Karin's Note: Friday, November 8, 2013

Karin's Note: Friday, November 8, 2013

-Ward 3 Events
-Upcoming Area Neighborhood and Coalition Meeting(s)
-Citywide Events
-Did You Know?


Dear Tucsonans,

I am grateful for the chance to continue serving our great community on the City Council. The margins of support* earned by my colleagues Steve Kozachik, Richard Fimbres and me as well as voters’ strong approval of the requested Expenditure Cap Adjustment and General Plan all affirm this Mayor and Council’s vision for and work toward the betterment of our city.  We’ve made notable progress to improve our quality of life, expand job opportunities, protect our natural resources, and honor the rich history and cultural diversity of Tucson. Thousands of you contribute to those efforts and in countless ways. Thank you for continuing to care for one another and this special place we all love. We have much to celebrate and to look forward to together.


Thanks to Councilmember Cunningham and State Representative Ethan Orr for identifying a new funding source for our Van Tran service. They were correct in advocating that we pursue state reimbursements for medical and work-related trips provided to certain disabled riders. The result should be up to $500,000 in added transit funding annually. Mayor and Council directed staff to finalize the application and to continue researching other state and federal programs that  could help to cover transportation costs for specific populations.

Cell Towers

Mayor and Council directed staff to work with the community and our Planning Commission to review and recommend revisions to our current ordinance regulating the placement and dimensions of cell towers. Best practices from other cities will be included in the analysis. Several recent cases have highlighted the need for independent, third party data to help guide our local decisions. We’ve been frustrated by an industry-driven process advocating loosely defined “optimal sites” or “best available sites” rather than having a consistent and objective set of variables upon which to base our decisions. Cleaning this up will offer industry players a level playing field in-keeping with Federal Communications Commission guidelines while keeping negative community impacts in check.  If you have an interest in working on the staff/advisory group please contact Ernie Duarte at Development Services at 837-4899. I’ll keep you posted as further public discussion is scheduled through the Planning Commission and Mayor and Council.

Golf Enterprise

After eighteen months of work led by Councilmember Romero, Mayor and Council provided further direction to balance the true expenses and revenues of our Golf Enterprise (we have made it clear that we cannot afford and will not subsidize Golf with money from the General Fund). Staff will proceed to negotiate a management contract with a private entity based upon a recently completed, competitive bid process. We also directed our finance staff to rectify problems in the bookkeeping of Golf so we have a complete and clear accounting of the assets and liabilities of the enterprise moving forward. All five of the city’s golf courses will be included under the new management contract, meaning we will not sell or alter the use of existing facilities in the foreseeable future. Any change to that direction will require explicit action by Mayor and Council. I applaud Councilmember Romero and our Citizens’ Independent Audit and Performance Commission for highlighting the financial problems occurring in the Golf program and guiding us toward resolution to protect the city’s General Fund resources.

Next Week

The City Manager will provide us with an initial report on FY 2013 fund balances.  We will also be discussing the full impact of SB1070 and evaluating options for reducing the harm we knew would result from heightened TPD involvement in immigration enforcement.  Additionally, as part of that conversation I asked for more information on TPD’s protocols for handling U-Visa Affidavits submitted by victims/witnesses who cooperate in the investigation of a crime.  

Thank you and Farewell to Cheryl

Cheryl Rodgers, as Aide in my office for the past several years is in the process of moving to Phoenix with her family.  All of us will miss working with her and appreciate her dedication to serving the residents of Ward 3.  During this transition, feel free to reach out to any of my other Ward 3 staff with your issues, and please join us in sending good wishes Cheryl’s way. 
I hope to see you at the Veteran’s Parade downtown on Monday (see details below).



*the final tally will be released by the City Clerk next week; several thousand ballots have not yet been tabulated but will not affect the ultimate outcome of the election.

Note: The Ward 3 Council Office will be closed on Monday, November 11 in observance of Veteran’s Day.

Ward 3 Events

-Green Redevelopment and the Rise of 2030 Districts – Monday, November 11. Doors open at 5:30 p.m., speakers at 6:00 p.m. Tucson Association of Realtors Conference Room, 2445 N. Tucson Boulevard. Sustainable Tucson invites you to come and hear speakers Peter Dobrovolny, an architect planner and City of Seattle Liaison to the Seattle 2030 District and Robert Bulechek, Tucson building science and energy-efficiency expert. Discussions will focus on the 2030 Districts formed in the United States to meet the energy, water and vehicle emissions targets called for by Architecture 2030 Challenge for Planning.

-Tucson Clean and Beautiful Workshop – Tuesday, November 19 from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Prince Elementary School, 125 E. Prince Road. Join the Amphi Community Action Group to learn how you can get trees for your home. Whether you are renting or owning, there are options for everyone. Free and open to the public. RSVP to milini@mygoodneighbor.org or (520) 512-5740.


Upcoming Neighborhood and Coalition Meeting(s):

-Feldman’s NA –Thursday, November 7 at 7:00 p.m. St. Luke’s Home, 615 E. Adams

-The Oracle Project Steering Committee (TOPS) – Tuesday, November 12 at 5:30 p.m. TPD   Westside Substation, 1310 W. Miracle Mile

-Campus Community Relations Committee (CCRC) – Tuesday, November 12 at 6:00 p.m. U of A Student Union

-Alvernon/Grant Initiative (AGI/TNBC) – Tuesday, November 12 at 6:30 p.m. Emerge! 2425 N. Haskell

-Friends of Mansfield Park – Wednesday, November 13 at 6:30 p.m. Parkside Terrace Apartments, 2150 N. 4th Avenue

Citywide Events

-Pima Council On Aging Art Auction – Friday, November 8 at 6:00 p.m. People Creating Original Art. Armory Park Senior Center, 220 S. 5th Avenue. Fundraiser to benefit PCOA. Live and silent auctions, entertainment, light refreshments. More info: 790-0504

-Open Studio Tour- Saturday and Sunday, November 9 and 10 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tucson Pima Arts Council invites you to their 2013 showcase with 224 artists throughout Pima County. You’ll discover why Southern Arizona is renowned for its artistic vitality. More info and maps: www.TucsonPimaArtsCouncil.org or (520)624-0595.

-94th Annual Veterans Day Parade – Monday, November 11 at 10:30 a.m. Parade is Downtown Tucson starting at Pennington and Alameda. For more information: www.tucsonveteransdayparade.org

-8th Annual Family Festival in the Park – Saturday, November 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Reid Park (22nd and Country Club). The City of Tucson Parks and Recreation Department invites you to bring the entire family to enjoy a day of fun-filled free outdoor activities. Free admission to the Reid Park Zoo and rides on the Zoo Express train, golf lessons on Randolph Golf Course Driving Range, entertainment, demonstrations, games, arts and crafts and face painting. The event is free. Parks and Rec are asking for donations of canned food for the   Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.

Did You Know...?

…that it’s Homecoming Weekend for University of Arizona alumni? The festivities start with a Bear Down Friday Pep Rally on Friday, November 8 at 5:00 p.m. at Main Gate Square. On Saturday, November 9, former U.S. Rep Gabrielle Giffords and her husband Mark Kelly will be the grand marshals of the homecoming parade that begins at 4:15 p.m.  at First Street and Cherry Avenue, continuing down University. The “Wildcat Walk” kicks off at 6:00 p.m. followed by the football game against UCLA at 8:00 p.m. Go Cats!

…that there's still time to register for the December mini-session of classes for all ages through Tucson Parks & Rec.  Learn to make a holiday ornament with your 4-year-old, sculpt a portrait in clay, play def, tar, dumbek or finger cymbals (Mid-Eastern Percussion for Dancers). See descriptions of many classes at https://www.tucsonaz.gov/parks and register at ezeereg.com by Nov. 24.  The Spring 2014 issue of the Program Guide and Class Catalog will be available on Tuesday, Nov. 12. Information: 791-4877.