Paul's Note: Friday, September 6th, 2019

Paul’s Note
Friday, September 6th, 2019
 
Paul’s Note
Pet of the Week
Ward 3 Neighborhood Association/Coalition Meetings
Ward 3 Events
City Wide Events
Did You Know?
 
Paul’s Note
 
HUD Grant to End Youth Homelessness
 
I was very pleased to see this week that the Tucson/Pima Collaboration to End Homelessness (TPCH) was awarded a $4.55 million HUD grant. The purpose of the grant is to help Tucson to end youth homelessness. The City’s Housing and Community Development Department is the lead agency for the grant and will partner closely with Our Family Services who currently operates the only youth shelter in Tucson.
 
More than 1,200 homeless youth have been served by Our Family Services and TPCH between 2017 and 2018. Our most recent Point In Time Count identified 79 homeless unaccompanied youth, 18 of whom were unsheltered—meaning they were not in a shelter or in transitional housing and instead living on the street.
 
It goes without saying that youth have special needs and homeless youth often face challenges at home which result in their being on the street. The Voices of Youth Count based at the University of Chicago finds:
 
29% of homeless youth report having substance use problems.
69% of homeless youth report mental health problems.
33% had once been part of the foster care system.
50% of homeless youth have been in the juvenile justice system, in jail or detention.
27% of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (LGBTQ) youth who are homeless reported exchanging sex for basic needs compared to 9% of non-LGBTQ youth who reported having to exchange sex for basic needs.
62% of LGBTQ youth report being physically harmed while experiencing homelessness while 47% of non-LGBTQ youth reported being physically harmed while homeless.
 
You’ve read before about my visit to the youth shelter operated by Our Family Services and how much of the work they do involves offering life skills to youth and working toward resolution of family disagreements where possible. You also likely recall that both the Ward 6 and Ward 3 offices are a “Safe Place,” meaning that any youth in crisis can come to our facility and be connected with Our Family Services’ shelter for runaway and homeless teenagers within 30 minutes.
 
Both of these programs are critical building blocks in our effort to end youth homelessness. In addition, the HUD grant will support TPCH to identify how best to expand services in collaboration with youth who have experienced homelessness as well as child welfare agencies, nonprofit organizations, schools, workforce programs, local businesses, and other community partners to create a comprehensive community plan to end youth homelessness in Tucson and throughout Pima County. I’m pleased that my office will also be participating in these planning sessions.
 
As some of you who work closely with my office may know, my staff and I are in the process of investigating what Tucson would need to do to end chronic homelessness for both youth and adults. While this will take significant effort, I believe the strides we’ve made in ending Veteran homelessness to date and our future learning from our efforts to end youth homelessness will best position us to take on such a bold, meaningful goal for our city.
 
CDC Vaping Warning/Tobacco 21 Stakeholder Meeting
 
By now you’ve all read in this newsletter about my efforts to get tobacco and nicotine products, including electronic cigarettes, out of middle and high schools, preventing many youth from becoming addicted to nicotine before they turn 21. Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put out a health advisory warning of severe pulmonary disease that has been linked to use of e-cigarettes. There have been hundreds of confirmed cases across the country and several deaths are under investigation. These are not products that we should be selling to high school students.
 
Last week, the Pima County Health Department hosted a stakeholder meeting. This week, the City of Tucson is hosting a mirror stakeholder meeting on Tuesdaym, September 10th to consider three policy changes:
 
  • Raise the minimum legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18-21 years old
  • Create a retail permit system for tobacco retailers in unincorporated Pima County
  • Amend language to the current smoking ordinance to include electronic nicotine delivery systems
 
Given the obvious health risks of smoking traditional cigarettes and the growing body of research around the risks of vaping, I think the right course of action is evident. If you have an opinion, you can join us:
 
Tobacco 21 Stakeholder Meeting
September 10, 2019
Tucson City Hall, 1st floor conference room
255 W Alameda St, Tucson
4:00 PM-5:00 PM
 
If you can’t attend on Tuesday but would like for the Pima County Board of Supervisors to hear your opinion, you can provide feedback through an easy online form at: www.pima.gov/health.
 
Anza Park
 
That’s right, the proper name is actually “Anza Park” and not “De Anza Park”—but that’s a newsletter item for another time.
 
My office along with Wards 1 and 6 have been working with the Parks and Recreation, Transportation, Housing and Community Development and Tucson Police Departments to shift the dynamics at Anza Park. We hear frequently from neighbors adjacent to the park about the challenges they face and we also know too that our parks do not substitute for meaningful services and, at some times, enforcement that many who are hanging out there all day, every day—including those experiencing homelessness and those who are just scoring drugs there—actually need to shift behavior. TPD has made a number of arrests related to drug sales at Anza Park—but we know that offering services and charging bad actors is not enough.
 

 
We had a great turnout last week at the Anza Park Stakeholder meeting hosted by Pima Community College.
 
In light of all of this, the City of Tucson hosted a session with residents last week to get feedback on what they want to see at the park. The thinking here is simple: if you do not have a public space that is open and welcoming to all residents it can become a significant strain on neighborhoods and the city as a whole. If we can change that and create a space where residents want to come, it will help alleviate some of that strain.
 
In order to help build a public space people feel welcome in, we asked neighbors about what types of amenities they would use at the park. Perhaps not surprisingly, the top contender was a dog park with court sports, ramadas and restrooms coming in close behind.
 
We heard from a number of residents who asked for more events at the park such as regular food truck sales and weekly concerts or movies. We are reviewing what we learned and will be coming back to residents in about a month with some clear ideas of how to move forward.
 
Of course, any new amenities will cost money and it will ultimately depend on residents, nearby businesses and partners like Pima Community College’s Downtown Campus to really take ownership of the park and commit to using it. That’s how we can maintain it as a welcoming and safe place for all. I’m cautiously optimistic that surrounding neighborhoods and area stakeholders can build some new opportunities for this public space.
 
Green Stormwater Infrastructure
 
Mayor and Council voted on Wednesday to create a Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) Fee and Fund. My motion to create the GSI Fee, amended by Council Member Romero, was approved unanimously. The GSI fee will be based on a rate of 13 cents per Ccf of water usage. Per Council Member Romero’s amendment, we’ll review the equitability of the fee structure after the first 12 months. The GSI Fee and Fund will go into effect in January 2020 and will sunset after three years unless extended by a vote of Mayor and Council.
 
The feedback we heard from constituents about the proposal was very positive. Tucsonans understand that all water is precious and that by harvesting more stormwater we have the ability to reduce flooding, secure future supplies of ground water and increase our urban tree canopy.
 
This new fund will not solve all of our flooding problems or address all of our urban tree canopy needs and we must continue to develop and expand efforts on these fronts. That said, the GSI Fee and Fund is a big step forward for our community. Thanks to all of you who weighed in to make it a better proposal and help it be realized.
 
-Paul D.
 
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Pet of the Week
 
Manx
 
September is National Happy, Healthy Cat Month. Training your cat and providing him or her toys for enriching activities are two ways you can ensure your cat is happy and healthy. You also want to make sure that you take your cat to the vet regularly, get her microchipped, and stay up to date on her vaccinations.
 

 
This is Manx. She is a 3 year old tortoiseshell Manx. She is spayed and current on all of her shots. Help Manx celebrate Happy, Healthy Cat Month by bringing her home with you! You can come down to the Humane Society of Southern Arizona to meet Manx at the HSSA Main Campus at 635 W Roger Rd Monday-Friday from 11 am-6 pm and Sundays 12-5 pm. Bring the whole family including your dogs if you have them to meet this mellow girl. For any questions and to find out more about Manx call the friendly staff and volunteers at 520-327-6088.
 
All Cat adoptions at HSSA include:
 
~Spay or neuter surgery
~Microchip identification with lifetime registration
~Internal and external parasite treatment
~Initial upper-respiratory/distemper vaccination
~Free visit to a veterinarian of your choice
~Rabies vaccination for cats 3 months of age & older
~Bag of Cat Food
 
See, HSSA makes sure that you are able to celebrate Happy, Healthy Cat Month from the get-go with Manx!
 
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Ward 3 Neighborhood Association/Coalition Meetings
 
Alvernon Grant Initiative
Tuesday
September 10th
6-7 pm
Emmanuel Church
1825 N Alvernon
 
Friends of Marty Birdman
Wednesday
September 11th
5:30-6:30 pm
Marty Birdman Center
2536 N Castro Ave
 
Miracle Manor
Wednesday
September 11th
6-7 pm
Good News Church
701 W Glenn St
 
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Ward 3 Events
 
Thrive in the 05 Business Forum
Monday
September 9th  
6-7:30 pm
Pima Community College Downtown Campus
Amethyst Room (CC 180)
1255 N Stone Ave
 

 
At this Thrive in the 05 Business Forum titled "Building on the Area's History,” the discussion will include the Oracle Road/Miracle Mile area’s rich and colorful history, and how building on the area’s past can enhance its identity and help ensure a dynamic future.
 
Contact Teresa Noon at  tmnoon@pima.edu or  520-206-7031 for questions or to request ADA accommodations.
Spanish Interpretation Provided / Interpretacion en español disponible by Pima Community College Translation & Interpretation Studies (TRS).
 
 
Free Nutrition and Gardening Workshop
Tuesday
September 17th
5:30-7 pm
Literacy Connects
200 E Yavapai Rd
 
Dinner will be provided and child care will be available. Enter the raffle while you’re there.
 

 
Amphi Story Circle
Saturday
September 28th
10 am-2 pm
Literacy Connects
200 E Yavapai Rd
 
Free lunch and childcare available.
 

 
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City Wide Events
 
Arts Foundation for Tucson General Operating Support Grant – Information Session & Workshop
Monday
September 9th
3:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Historic Brings Coworking, Large Conference Room
236 S Scott Ave
 
Do you have questions or need help understanding how to apply for the General Operating Support Grant, which provides unrestricted funding that gives grantees the rare opportunity to fund the day-to-day needs of a non-profit organization? Attend an information session and workshop where staff from the Arts Foundation for Tucson and Southern Arizona will walk through the process.
 
Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona HungerWalk 2019
Saturday
September 14th
Kino sports Complex
2500 E Ajo Way
 

 
Mark your calendars for this fun, family-friendly event. Help raise awareness of the issue of hunger in our community, and take action toward a vision of a healthy hunger free future for southern Arizona.
 
*New* this year, CFBSA will be hosting the largest food bag packing, where every walker will get a chance to pack one food bag as they walk through the warehouse. They need a lot of walkers to do that. Will you walk and help pack 1,200 food bags on Saturday, September 14th? If you are interested, you can register for the HungerWalk at www.communityfoodbank.org/hungerwalk. It’s a great way to share the Food Bank with friends and family and help raise funds for the cause.
 
 
Second Chance Tucson Job & Resource Fair
Thursday
September 19th
1-4 pm
Tucson Convention Center
260 S Church Ave
 

 
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Did You Know...?
 
Volunteers Needed For Tucson Homeless Connect Event October 4th
 
More than 300 people experiencing homelessness, including 100 estimated veterans, those living on the street, youth who are on their own, and families with children are expected at the Tucson Homeless Connect event on Friday, October 4th at 8:30 am-1 pm at Trinity Presbyterian Church, 400 E. University Blvd.
 
Local service providers, businesses, and volunteers will help the homeless and near-homeless get healthcare, apply for benefits, receive haircuts and receive medical screening, and get pet care. Homeless and near homeless Veterans will be able to apply for VA benefits and get help with jobs, housing, counseling and other needs. All will be served lunch.
 
Volunteers are needed to help with setup, hygiene kit assembly, registration, hospitality, security, scheduling, and more.
 
To volunteer or receive more information contact Patti or Larry at (520) 299-2900 or email tucsonhomelessconnect@gmail.com.
For more about the Tucson Homeless Connect event follow the link http://bit.ly/2dzTFYI.
 
Recycle Coach
 

 
The City of Tucson Environmental & General Services Department has made a FREE app available for your smart phone that will allow you to schedule notifications, view your trash and recycling schedule and verify if an item is eligible to go into the Blue Barrel. You can go to the link to download the app here.
 
Anza Park Survey
 
Give the City your input as they make plans  there is an online survey available through September 21st at www.tucsonaz.gov/anzapark where you can tell the City about what you see for the future of Anza Park as plans are made for improvements.
 
Eviction Prevention
 
The Arizona Department of Housing is providing targeted eviction prevention funds in Pima County, and Primavera is one of the locations where people can access the assistance.  The program has residential, income, and verification requirements, click here for eligibility. Please help us get the word out about this important service to Ward 3 neighbors! If you have any questions, please contact Emma Hockenberg at ehockenberg@primavera.org
 
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Council Member Paul Durham is on Social Media!
 
Ward 3 has Facebook and Twitter pages so you can keep up with our Council Member and stay in touch with what's happening in Tucson and around the Ward.
 
Follow us on Twitter: @CMPaul_Durham
 
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