June 22, 2012
Here is the latest edition of Week In Review - a series of weekly messages from the Mayor and City Council to help Richardson residents and businesses keep up to date on events at City Hall. A list of links for stories in this edition is available at the bottom of the page.
City Conducts Mosquito Control Spraying Due to West Nile
The Richardson Health Department sprayed the southwest portion of the City for mosquito control this week based on positive mosquito pool results and a reported human case of the West Nile virus in a Richardson resident who lives near Central Expressway and Belt Line Road.
The spray area spanned from Melrose Drive south to Spring Valley Road and from Coit Road east to Central Expressway. It was the first spraying event to occur this year in Richardson. All areas of the City will be continuously monitored throughout the rest of the mosquito season, and further sprayings will be scheduled based on mosquito surveillance used to monitor the spread of the West Nile virus.
Richardson is not alone in the noticed increase in mosquito populations and findings of West Nile in mosquitoes. Environmental conditions from last summer's drought, a mild winter and abundant spring rains have resulted in an increased population.
With increased mosquito populations comes an increased risk to being bitten by mosquitoes. To protect from bites, people are urged to follow the Four D’s of protection:
- DRAIN standing water around the home,
- Use insect repellent containing DEET,
- Avoid being outdoors at DUSK and DAWN when mosquitoes are most active,
- And DRESS to protect yourself with long sleeves and pants to reduce skin exposure.
The West Nile virus is caused by a bite from an infected mosquito that's already carrying the virus, but not all mosquitoes are capable of carrying or transmitting the disease. In North Texas, the risk of being bitten by an infected mosquito is greatest from July to October. Not everyone who gets bitten by an infected mosquito will get the virus, and it's rare for people to become very sick if they do develop symptoms from the disease.
Symptoms of West Nile virus vary depending upon the person who becomes infected. People who do develop symptoms usually suffer from mild "flu-like" illness. Rarely, symptoms may require medical care or hospitalization. The people who are most susceptible to the disease are the very young, the very old and those with weakened immune systems.
Click on the following links for more information about the West Nile virus:
City Council to Hold Public Hearing on District Boundary Realignment Monday
The City Council will hold a public hearing on the realignment of the City’s Council District boundaries on Monday, June 25. The Council was briefed on the recommendations from the Council District Boundary Commission at its June 11 meeting.
Federal regulations require that the population distribution among City Council districts be approximately equal and that district boundaries be nondiscriminatory. The City Charter requires that the City Council appoint a Commission every 10 years (after the U.S. Census is complete) to review the district boundaries and ensure population equality. Current district boundaries must be realigned because population growth in some areas of the City has led to an imbalance in the population distribution among districts.
On Jan. 30, the City Council appointed the City Plan Commission to serve as the Council District Boundary Commission. Over the course of seven meetings, including two public hearings, the Commission reviewed nine different options. Two options have been forwarded for City Council consideration.
New district boundaries must be approved by the City Council by ordinance no later than July 30, 2012.
Click the link below for detailed redistricting information:
Click the links below to watch the June 11 City Council briefing:
Former City Manager Bill Keffler Receives Regional Excellence Award
The North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) last week presented former Richardson City Manager Bill Keffler with the prestigious William J. Pitstick Regional Award for Excellence, in recognition of his career-long dedication to regional leadership. The award, presented during the NCTCOG’s annual General Assembly, is awarded annually to one outstanding individual in the 16-county North Central region who has demonstrated a longstanding commitment to regional excellence.
In 1992, the North Central Texas Council of Governments established the William J. Pitstick Excellence Award to honor the professional service of Bill Pitstick during his 26 years as NCTCOG’s Executive Director. The award recognizes an individual who has promoted good, strong, representative local government and a spirit of regionalism in solving multi-jurisdictional problems.
Nominees are judged on their leadership in the:
- Promotion of coordination and cooperation among citizens and local elected officials in a continuing effort to solve regional problems;
- Recognition that jurisdictional boundaries of local governments are not barriers to the solution of such problems.
Throughout his 35-year tenure with the City, including 17 years as City Manager, Keffler demonstrated an extraordinary capacity for leadership through his exceptional community and regional collaborations; regional leadership positions and mentoring efforts; and bold urban planning, economic development and community revitalization efforts that served as an example for other North Texas entities.
Keffler is the fourth person from Richardson to receive the prestigious William J. Pitstick Award. No other community or organization in the NCTCOG’s service area has been honored as many times. Other Pitstick Award winners from Richardson include: former Mayor Gary Slagel (2003), former Mayor Ray Noah (1998), and former City Manager Bob Hughey (1995).
Click the link to read complete press release: http://www.cor.net/index.aspx?recordid=275&page=149
Main Street/Central Expressway Enhancement/Redevelopment Study Begins
A study of potential enhancement and redevelopment opportunities in the Main Street/Central Expressway area is under way, beginning with an inventory of existing conditions, a real estate market analysis and an open house for public input. The City Council on Monday reviewed the project scope and timeline with City staff and the lead consultant on the project.
The study area is approximately 415 acres, including the Central Expressway corridor from the southern City limit to Arapaho Road, as well as the City’s historic downtown. Both areas were identified for further study in the 2009 Comprehensive Plan.
There will be several opportunities for public input through the study process, beginning with an open house scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 10, in the Civic Center Grand Hall.
The open house will be designed to obtain input from a wide variety of interested individuals, groups and stakeholders, including business owners, property owners and other participants. It will provide an opportunity for those in attendance to discuss and prioritize issues for the corridor, imagine their own preferred future for the area and participate in the identification of action items for advancing study goals. The open house will be structured around a series of topics at various stations in the meeting room. Participants will be able to visit any or all of the stations to provide comment. A presentation will be made at approximately 7:20 p.m., with more time for the open house afterwards.
A final report is expected to be presented to the City Council in December.
Click the links below to watch Monday’s City Council presentation:
City to Host Composting Seminar Saturday
The Richardson Public Services Department will host a composting seminar Saturday. Participants will learn the basics of backyard composting plus advanced tips and techniques from Mary Tynes, a nationally known expert on backyard composting and site editor of www.mastercomposter.com.
The seminar will take place 10 a.m.-noon at the Richardson Service Center, 1260 Columbia Dr. It is free to the public.
Day Camps and Pools are Open Throughout Summer Months
Richardson’s summer camps and pools provide families affordable recreation opportunities.
Camps provide children ages 5 to 15 fun indoor and outdoor activities, with a different theme for each weeklong session. Sessions run through Aug. 3 and cost $85-$130 per week, depending upon the camp.
Activities vary by age range and include field trips, outdoor activities, time at the pool, crafts, active games and much more.
Pool admission is $2 for residents and $4 for non-residents. Season passes are available for $30 for residents and $40 for non-residents.
City pools are:
- Canyon Creek, 600 Aspenwood Dr., 1-8 p.m. (Closed Mondays)
- Cottonwood Pool, 1321 W. Belt Line Rd., 1-8 p.m. Saturday & Sunday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday & Wednesday-Friday (Closed Tuesdays)
- Glenville Pool, 500 S. Glenville Dr., 1-8 p.m. (Closed Tuesdays)
- Terrace Pool, 300 N. Lois Lane, 1-8 p.m. Saturday & Sunday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday (Closed Mondays)
- Arapaho Pool is closed this summer for construction.
The pool season runs through Aug. 12. In addition, the Canyon Creek and Glenville pools will be open weekends after Aug. 12 through Labor Day weekend (Aug. 18-19 and 25-26, and Sept. 1-3).
Click the links below to register for summer camps and for information about Richardson aquatics:
Police Department Offers Home Security Watch Program
If you are going on vacation or an out of town business trip, the Richardson Police Department provides residents a Home Security Watch program to help prevent criminal opportunity while you are away.
As time permits, trained Volunteers in Police Service will check on homes for short periods of time. This program is NOT available to vacant homes or residences where family or friends might be temporarily visiting in your absence.
Contact the Crime Prevention Unit at 972-744-4955 if you have any questions about this program and click the link below to sign up for the program:
Eastside Richardson to Host Free Sock Hop Event Saturday
Eastside at Richardson will have a free family event this weekend. The Cruisin’ Quackin’ Sock Hop will take place 6-8 p.m. Saturday. It will benefit This Side Up! Family Center and will include a display of classic cars, a chance to adopt rubber ducks for This Side Up! Family Center’s upcoming Family Duck Race fundraiser, and an outdoor sock hop featuring ’50s music.
Eastside is located at 700 E. Campbell Rd., at the southeast corner of Campbell and Central Expressway.
Richardson Community Band to Perform Free Concert Sunday
The Richardson Community Band will continue its series of free summer concerts this weekend. The concert, “Music for a Summer Night,” will feature vocalist Stephanie Askew.
Families are invited to bring lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy an evening of music, which will take place at 7 p.m. Sunday at the Civic Center, 411 W. Arapaho Rd.
Laugh Mafia Will Perform June 29 at the Eisemann Center
Laugh Mafia will present “No I.V. Required” 8 p.m. Friday, June 29, at the Eisemann Center’s Bank of America Theatre. The comedy show will feature guest headliner Paul Varghese and will raise funds for the Children’s Cancer Fund.
Tickets are $15 and are available online at www.eisemanncenter.com or by calling the Eisemann Center Ticket Office at 972-744-4650. The Ticket Office is open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday-Saturday and one hour before performances.
TxDOT Launches New Online Map Application
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has launched a new online map application, Drive Texas™, that provides travelers with real-time traffic conditions, traffic and weather feeds, as well as links to other useful travel information.
Drive Texas™ displays statewide conditions affecting travel – construction, closures and accidents – as well as a live weather feed that allows drivers to check conditions along their route. Travelers can plot a course by entering their start and end cities to view highway conditions along their route, and they can also locate TxDOT Safety Rest Areas or Texas Travel Information Centers. In select cities, travelers can also view images from traffic cameras, messages posted on dynamic message signs and other detailed information.
Drive Texas™ can be found at www.DriveTexas.org or by clicking the “Highway Conditions” link at www.TxDOT.gov. A mobile-friendly version of the site is also available.
City Council videos: http://www.cor.net/index.aspx?page=752
City Council agenda: http://www.cor.net/index.aspx?page=1006
City Council meeting documents: http://www.cor.net/index.aspx?page=1329
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Mayor Pro Tem