President Donald Trump's plan to build a wall along the border with Mexico will harm marginalized communities and wildlife while fostering hostility, write Marta Segura of the Center for Biological Diversity and Robert Garcia of The City Project/Proyecto del Pueblo. "The wall scars spectacular public lands that belong to everyone and must be preserved for our children, and it slams the door shut on equal justice and human dignity," they write.
The Keep Our Parks Safe program in Lakewood, Ohio, has been awarded a $29,976 state grant to pay for extra security in the city's parks next summer. "We call it a special assignment parks car where we put one or two officers on overtime to give additional attention," said Capt. Edward Hassing of the city police department.
More than 2,100 acres of ranch land in Utah's Summit County has been secured through a conservation easement by the Summit Land Conservancy. The agreement will keep the family ranching operation going while protecting sage grouse habitat.
A proposal being considered by the Brecksville, Ohio, city council would have the city's new emergency dispatch center join Chagrin Valley Dispatch, which already serves more than a dozen local communities. Chagrin Valley Dispatch would aim to hire current dispatchers from Brecksville, Broadview Heights and Independence for the new center.
The county commission in Saline County, Kan., voted to buy software to improve its 9-1-1 system, but Emergency Management Director Hannah Stambaugh said the radio equipment may also require an upgrade, which could cost millions. A needs assessment of the radio system will begin in early 2018, she said.
"Primary" subscribers of FirstNet, including 9-1-1 personnel, police officers and firefighters, now have preemptive access to AT&T's network -- a feature AT&T had promised by year-end. The capability ensures they have priority access to the cell sector even when it is saturated with consumers.
As firefighters in California battle intense wildfires, departments in San Diego and Los Angeles are leasing Super Scooper aircraft to aid their teams. The amphibious aircraft can collect as much as 1,600 gallons of water from a body of water in 12 seconds and drop it on fires, flying as fast as 233 miles per hour.
The loss of property tax revenue from homes destroyed by wildfires and $10 million in spending on overtime and supplies as the county dealt with the crisis will leave Sonoma County, Calif., facing a $21 million budget gap at the end of this fiscal year. Supervisor Shirlee Zane says the county has some reserves to help offset the shortfall, but warns there will still be financial challenges.
Commissioners in Johnson County, Kan., have named deputy county manager Penny Postoak Ferguson as interim county manager after a decision not to renew the contract of current manager, Hannes Zacharias.