Karin's Note: Friday, February 5, 2016

Karin's Note: Friday, February 5, 2016
  • Ward 3 Events
  • Neighborhood Association/Coalition Meetings
  • City Spotlight
  • Community-Wide Events
  • Did You Know?
Dear Tucsonans,
I am looking for interested and qualified candidates for the following Boards and Commissions, so please let me know if you’d like to toss your name in the hat for consideration. You can call our office at 520-791-4711
  • Tucson-Pima County Historical Commission
  • Tucson Parks and Recreation Commission
  • Planning Commission
I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the City employees who are retiring this week under the Manager’s recommended incentive program. We continue to learn of colleagues in fellow council offices and departments such as Parks & Recreation that are among those we will greatly miss. Thank you for your years of hard work, ingenuity, and dedication. Your service to the public has made a profound difference for this city that we all love.
Our Office
As you may know by now, Matt Kopec left our staff to join the Arizona State Legislature last month. Next month, Brianda Torres is moving to Boise, Idaho to be closer to family.
As you can imagine, that means enormous change for our work. I have decided to take pause and review the structure of our staffing and service to the community. Quite honestly, I cannot justify rushing to sustain “business as usual” in our Ward office when the Manager and Mayor & Council have rightly challenged all departments to be ready for change – substantial operational and budgetary change.
As I explore scenarios for moving forward, I will keep the voter-approved Charter changes (which more squarely place City operations under the purview of the City Manager) in mind. I will be choosing approaches that provide greater accountability and responsiveness in services for our community and that keeps my own work centered on representing City residents in policy and budget decisions.
Thanks for your patience as we take this transition time to be deliberate in mapping next steps.
Next Mayor & Council Meeting
The next meeting of Mayor & Council will be Tuesday, February 9th. Study Session includes items on the Parks & Recreation System Master Plan and models for partnering with the private sector on transit operations. The Regular Agenda items pertaining to the Fairview and Limberlost Annexation District and the Dos Hombres rezoning at Columbus Blvd may be of interest to Ward 3 residents. Also I am joining Council Member Fimbres in requesting M/C to approve commemorative naming of the Central Avra Valley Solar Array for former Council Member Steve Leal. Here’s the link to the agendas and materials for your review and feedback:
Ward 3 Events: 
Desert Wildflowers
Saturday, February 6th 2:00 – 3:00 pm
Woods Memorial Library Large Meeting Room
Springtime in the desert is a time to enjoy the beauty, color, and rich variety of local wildflowers. Learn about our abundant annual and perennial wildflowers during an engaging and colorful digital slide presentation.
Valley of the Moon’s Fourth Annual Campfire Sing-along
Saturday, February 6th 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Valley of the Moon 2544 E. Allen Rd.
Warm your feet with the fire and your soul with the singing. We all sound better together, so raise your voice in song! This is one of Valley of the Moon’s best community events all year, so bring the whole family and grow with us through the magic of music. Song leaders this year include Bruce Phillips, Mark Holdaway, Gary Bear, and the Green Man! Admission, marshmallows and hot cocoa are FREE for all comers. Bring a blanket to sit on or your own chairs if you prefer. Acoustic instruments of all shapes and sizes are welcome! Come join in the jam.
Senior Pride Community Forum
Sunday, February 7th 1:00 – 5:00 pm
Jewish Community Center 3800 E. River Rd.
Our Legacy and Our Future community forum for LGBT elders and allies will feature the Southwest premiere of the feature length documentary film Reel in the Closet – a collection of home movies tracing decades of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender lives. Generations of LGBT people quietly lived their lives, when to be open about identity risked loss of jobs, families, as well as arrests and violence. Stu Maddox reveals this hidden history by unearthing rare home movies – some dating back to the 1930’s – that have long languished in people’s closets. Projecting the viewer back in time, these private moments open a fascinating window into the vibrancy of unheralded LGBT lives. Filmmaker Stu Maddux, who also produced Gen Silent in 2011, will speak at the screening and respond to questions. Other speakers will include Serena Worthington, Director of National Field Initiatives for SAGE (Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Elders), who will discuss crucial issues and advocacy for LGBT Elders and Joseph Howell, who will share oral history clips from the Arizona Queer Archives and give a how-to session on organizing and donating your own archival collection. In addition to a variety of vendors, raffles, snacks and other fun opportunities, organization serving LGBT seniors will have information tables. For more information visit http://soazseniorpride.org/, email soazseniorpride@gmail.com or call 704-5830.
Free Parenting Classes
Tuesday, February 9th 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Woods Memorial Library - Large Meeting Room
Got kids? Do you ever wish they came with an instruction booklet? Attend our 5 session parenting young children class. Learn skills that will lead to less parental stress: Helping young children learn to cooperate, understanding young children's behaviors, child development and temperament, encouraging your child and yourself, discipline that makes sense, and building self-esteem.  Presented by The Parent Connection.
Dunbar Book Signing
Saturday, February 13th 2:00 – 3:30 pm
Woods Memorial Library Large Meeting Room
Dunbar: The Neighborhood, the School, and the People 1940-1965 author Aloma J. Barnes is a long-time resident of the Dunbar neighborhood of Tucson, Arizona. She is a retired nurse and newspaper woman who has spent the past two years researching and interviewing the faculty and students of the Dunbar elementary and junior high schools to share its story. Barnes will discuss her new book and answer your questions. She is happy to sign your previously purchased copy of Dunbar: The Neighborhood, the School, and the People 1940-1965 (Wheatmark 2015).
Neighborhood Association/Coalition Meetings:
Mountain/1st NA & CAG Meeting
Saturday, February 13th 9:00 – 11:00 am
Mitchell Park 1100 E. Mitchell St.
Samos NA Meeting
Tuesday, February 16th 6:30 – 8:00 pm
Salpointe Trophy Room 1545 E. Copper St.
Ward 3 Neighbors Alliance (W3NA) Meeting
Wednesday, February 17th 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Woods Memorial Library 3455 N. 1st Ave.
Mountain View NA Meeting
Thursday, February 18th 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Habitat for Humanity 3501 N. Mountain Ave.
City Spotlight:
VITA Program
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program offers FREE tax preparation to individuals and families with annual income under $62,000. In 2015, VITA saved Southern Arizona taxpayers more than $4 million in tax preparation fees and brought back $25.7 million in federal refunds and credits! VITA services are available at the Ward 3 Council Office 1510 E. Grant Rd. along with many other locations. Visit our office or any Pima County Public Library branch to pick up a brochure, or visit http://unitedwaytucson.org/vita, for more information – including what you’ll need to bring with you for tax preparation.
Volunteer Information Session
Tuesday, February 16th 5:30 – 7:00 pm
Our Family Services 3830 E. Bellevue St.
Are you interested in making a difference? Volunteers of the Center for Community Dialogue, a program of Our Family Services, play a crucial role in the delivery of services for the Center through mediation, elder mediation, Elder Circles and other ongoing Circles, community forums, facilitation, workshops, and training. If you are interested in helping Southern Arizonans have meaningful conversations in a skilled, civil and respectful way come learn about what we do and how you can be involved. We'll have active volunteers from our various services on hand to provide information, share their experiences, and answer your questions. Healthy and yummy snacks will be provided as well. Please click here to RSVP or contact Catherine Tornbom at ctornbom@ourfamilyservices.org for more information.
Community-Wide Events: 
Household Hazardous Waste Collection
Saturday, February 6th 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Eastside Service Center 7575 E. Speedway Blvd.
Do you have unused chemicals, oils, or pesticides sitting in your shed or garage? The City of Tucson is hosting a Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection this Saturday at the Eastside Service Center. Drop off at HHW is free for City of Tucson residents. There is a fee of $10 for each television and $2 for each monitor brought in without a computer. For more information on the Household Hazardous Waste Program visit https://www.tucsonaz.gov/es/household-hazardous-waste.
El Rio Free Health Fair
Saturday, February 6th 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
El Rio Neighborhood Center 1390 W. Speedway Blvd.
The University of Arizona College of Pharmacy and Tucson Parks and Recreation will host their annual Health Fair at El Rio Neighborhood Center. This health fair will focus on providing free health services and health information to members of the Tucson community by offering screenings for osteoporosis, diabetes, blood pressure, cholesterol, hearing, breathing, vision, and medication reviews. There also will be activities for children, including a jumping castle, face painting and TMC will be giving away booster seats. Moreover, there will be raffle prizes and a yoga class for adults.  This event is free and open to the public. Spanish translators will be available. Contact Paul Ponce at Paul.Ponce@tucsonaz.gov or 791-4683 for more information.
Did You Know...?
Downtown Tucson Gift Card Available In Various Denominations 
With the Downtown Tucson eGift Card, you can share a taste of what Tucson has to offer. The gift card is valid at more than 70 participating businesses in the downtown area and can be loaded instantly on a smartphone. Gift card recipients can buy a SunGo 1-Day Ticket to ride the Sun Link streetcar for 24 hours to spend their gift and attend more than 40 gem shows open through February 14th. Downtown Tucson eGift Cards can be purchased online at http://downtowntucson.instagift.com/. For a full list of participating merchants via Downtown Tucson Partnership visit https://www.downtowntucson.org/live-work/gift-card/. More information about the Sun Link streetcar can be found at http://www.sunlinkstreetcar.com/.
Adopt a Crosswalk Sign
Perhaps you've seen new signs at some crosswalks that remind motorists to yield to pedestrians. The signs can be placed at marked crosswalks on roadways with speed limits of 25 mph or less. Most of the signs are in the downtown area, but they can be placed on qualifying roadways throughout Tucson by special request. Do you know of a crosswalk that would benefit from a sign? Individuals, businesses, or organizations can "adopt" a crosswalk sign. By adopting the sign, the adopter agrees to pay $272.50 to have the sign built and placed at the crosswalk of their choice. For more information, please contact Diahn.Swartz@tucsonaz.gov or 837-6661. City of Tucson Bicycle & Pedestrian Program: https://www.tucsonaz.gov/bicycle
Trees for Tucson – Cool shade delivered to your door!
Continuing this February, order three trees for just $15 and be eligible for home delivery! Visit https://tucsoncleanandbeautiful.org/trees-for-tucson/ to place your order. Limit three trees per household. Trees are five gallon size and must be planted within 15 feet of the west, east, or south side of the home. Planting instructions are provided at time of delivery. Questions? Call 837-6835.
W3NA needs YOU!
With the Neighborhood Reinvestment Program having been voted down along with the County bond propositions, it’s quite clear that we, as neighbors, need to assume the initiative to build and enhance our neighborhoods and community. That being said, the Ward 3 Neighbors Alliance needs your help, especially if you have business, financial and/or legal experience and are willing to offer input, expertise and a little time to participate in their fiscal action team. The task is to help analyze, prioritize and determine those projects and ideas presented to W3NA for which the Alliance can be an effective partner or participant to help bring them to fruition. If you’d like to contribute to this W3NA undertaking, visit http://w3na.weebly.com/ for more information or to contact the Board of Directors.