Good morning - I hope everyone had a great week. I thought Spring was here until this morning when it was snowing while I had the morning cup of coffee. This week is looking up and hopefully it's for good this time.
We will have a meeting this Tuesday beginning at 6 in the caucus room followed by the formal meeting at 7 in the court room.
There isn't too much on the agenda this week so rather than type it out, I'm going to attach it to this post and you can read the agenda for your self.
We are beginning to enter budget season. I'm hoping to be as transparent as possible with the whole process and bring our numbers under control. It worries me that in order to have a 0% increase in taxes we would have to cut so many of our workers and services. We enjoy so many great services here in the city that if any of them were cut, I know that there would be some pretty significant outrage from our residents. To me, it is worth a small increase to have fire, police, DPW and recreation departments adequately staffed and able to provide what we've become accustomed to in our city in regards to service. As an example - my neighbor had a grease fire this past week and (I'm estimating) the response time from call out to arrival was under 3 minutes, the whole incident took under a half hour and the resident had little damage to the house. This doesn't happen by mistake, this is every time there is an incident. You don't realize how valuable this is until you need it yourself.
As many of you know I am the House coordinator for Tonawanda Soccer Club as well. This year, we have seen a record number of kids who want to play soccer for our city. Traditionally, we play at Riverview for the 4-6 and 7-9 year olds. With approximately 150 kids playing at just these two levels we are quickly outgrowing our space. I have some ideas floating around that could take care of a couple of issues in our city and I'm hoping to discuss them at the meeting this week. What I'd like to see happen is similar to what West Seneca did with their soccer complex - Have the city lease or deed land to the club so that we may hold large tournaments and events that would help to pay back the city as well as make money for the various athletic clubs in the city. I'm talking combining space for Football, Soccer, Softball, etc. into one place - allowing concession stands, etc. to assist each club with this endeavor. I know this has been talked about before but this would have no outside builder or developer involved (maybe sponsor!), for the most part it would be 'in house' development. We shall see where this idea goes.
Another place that I see money being saved is with the paper use that is currently going on in city business. We spend roughly 25K in paper (as per our last budget line). With a little investment in technology and training I believe that in one year of going "paper-less" we could be both environmentally and fiscally more conscious.
There are many more cost saving ideas that will be brought up during budget season and I welcome any ideas the community may have. Please feel free to get in touch and we can chat!
Seeing the lawn cutting season right around the corner, I thought the picture below was great. And true. Right guys?
Many updates this week!
Happy Sunday! Isn't this Spring weather awesome? I'm guessing that next week Wednesday, everyone will be quickly putting on the Air Conditioning for the first time.
It was another busy week in the COT, and we have many very exciting projects coming down the lane that will start making big differences in the city.
I had the pleasure of attending the Wines on the Water event on Friday night at the Pavilion. It was the first time that I've been there for an official event and was quite impressed with the venue. Currently, the Council is considering a bond issue for some of the repairs that are needed down there. One of the issues that stood out to me as we were enjoying the event was the decibel level inside (maybe I was paying more attention to the noise as putting in acoustic baffles has been discussed). As we were sitting chatting (yelling) It was suggested that maybe I could reach out to the local colleges to see if they could make the dampening of the sound a project for one of their courses....I always like to think of the locality first and went ahead and reached out to the Science, STEAM, Music, Art, and Home Ec. departments in the Tonawanda High School. Why not have the kids do some experimenting with sound, design, form, acoustics, etc. and see what they can come up with to solve a problem in our own community. Hopefully, it will be a project that will benefit everyone.
Second, on Saturday morning, I attended the nomination event for Robin Schimminger at the Legion. I have to admit strolling down on Main St on a Saturday morning brought back some great memories from when I was a kid and my mother had a store front (The Needle's Eye) on the main portion of the block. It is such a fantastic area, with so much potential. I'm hoping that with the Hub, the Farmers Market, the established businesses, and the future plans for the area bring it back to what it once was.
Our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday - informal at 6 formal at 7. As you can see from the attached agenda, we are voting on many bond issues at this meeting.
I hope to see you at the meeting. If you have any questions or issues, please give me a ring.
Good Morning! I hope you all are well. Please excuse the simpleness of this update as there are many things to discuss so I figured it would be an easier read in list form!
City Business and goings on:
Check back often to see what's going on as I walk the trail!