Park and recreation officials and community-group leaders discussed open-space issues in Norwalk, Conn., at a forum this week. Projects discussed included a bee and bird habitat corridor, expansion of the Norwalk River Valley Trail, and a possible land swap that would increase park space near the community college.
Foothills prairie grass and wildflowers are being planted in Founders Park in Rapid City, S.D., to help reduce stormwater runoff and attract pollinators. The plantings could also reduce mowing frequency.
Parks and recreation agencies need to regularly assess their compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, writes WT Group Accessibility Practice's John McGovern. He discusses trends affecting recreation programs, existing facilities and what attracts regulatory attention.
Ten fire department communications specialists have been told by the city of Spokane, Wash., that their positions will be eliminated July 1, but the city says the employees will be offered opportunities with the Spokane Regional Emergency Communications center. Several issues remain to be resolved regarding the consolidation, such as whether the city will integrate or continue independently serving the city's fire and police departments.
Steuben County, N.Y., manager Jack Wheeler and 9-1-1 director Dave Hopkins say they agree with the Federal Communications Commission, which asserts the state is endangering public safety through its misuse of phone fees. "We urge the Governor and State Legislature to reconsider their flawed policy of keeping the vast majority of public safety telephone surcharges, as noted by the FCC Commissioner," says Wheeler.
Muncie, Ind., says it will pay Delaware County its almost $300,000 share of emergency services operating costs, an amount that was owed in April but which the controller says went unpaid because he was waiting for a hard copy bill. Communication between the two entities is reported to have deteriorated amid disagreements regarding the fate of the joint center.
Nelson, New Zealand, Mayor Rachel Reese is asking city council members to officially declare a climate emergency and add plans for responding to climate change into the local strategic, annual and long-term plans. "We should be treating this as an emergency, and not as a one-off emergency response but as an ongoing effort that could take years or even decades," Reese says.
Durham County, N.C., manager Wendell Davis is proposing a 3.3% property tax increase as part of his plan to execute goals outlined in the county's strategic plan. The proposed budget includes $7 million for local schools, as well as raises for county staff and funding for 22 new positions.
City council members in Marlin, Texas, voted last week to hire Balch Springs ISD Police Department chief Cedric Davis for the post of city manager, filling a spot that has been vacant for the past two months. Davis previously ran as a Democratic candidate for the governorship of Texas.