NewsNet 05-19-15

SURVEYS LAUNCHED TO GATHER OPINIONS ABOUT IMPENDING POSTAL CONSOLIDATION - Two surveys - one for businesses and one for the community - are online to gauge reaction to the second phase of the mail processing consolidation, which would move most of Tucson's main postal operations on South Cherrybell Stravenue to Phoenix. Opponents complain that the consolidation, scheduled for July 11, would delay mail delivery in Tucson. If the consolidation moves forward as proposed, the only function left at the Cherrybell station would be retail services and P.O. boxes. Tucson Vice Mayor Richard Fimbres and a coalition of community leaders launched the bilingual surveys to hear about Southern Arizonans’ experience with the U.S. Postal Service. The findings will be passed on to U.S. Rep. Martha McSally and other congressional delegations to be presented to U.S. Postmaster General Megan Brennan, said Fimbres. The ultimate goal is to have a moratorium issued against Tucson’s consolidation, he said. The online surveys will be available until May 30. Read more from the Arizona Daily Star and Vice Mayor Fimbres news release.

TUCSON POLICE CHIEF VISITS NEW JERSEY FOR NATIONAL COMMUNITY POLICING CONFERENCE - Tucson Police Chief Roberto Villaseñor yesterday took part in a panel of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing, made up of criminal justice leaders, community leaders, academics, and youth leaders. The mission of the panel created by President Obama is to identify best practices and make recommendations on how such practices can promote effective crime reduction and build public trust. Over several months, the task force held public hearings across the country, took testimony from more than 100 witnesses, reviewed hundreds of written submissions, and came to consensus on 59 recommendations. The Task Force on 21st Century Policing presented an interim report, including recommendations regarding policies, training, transparency, accountability, technology, and officer safety and wellness Read the news release from Tucson Police Department.

THIRD STREET TO BE REPAVED FOR CAMPBELL AVENUE TO TUCSON BOULEVARD - Beginning tomorrow, crews from Intermountain Slurry Seal, under contract with the City of Tucson Department of Transportation (TDOT), will begin milling (removing asphalt) and repaving Third Street between Campbell Avenue and Tucson Boulevard. Third Street will be closed to all through traffic tomorrow for the milling work and again next Wednesday for the repaving. The closures both days will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. In between the milling and repaving work, crews will crack seal and patch the milled roadway. That work will take place between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. with periodic travel lane restrictions. Since Third Street is a popular bikeway, detours for bicyclists will be in place. The pavement improvement project is part of the five-year, $100 million Road Recovery street bond program approved by voters in 2012. Read the news release.
Bond Oversight Commission Annual Report

PUBLIC HEARING TONIGHT ON WATER RATES - The Mayor and Tucson City Council will hold a public hearing tonight at 5:30 on a proposed water rate increase. The Council is considering two different options. One would increase average overall monthly rates by $2.61 and the other option would add $4.13 to monthly bills. Any new rate schedule adopted by Mayor and Council following tonight’s public hearing would become effective July 6. Tucson Water is a self-supporting department of the City of Tucson. Its rates and fees must cover all costs associated with delivering quality water to the 712,000 customers within its service area. Read the Mayor and Council agenda materials.

MAY IS TUCSON FITNESS MONTH - Tucson Fitness Month continues during the rest of this month. An initiative of Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, the special month offers plenty of free fitness classes, courtesy of the Tucson Parks and Recreation Department, Tucson Fire Department, Tucson Jewish Community Center, Tucson YMCA, and other organizations.