward to making a significant and long-lasting impact that will support the transformation of San Antonio."