Ward 2 Council Member Paul Cunningham
Last year, we had a situation with a well site in the Palo Verde Park neighborhood. It was basically an empty piece of hardscape that was an invitation to illegal dumping. The fact that it was hard-packed earth also meant that rain would run off of it and damage people’s property. Still, the neighbors wanted it to remain open. They had used it as a dog run for years and wanted to keep it that way.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve gotten some disturbing news about vandalism at Jesse Owens Park.
The maintenance compound at the park was broken into late last month and equipment and vehicles were vandalized. Later, a bathroom was also vandalized.
Happy New Year!
I’d like to announce a new member of my staff, Patrick Burns. Pat has previously worked for Mayor Rothschild and has already hit the ground running helping with grant applications. Welcome to the Ward 2 staff, Pat.
This will be the last time I write you a note before the Christmas holiday, so I wanted to take the time to wish all of you that celebrate a Merry Christmas and a joyful holiday season to all of you.
2022 is only a couple of weeks away; can you believe it?
At Tuesday’s Mayor and Council meeting, my colleagues and I voted to make Deputy Chief Chad Kasmar the Chief of the Tucson Police Department as current Chief Chris Magnus was confirmed to lead US Customs and Border Protection.
Magnus has been a reformer at our police department. Things haven’t always been smooth or perfect, but he’s brought change and that counts. I know he’ll do a great job at the CBP.
In coordination with the Presidential proclamation, Governor Doug Ducey has ordered flags at all state buildings be lowered to half-staff immediately until sunset on December 9, 2021 to honor former Senator Bob Dole, who died yesterday at age 98.
I can’t leave unaddressed the two incidents involving the Tucson Police Department this week. I’m limited in what I can say given that there are ongoing investigations, but I will say that both left me very concerned and angry.
El Tour de Tucson is this weekend. It’s our premier bicycle event in a city where we are often picked as a top bicycling destination.
It’s traditionally a big draw for out-of-town visitors. Estimates I’ve seen range from between $10 million and $12 million in economic impact for our city.
The old Pima County Courthouse is an icon, sometimes not necessarily of our community. It showed up in an establishing shot on an episode of the X-Files once and was identified as the San Diego County courthouse. It also stood in as the Cochise County courthouse on the show Sheriff of Cochise back in the 1950s. Long time Tucsonans can name a friend or relative that was an extra on the 1970’s drama Petrocelli, where the building served as the courthouse for the fictional city of San Remo.
There are some changes that the city is evaluating regarding several items in the Unified Development Code, the document that covers our city’s building code.
One of the items that is being evaluated is a change to our commercial parking requirements that would require electric vehicle charging infrastructure. This would apply to parking lots in multi-family and commercial developments, not to single family residences.
I received an update from Police Chief Christopher Magnus about TPD recruiting. I wanted to share it with you.
Given our staffing challenges, we thought it might be useful for you to get a sense of some of our outreach and recruiting efforts. If you have ideas or suggestion about other opportunities to recruit new officers or CSOs, please let me know and we will happily follow-up on them.
Remember that this Friday, the van will be visiting Claire Weeks/Terra Del Sol Park from 3-5. Next month's schedule is below:
Former Old Fort Lowell Neighborhood Association president Kathleen Flasch passed away. I’d like to extend my condolences on behalf of my staff and our Ward 2 friends to her husband Frank and her whole family.
Kathleen was born in England and came to Tucson by way of Chicago. She was a world traveler, a huge fan of the Rolling Stones and a tenacious advocate for her neighborhood since first moving there in 2001.
My office got several calls and emails about a shredding/household hazardous waste drop-off that was originally scheduled for Pima College Downtown Campus on Saturday. Unfortunately for the people that showed up, the event had been moved. My staff contacted Environmental and General Services (EGSD), which organized the event, and got this reply:
You may be hearing the initials ADU, which stands for Accessory Dwelling Unit. Basically, these are smaller, second houses built on a lot with a larger house. My colleagues and I are considering making code changes that will make them easier to build in Tucson.