police - May 17, 2:58 pm
ward3 - May 16, 3:56 pm
Karin's Note: Thursday, May 16, 2013
newsnet - May 16, 11:43 am
FIELD AT GRIJALVA PARK TO HONOR FALLEN SOLDIER - The Midvale Park Neighborhood Association and the Tucson Unified School District, along with numerous dignitaries from the City of Tucson and Pima County and countless friends from throughout the community, will dedicate the multi-use field in Grijalva Park in honor of U.S. Army Specialist Christopher J. Moon on Monday, May 20 at 8:15 a.m. Specialist Moon was a Tucson native who died as a result of hostile action in Afghanistan in 2010. The multi-use field is located adjacent to Grijalva Elementary School, 1795 W Drexel Road, where Chris was a student from first through fifth grade. This dedication is a celebration of Moon's life and achievements. Read the news release from Parks & Rec here.
AGENDA SPOTLIGHT: COMPENSATION PLAN - At the April 23rd M&C Study Session, staff was directed to return within 30 days with a report on inequities in the City's compensation structure. An item has been placed on today's Study Session agenda for staff to present the information requested by M&C. Compensation Plan adoption is scheduled for the Mayor & Council's May 21st meeting. Read the M&C memo here.
COUNTY ADMINISTRATIOR ASKS SUPERVISORS TO SUPPORT GAS TAX INCREASE - In their regular meeting today, the Pima County Board of Supervisors will consider recommendations from a transportation funding report prepared by County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry. The recommendations include lobbying the Arizona Legislature for a ten cent increase to the state's gas tax and restoration of swept Highway Use Revenue Funds. A recent report from the American Society of Civil Engineers recently gave the state a 'D' rating on its roads, with 52 percent rated in either poor or mediocre condition. From today's Star. Download the transportation funding report here.
HISTORIC PRESERVATION AWARDS THIS SATURDAY - Individuals and organizations that have contributed significantly to historic preservation in Tucson and Pima County will be recognized this Saturday at the annual Historic Preservation Awards Ceremony, hosted by the Tucson-Pima County Historical Commission and the Tucson Historic Preservation Foundation. The event will take place at 9 a.m. at the St. Phillips in the Hills Episcopal Church. Read the City of Tucson News Release here.
CONTRACT OPPORTUNITY: MANAGEMENT OF PARKING FACILITIES - The City of Tucson's ParkWise Division seeks a qualified contractor to assist in the security, management, operations and maintenance of its downtown facilities. Facilities to be managed include the Pennington St. Garage, Plaza Centro Garage, Depot Plaza Garage, Main Library Garage, City/State Garage, La Entrada (Tucson Water) Garage, as well as several City parking lots. Read the City of Tucson RFP here.
newsnet - May 14, 4:31 pm
Deputy City Manager Liz Miller has communicated to City Manager Richard Miranda that she will be leaving the City Manager's Office effective May 31. "Without a doubt, Deputy City Manager Miller has been a role model for all and she has contributed greatly to the mission of enhancing the quality of life of our community," said Miranda in a memo to M&C. "I will surely miss her and the consultation she has provided me over the years. I will be making a decision on her replacement in a short time." Read the memo from City Manager Miranda, with letter from Deputy City Manager Miller here.
newsnet - May 14, 3:42 pm
AGENDA SPOTLIGHT: PIMA MINE ROAD RECHARGE PIPELINE - Future access to a 36-inch pipeline that extends from the south end of the CAP canal in Avra Valley to the intersection of Pima Mine Road and Nogales Highway will be discussed at tomorrow's M&C Study Session. The pipeline, jointly owned by the City of Tucson and the CAP, was built to supply Colorado River water to the Pima Mine Road Recharge Project, an effort aimed at replenishing aquifers of the Upper Santa Cruz valley after decades of depletion due to farms, mines, golf courses and housing. At present, the only parties authorized to connect to the pipeline are Tucson Water and the Tohono Oodham Nation. Two additional water providers, (1) the Farmers Investment Company (FICO) and (2) the Community Water Company of Green Valley (CWC) are requesting access. The CWCs request presents a conflict for the City, as the connection it is requesting would supply a recharge project funded by the parent company of the proposed Rosemont Mine, which M&C has formally opposed. Read the M&C memo here, stories from the Star here and here.
BUDGET TOWN HALL TONIGHT AT WARD SIX - Ward Six Council Member Steve Kozachik is hosting a Town Hall meeting tonight on the Citys tentatively adopted budget for FY14. Assistant City Manager/Finance Director Kelly Gottschalk will be on hand to answer questions. The event will take place at the Ward Six Council Office, 3202 E. 1st St., from 6 to 7:30 p.m. This is the only currently scheduled town hall meeting on the budget. A final public hearing has been scheduled for the Mayor and Council meeting on May 21st.
TWO TOWN HALLS LEFT FOR PROPOSED WATER RATE INCREASES - Two remaining town halls are scheduled to discuss proposed options for water rates and fees for 2014. The options have been recommended by the Citizens Water Advisory Committee (CWAC). The proposed rate changes reflect an estimated increase from $2.91 to $3.68 in the monthly water bill for the average residential customer in a single family home. The first one is tomorrow, Tuesday, May 14th at Randolph Regional Center Mesquite Room, 200 S. Alvernon Way. Then the final one will be the following day, Wednesday, May 15th, at the William M. Clements Recreation Center, 8155 E. Poinciana Dr. Both start at 5:30 p.m. From KVOA.
PUBLIC HEARINGS TOMORROW ON CHANGES TO LAND & BUILDING CODES, FEES - Tomorrow's M&C Regular Session agenda includes public hearings on two proposed ordinances: (1) one amending the City's Land Use Code (LUC), the Unified Development Code (UDC), and supporting documents; and (2) and one amending the Development Review Fee Schedules. The City Managers Office recommends approval of both ordinances, which were reviewed by the City's Planning Commission last month. Read the M&C memo on proposed code changes here, M&C memo on proposed fee changes here.
JOB OPPORTUNITY: TUCSON WATER CALL CENTER REP - The Tucson Water Department is seeking individuals with call center experience for the position of Call Center Representative. This position handles customer questions, complaints and billing inquiries from Tucson Water customers at a rate averaging 80 to 100 calls per day. Minimum qualifications include a high school diploma or GED, and at least one year of call center experience involving heavy telephone contact, billing, and complaint resolution. Two years of experience or more are preferred, as is experience with utility billing. View the City of Tucson job posting here.
newsnet - May 14, 3:16 pm
CITY BUSINESS INCENTIVES TRANSFORMING DOWNTOWN - On Tuesday M&C voted to move forward on property tax incentives for The Cadence, a mixed-use student housing development at Congress and Toole, under the City's GPLET (Government Property Lease Excise Tax) program. If approved, The Cadence will become the city's second GPLET project to get underway. Last month, the council approved a GPLET for One East Broadway, a mixed use project under construction at Broadway and Stone. Additionally, a partnership between Peach Properties and Holualoa Companies is awaiting final GPLET approval on its redevelopment of the Armory Park Apartments at 12th St. and Fifth Ave. And developer Scott Stiteler has applied for GPLET incentives on the Rialto Block and a proposed hotel project. From Inside Tucson Business. Read the City's info page on Central Business District and its incentive programs here.
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE FEATURES TUCSON AS HIP TRAVEL DESTINATION - Tucson is skewing younger and hipper with coffeehouses, restaurants, shops and an artists' neighborhoods, writes Janis Cooke Newman in her profile this week of Tucson. She features the Dunbar-Spring Neighborhood, the Center for Creative Photography, BICAS, Barrio Anita, and more, in a travel feature titled, "Hip Little Tucson Heats Up." From the San Francisco Chronicle.
AGENDA SPOTLIGHT: ESTABLISHING AN ACCESS TO CARE TAX - At the request of the City Manager, an item has been placed on next Tuesday's M&C Study Session to discuss creating an access to care tax, a hospital tax that would allow Tucson's hospitals to draw down federal Medicaid funds. A state law passed in 2011 gives municipalities the authority to pursue federal matching funds through this type of mechanism. The City of Phoenix recently adopted an similar ordinance. Under the Phoenix ordinance, costs may not be shifted to patients, health plans or the City. The proposed program will help local hospitals alleviate the fiscal impact of the uncompensated care they provide. Read the M&C memo here.
MAY IS BUILDING SAFETY MONTH - The City of Tucson Planning and Development Services Department will be observing May as Building Safety Month. Founded by the International Code Council (ICC), Building Safety Month (BSM) is celebrated by jurisdictions worldwide. Building Safety Month is a public awareness campaign offered each year to help individuals, families and businesses understand how their local building code officials help the community to create safe and sustainable structures. The campaign reinforces the need for adoption of modern, model building codes, a strong and efficient system of code administration, and a well-trained, professional workforce to maintain the system. News release from Planning & Development Services here.
REMINDER: MENLO PARK CELEBRATION TOMORROW - Neighborhood residents, officials from the City of Tucson and Pima County, and community partners will gather tomorrow morning at the Menlo Park Plaza to celebrate the Menlo Park Neighborhood Revitalization Project. The project includes new park amenities, transportation improvements, safety improvements, and environmental sustainability improvements. The project was paid for with funding from a combination of county bonds, city bonds, CDBG, Back to Basics, and other funding sources. The celebration starts at 10 a.m. Read the news release from Parks & Rec here.
newsnet - May 14, 3:04 pm
TPD MEMORIAL SERVICE HONORS FALLEN OFFICERS - Officers killed in the line of duty were honored and remembered yesterday at a memorial service at Tucson Police Department Memorial Plaza. Dozens of officers gathered to pay tribute. Eight red roses and several wreaths symbolized the end of watch for eight Tucson police officers. One by one, families brought up the roses as the names of fallen officers were read aloud. Officers who left behind families and friends, many of them still grieving. "It's not how our officers died that made them heroes, it's how they lived," said Tucson Police Department Chief Roberto Villasenor. The City of Tucson solemnly remembers the service and sacrifice of William Elliot, William Katzenstein, Robert Cummins, Barry Headricks, James Smith, Jeffery Ross, Patrick Hardesty, and Erik Hite. Story from KOLD/KMSB here, story from the Star here.
SOUTH TUCSON POLICE CHIEF RETIRING - South Tucson Police Chief Richard Muñoz, a retired TPD officer, will retire tomorrow from the South Tucson Police Department after more than three decades in law enforcement. Muñoz began working for STPD in 2002. "South Tucson has been more of a family, and my time here was an eye-opening experience"; said Muñoz. "It would have been very difficult without all the help I received from Deputy Chief Richard Vidaurri and City Manager [Enrique] Serna," said Muñoz. He will be replaced by incoming Chief William Lackey, who has been with the department since 2001. From the Star.
SUN TRAN ANNOUNCES SMART CARD FARE SYSTEM LAUNCH - Sun Tran is announcing the launch of SunGO, a new fare payment system coming to transit vehicles on Sunday, June 30, 2013. The SunGO fare payment system utilizes smart card technology to facilitate fare payments and transfers throughout the Sun Tran and Sun Express service areas, and soon the Sun Link modern streetcar. The new technology will also facilitate the collection of improved ridership data to improve future service and achieve greater efficiencies, according to City of Tucson Transportation Director, Daryl Cole. From KOLD/KMSB. Read the news release from Sun Tran here.
TOWN HALL TONIGHT ON WATER RATE INCREASES, TWO MORE NEXT WEEK - Tucson Water is hosting one of four scheduled town hall meetings tonight at the Quincie Douglas Library, near 36th and Campbell, to discuss the three options for FY14 water rates and fees proposed by the Citizens Water Advisory Committee (CWAC). Rate changes could result in an estimated increase from $2.91 to $3.68 in the monthly water bill for the average residential customer in a single family home. Nearly 90% of Tucson Water customers are residential accounts. Next week's town halls will be held on Tuesday May 14th and Wednesday May 15th, at the Randolph Center Mesquite Room and Clements Recreation Center, respectively. From KOLD/KMSB. Read the news release from Tucson Water here.
CONTRACT OPPORTUNITY: ORAL INTERPRETATION SERVICES - The City of Tucson is seeking proposals from qualified firms for the provision of phone oral interpretation services for the Tucson Police, Fire Departments Dispatch Centers and various City Departments. The successful Contractor will provide interpretation services for the 911 emergency dispatch center and upon request to City departments as they interface with citizens, businesses and visitors. The services shall include oral interpretation of Spanish, Afro-Asiatic, Romance, Germanic, Slavic, and Asian. Read the City of Tucson RFP here.
transportation - May 13, 10:44 am
Intermountain Slurry Seal, under contract with the City of Tucson Department of Transportation (TDOT), will begin a micro-surfacing program on the following dates at the following locations:
Monday, May 13, 2013 and Tuesday, May 14, 2013 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Harrison Road - Golf Links Road to Magdalena Road. Approaches to the intersections at Harrison Road and 29th Street, Harrison Road and 22nd Street and Harrison Road and Old Spanish Trail will also be done.
transportation - May 13, 10:35 am
The Sun Link Tucson Streetcar project team has completed the installation of track along Congress Street from Church Avenue to Granada Avenue. As of Thursday, May 9, 2013, all of Congress Street is open to at least one travel lane. Crews will continue work on the installation of signals, the overhead contact system (electrical) and sidewalks. The final layer of asphalt will be placed later this summer.
newsnet - May 12, 10:25 pm
STREET REPAIR SPOTLIGHT: NEIGHBORHOOD STREET WORK - Beginning today, Granite Construction Co., under contract with the City of Tucson Department of Transportation (TDOT), will apply slurry seal to all the residential streets in three neighborhood areas: (1) between Country Club and Alvernon, Pima and Speedway; (2) Swan, Craycroft, Fifth and Broadway; and (3) Pantano, Harrison, Golf Links and Sellarole. Crews will be working from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. The pavement improvement project is part of the Fiscal Year 2013 Mayor and Council approved Pavement Preservation Program, a one-year, $20 million street rehabilitation program to resurface arterial, collector and residential streets. Read the News release from TDOT. FY14 BUDGET TENTATIVELY ADOPTED - M&C tentatively adopted the City Manager's recommended budget for Fiscal 2014 in their regular session last night. The budget includes a 55-cent hourly wage increase for permanent city workers, and measures to close a deficit of about $15M through debt restructuring, land sales, and other means. Although tentatively adopted, the budget must still return to M&C for final approval after another public hearing, scheduled for May 21. The vote was 5-2 (Council Members Cunningham and Kozachik dissenting). From KVOA.
PARKWISE FIVE-YEAR PLAN APPROVED: SMART METERS, NEW RATES ON THE WAY - On April 4, 2013, the ParkWise Commission recommended various adjustments to Downtown parking rates and fees, including increases to on-street meter rates and some discounts elsewhere, expected to increase revenue by $350K in 2014 and larger amounts in succeeding years. The new revenue will allow ParkWise to address a list of capital needs, including access and revenue control systems for downtown parking garages, and smart meter systems capable of accepting credit and debit cards. From the Star. Read the M&C memo here. Download the slide presentation on five-year plan here. EL RIO GOLF COURSE COULD BECOME PRIVATE COLLEGE CAMPUS - Staff from the City and Grand Canyon University, a private Phoenix-based Christian college, have been discussing the terms of a possible sale or lease agreement for a school campus on the site of El Rio Golf Course. Potential benefits range from an increase in jobs and capital investment to additional educational opportunities for Tucson's West Side. Concerns include the reduction of current golf operations, an existing contract with the Tucson Conquistadors for the First Tee program at El Rio, and the need for improvements to the adjacent Joaquin Murrieta Park. Story from from KOLD/KMSB here. Story from the Star here. AIRPORT AUTHORITY BREAKS GROUND ON SOLAR PARKING SHADE PROJECT - Work has begun on a solar project expected to replace about 40 percent of the Tucson International Airports electrical energy needs, via photovoltaic panels covering its parking lot. "It'll be a tremendous emission savings and power savings for us, and it will provide covered parking for our customers as a side benefit," said Tucson Airport Authority (TAA) President Bonnie Allin. Tucson International Airport is owned by the City of Tucson and operated by TAA under a lease agreement. From Arizona Public Media.