The City of Corinth Receives 3-Star Community Rating

The City of Corinth Receives 3-Star Community Rating

by Steve Gamel

The City of Corinth announced on Sept. 5 that it had been awarded a 3-STAR Community Rating for national leadership and sustainability by STAR Communities. Corinth is the 74th city in the nation to receive the designation, which officials say is a perfect indicator of how much the community has evolved in recent years.

Communities pursuing STAR certification accumulate points for their achievements across seven goal areas, including the built environment, climate and energy, economy and jobs, education, arts and community, health and safety, and natural systems. According to the City website, Corinth received a score of 310.6 and was recognized as a 3-star community.

There are three STAR levels:
3-STAR (250-449)
4-STAR (450-649)
5-STAR (650 +)

“We are truly honored to be recognized as a 3-Star Community for national leadership in sustainability. To make a significant impact in the community, we needed a solid framework and a proven system to assess the community’s strengths and weaknesses across social, economic and environmental conditions to benchmark and measure our performance, and the STAR Rating System provided that framework and tools, ” City Manager Bob Hart said in a press release on the City website. “We are using the STAR program as a roadmap for our community-wide, Strategic Plan to serve as an engagement guide toward sustainability to ensure that our resources are being directed in the most efficient and effective manner.”

Per the city website, STAR is the nation’s leading framework and certification program for evaluating local sustainability, which encompasses social, economic, and environmental performance measures. For instance, communities get credit for reductions in energy use or increased transportation access. STAR Communities provides support as localities benchmark progress, and a robust third-party verification process ensures accountability.

Several efforts stood out among Corinth’s sustainability initiatives. For starters, Corinth residents have access to quality parks and open spaces, with 74% of residents living within a ½ mile walk of a park and 94% having reported visiting a park within the past year. On top of that, the area has experienced considerable growth in recent years, including in employment and the decreased levels of unemployment. The City press release stated that 86.5 percent of the community’s residents meet or exceed the standard living wage for the region. Corinth also scored high in health and safety, achieving a perfect score by demonstrating low rates of violent crimes, no incidents in city schools in the past three years, and a quality local hospital system.

“The STAR rating process gives cities a roadmap for how they can refine and improve their operations to drive continuous improvement,” Hilari Varnadore, executive director of STAR Communities, said in the release. “Corinth should be applauded for its commitment to sustainability, and for the clarity and transparency provided while achieving its goals.”

Murray Media Group and Lake Cities Living magazine would like to congratulate the City of Corinth.

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