Strategic planning is the community process of defining it's strategy, or direction, and making decisions on allocating resources to pursue the strategy. Strategy generally involves setting goals, determining actions to achieve the goals, and mobilizing resources to execute the actions.
What are your community goals and plans for the future? What is your one and five year plan for capital improvements? Have you looked at the financial health of your community, determined community development priorities, set goals, and created a written plan (or road map if you will) to implement your goals?
Strategic planning begins with bringing community members together with local officials to discuss ideas and community development initiatives. Local leaders are able to provide insight to priority infrastructure needs that many community members may not have knowledge of. A discussion needs to occur on how an improvement project is paid for, and by the residents who will bear that cost.
If through the planning process community members determine a priority is to clean up their town; then that is a matter of elbow grease. Plan a spring clean-up day and get community members and service clubs involved to assist others with clean-up activities. Make it a community-wide event and ask everyone to participate.