Nov. 16, 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.
Gobble Hobble This Weekend
The seventh annual Gobble Hobble 5K will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, at Galatyn Plaza. The 3.1-mile race will benefit The Counseling Place, a nonprofit victims’ assistance organization that provides free or low-cost advocacy for victims, youth programs and counseling services for those in need.
The event also includes a 1-mile Family Fun Run/Walk at 8:30 a.m. and a Kid Zone that includes bounce houses, a climbing wall, balloon artist and more.
Register online at www.gobblehobble.com. Registration is available on race day.
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Screening Tonight
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is giving the Richardson community a preview of what’s to come next spring with a free movie screening tonight at the site of its first Metroplex location.
The screening of “The Burbs” will take place after 7 p.m., but beginning at 5 p.m. there will be food trucks and craft beer from North Texas, as well as the unique entertainment Alamo is known for.
The event is being called “BYOC”—bring your own chair. It will take place at the Heights Shopping Center, at the southwest corner of Belt Line Road and Central Expressway. Visitors are encouraged to wear robes and pajamas for a PJ fashion show, and there will be a sardine eating contest and other over-the-top events.
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, based in Austin, will open in Richardson in May 2013. City, community and business leaders celebrated the beginning of construction last month with a ceremonial groundbreaking at the site.
Click here to see details about the event on the Alamo Drafthouse DFW Facebook page: http://on.fb.me/SsHXwe
Council Approves RFID System for Library
The City Council Monday approved the purchase and installation of a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) system at the Richardson Public Library. The new system is part of the 2010 Bond Program and will allow patrons to self-checkout by using tags on each item to track and sort them as they are processed.
The new system includes three self-service check-out kiosks and four staffed check-out stations that can also function as self-service stations. They will more than double the current number of available check-out stations, which is expected to reduce lines and wait times.
Library officials expect retagging of all Library materials to take four to six weeks. Self-service check-out kiosks and updated staffed check-out stations are expected to be in place in January, with an automated materials handling system in place by April or May.
Watch City Council work session discussion about the system at http://bit.ly/Qo6wic.
City Earns Financial Transparency Award
For the third year in a row, the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts has named Richardson as a Gold member in the State Comptroller’s Leadership Circle Awards. The award recognizes Richardson for its efforts to make finances open and accessible.
The Gold Leadership Circle Award, the Comptroller's highest ranking, is reserved for local governments “that are striving to meet a high standard for financial transparency online,” according to the Comptroller’s website, at www.window.state.tx.us/comptrol/checkup/leadership.php.
The City’s Financial Transparency website went online Dec. 1, 2010, and provides the ability to sort through a variety of municipal financial documents. Of special note, the City Council wanted to provide residents access to the City’s check register. The register makes available information on all payments issued by the City. It shows how much money is being paid for an assortment of goods and services by each department.
The website also provides access to City employee salaries, an online form to facilitate open records requests and a program enabling convenient tracking of projects included in the 2010 Bond Program. The City’s financial transparency website is at http://www.cor.net/index.aspx?page=125.
Richardson Named Top 10 Digital City Government
The City of Richardson has been named a top 10 digital city government by e.Republic’s Center for Digital Government and the Digital Communities Program in the 12th annual Digital Cities Survey, released Thursday. Richardson was the only Texas municipality recognized in the top 10 in the 75,000–124,999 population category.
The survey criteria focused on results achieved by cities, via the use of technology, in operating efficiencies and realizing strategic objectives despite current fiscal constraints. The cities ranked in the survey had solutions to questions such as how the city has dealt with the economic downturn.
The survey also asked the cities how they handle technology challenges such as keeping up with use of mobile devices for government business, social media technology and management, data safety as well as usability and telework and issues such as code changes.
The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. The Center is a division of e.Republic, a national publishing, events and research company. The survey was open to all U.S. cities with a population of 30,000 or more.
Learn more at www.digitalcommunities.com.
Thanksgiving Closings and Recycle Pick Up Schedule
City Hall/Civic Center and Municipal Court will close Nov. 22-23 for the Thanksgiving holiday and reopen at 8 a.m. Monday, Nov. 26. The Richardson Public Library and Animal Shelter will close Nov. 22-23 and reopen for regular hours Nov. 24. Recreation Centers, the Tennis Center and Senior Center will close Nov. 22 and reopen Nov. 23.
The City will not collect solid waste Nov. 22-23. Recycled materials normally picked up on Thursdays will be collected Wednesday, Nov. 21, and material normally picked up on Fridays will be collected on Saturday, Nov. 24.
Christmas Parade Registration Deadline is Nov. 21
Wednesday at 5 p.m. is the deadline to register for the 41st annual Christmas Parade, benefiting The NETWORK of Community Ministries. This year’s theme is Reindeer Games, and groups of all ages and interests are encouraged to participate. The entry fee is a donation of a new, unwrapped toy(s) or monetary gift for NETWORK.
The parade will begin at 9 a.m. Dec. 1 and travel north from Cherrywood Drive along Coit Road to J.J. Pearce High School. Former Richardson City Manager Bill Keffler and his wife, Chrissie, are the grand marshals.
Awards for the best entries will be presented at 5 p.m. Dec. 1, prior to the City’s Annual Christmas Tree Lighting and opening of Santa’s Village.
Download a parade registration form at http://bit.ly/TDcAhP. For more information, contact Parade Chairperson Barbara Cottone at email@example.com or call Melanie Sprott at 972-744-4310.
Senior Thanksgiving Luncheon at Civic Center
Richardson senior citizens are invited to a Thanksgiving Luncheon from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 20 at the Civic Center, 411 W. Arapaho Rd. Lunch will include turkey with all of the traditional Thanksgiving side dishes.
Entertainer Dave Tanner will provide dinner music and a program. Lunch costs $8.50. Tickets are available at the Richardson Senior Center, 820 W. Arapaho Rd. Call 972-744-7800 for more information.
RCAS Art Demonstration at Library
Dr. Jane Cross will present an interactive demonstration of easy drawing techniques at the Richardson Civic Art Society meeting at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 20, in the Richardson Public Library’s Basement Program Room. Cross teaches for SMU’s Informal Courses and the Dallas Parks and Recreation Department.
RCAS meets at the Library the third Tuesday of every month, and meetings are open to the public. The organization is supported in part by the City of Richardson through the Arts Commission.
PSO 30th Anniversary Concert at Eisemann Center
The Plano Symphony Orchestra will perform a show in honor of its 30th anniversary at 8:15 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17 at the Eisemann Center. The concert will feature Max Pollak performing Morton Gould’s Tap Dance Concerto and Metropolitan Opera star tenor James Valenti.
A 30th anniversary reception will follow the show in the Eisemann Center lobby. Tickets cost $9 to $75 and may be purchased at www.eisemanncenter.com or by calling 972-744-4650. For more information, visit www.planosymphony.org.
"The Stinky Cheese Man" Performance Cancelled
The Brad Simon Organization, Inc. of New York, NY has informed Eisemann Center management that the Griffin Theatre Company is unable to perform the Eisemann Center Presents Family Theatre Series production of "The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales" scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 18, because of injuries suffered by key cast members.
All ticketholders are being notified by e-mail and telephone of the cancellation and given all of the options available to them, including a full refund of their ticket price and service fees. Ticket Office hours are 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and one hour before performances.
Domino Domination Food Drive at Library
The Richardson Public Library’s Teen Advisory Board is collecting donations for NETWORK of Community Ministries and the Richardson Animal Shelter from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Domino Domination Food and Pet Food Drive in the Library’s Basement Program Room. For each item donated, a domino will be added to the domino train, which will be knocked down at 5 p.m. Saturday.
Some of the most-needed items are canned meats, rice, soup, beans, pasta, canned vegetables, shampoo, Purina or Pedigree dog and cat food, deodorant, soap, diapers and new or gently used coats. Monetary donations and pet store gift cards will also be accepted.
MRMC Men’s Health Tune-Up is Saturday
Methodist Richardson Medical Center will host a free Men’s Health Tune-Up from 9:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, Nov. 17. The event features health screenings, men’s health discussions led by physicians, breakfast and giveaways.
Space is limited. Register by calling 972-437-5463 or by visiting www.methodisthealthsystem.org/tuneup12.
Thanksgiving DART Schedule
Many DART services will be unavailable or will operate on a limited schedule on Nov. 22-23. DART buses and light rail trains will operate on a Sunday schedule on Thanksgiving Day and on a Saturday schedule on Friday, Nov. 23.
The Paratransit Scheduling Center will be closed Nov. 22-23, and customers may call 214-515-7272 on Nov. 21 to schedule service for Nov. 22-27. DART’s Customer Information Center will be closed Nov. 22 but will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday by calling 214-979-1111. For more information, visit www.dart.org.
Texas Social Security Offices' Hours Change
Texas Social Security offices will be open to the public from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays beginning Nov. 19. Beginning Jan. 2, 2013, they will close at noon on Wednesdays. All offices will be closed to the public Nov. 22-23.
The reduced hours are in response to funding cuts from the federal government that eliminate overtime pay for employees, who will continue to work regular hours.
Many Social Security services may be completed online, such as signing up for direct deposit, address changes and replacing a Medicare card. For more information, visit www.socialsecurity.gov or call 800-772-1213.
Richardson Animal Shelter Earns Statewide Recognition
The City of Richardson’s Animal Shelter received the prestigious recognition of Humane Educator of the Year at the Texas Animal Control Association’s (TACA) 38th Annual Conference this past week in Houston. Richardson has earned this recognition three times in the past for the Shelter’s outstanding community involvement and education activities.
The Humane Educator Award is given every year by TACA, a statewide association committed to the advancement of all animal control and animal welfare professionals through education, leadership and advocacy. The award recognizes outstanding agencies and people in the animal care and control profession who promote humane education to the children and adults in their own community or in the state.
Earlier this year, the Shelter made a proactive goal to increase its digital outreach by launching a Facebook page, which has helped connect animals in need with other rescue groups and foster homes. The Shelter hosts an extensive number of events each year, such as school visits and City Wide Pet Day, and with the implementation and growth of the Facebook page, the events have received more attention and increased attendance.
Richardson Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
Brothers Harry and William have been at the Shelter since August and have pretty much grown up there. These guys are so sweet, playful and love one another. We would love to see them adopted together. They are about 8-9 months old now, have not yet been neutered, and are up to date on all their vaccinations. Contact the Animal Shelter (972-744-4480) about Harry and William or other animals available for adoption.
For information about other animals available for adoption, visit the Animal Shelter’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/RichardsonAnimalShelter.
City Council videos: http://bit.ly/LSHJzE
City Council agenda: http://bit.ly/QoOWF4
City Council meeting documents: http://bit.ly/OrSIQ2
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