July 27, 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 Council Prepares For Charter Amendment Election
At its regular work session meeting Monday, the Richardson City Council directed the City Attorney to prepare an ordinance to call for a charter amendment election in November. The Council’s action follows a report from the City Secretary’s Office, which verified the requisite number of qualified voters have signed a petition that calls for an election to change Richardson’s charter to provide for the direct election of the City’s mayor.
Currently, under the Richardson City Charter, a council member is appointed to the position of mayor by the council members. Under state law, the City Charter may be amended by initiative of the City Council adopting an ordinance calling an election on proposed amendments, or by petition, if a proper petition is submitted and signed by a number of qualified voters of the City equal to at least five percent of the number of qualified voters of the municipality, or 20,000, whichever number is smaller. To call the election, the petition was required to be signed by at least 2,499 qualified Richardson voters. A total of 4,556 signatures were submitted, and 3,051 were verified.
The City Council is expected to vote on the ordinance during its Monday, July 30 work session meeting.
The election will take place during the next available uniform election date, which will be Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012.
Click the link below to watch Monday’s City Council work session:
Record Number of Companies to Compete in 15th Annual Corporate Challenge
The Olympic-style Richardson Corporate Challenge will kick off its 15th year Aug. 17 with a record-setting 55 companies making up 51 teams.
Some of the largest companies in the Metroplex will take part in the Richardson Corporate Challenge, the only corporate competition of its kind in Texas. Participants include title sponsor Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas, as well as Southwest Airlines, Samsung, PepsiCo and Rockwell Collins. New companies involved this year include Ebby Halliday Family of Companies, The Beck Group, Baylor Health Care System and General Electric.
The program helps to encourage employee wellness, camaraderie and a sense of community. It has a charitable mission as well, with participants raising $172,000 last year for Special Olympics Texas, bringing the total raised over 14 years to more than $1.1 million.
Click the link below to watch Monday’s presentation to the City Council about Corporate Challenge:
City Plans to Expand Upon Baseball League and Tournament Growth
Since Keffler Ballpark at Breckinridge Park opened in 2010 and shade structures were added in 2011, league and tournament play has increased significantly in Richardson. Plans presented to the City Council on Monday would allow baseball participation to grow even more.
Spring Valley Athletic Association is planning to continue to expand its membership, the Home School Athletic Association has been able to host varsity and junior varsity tournaments, and Canyon Creek Christian Academy re-established its baseball program last year. The Dallas Parochial League and Richardson ISD’s fall baseball program also use Keffler Ballpark throughout the year.
While supporting the local associations is a priority, tournaments have also been able to use the fields. The baseball complex hosted nine tournaments in 2011, 14 tournaments have been played or are planned this year. Many of those have attracted teams that stay in Richardson hotels and bring tax revenue to the City.
Plans to use portable pitching mounds at the Huffhines Park softball fields will give the City a second four-field baseball complex, which would allow the City to attract state and national tournaments as early as next year.
Huffhines Softball Fields
Click the link below to watch Monday’s presentation to the City Council:
Certified Tax Roll Shows Property Value Growth
Property values in Richardson increased for the third time in the past five years, according to certified tax rolls submitted by the Dallas and Collin Central Appraisal Districts. The 3.4 percent increase to $10.08 billion was among the highest for large cities in the two counties.
The certified tax roll submitted by the Dallas Central Appraisal District shows an increase of approximately 0.7 percent in value, while the increase reported by the Collin Central Appraisal District totaled 8.4 percent. About 63 percent of Richardson’s property value is in Dallas County, with the remaining 37 percent in Collin County.
The City uses revenues from property taxes, combined with sales tax income, to provide the vast majority of funds needed to pay for municipal services, such as park maintenance, fire and police protection and road and sidewalk repairs.
The City is in the process of incorporating these results into the 2012-2013 Fiscal Year Budget documents, which will be filed next Friday.
Positive West Nile Virus Tests Result in Mosquito Spraying This Week
The Richardson Health Department sprayed several portions of Richardson this week due to a report of two positive human cases of West Nile virus from residents and positive West Nile virus test results from a mosquito monitoring station.
The sprayings occurred in portions of central and southeast and southwest Richardson. The Richardson Health Department schedules mosquito sprayings based on positive findings of West Nile virus in mosquito traps placed around the City (see map); or if a human case is confirmed. Once located, the area around the positive finding is targeted for spraying in an attempt to help limit the spread of the disease.
Spraying is one measure utilized to help limit exposure, but citizens should also remain vigilant in protecting themselves when going outside.
To protect from mosquito bites, people are asked to follow the Four D’s of protection:
Spraying to control the population of mosquitoes and the spread of the West Nile virus is a last resort, and is part of a comprehensive plan the Richardson Health Department follows to control the mosquito population. All areas of the City are continuously monitored, and further sprayings will be scheduled based on mosquito surveillance used to monitor the spread of the West Nile virus.
- 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.
Richardson schedules spraying events between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m. to limit exposure to people who may wish to avoid contact with the pesticide used to control mosquito populations. The City utilizes an ultra-low volume fogger that disperses pesticide at a rate of 6 oz. per minute, which is effective at impacting mosquito populations and is sensitive to the environment.
|The blue dots on the map indicate where the Richardson Health Department places mosquito monitoring traps.
Main Street/Central Expressway Corridor Study Survey and Questionnaire Online
Public input on the Main Street/Central Expressway Corridor study is continuing with an online survey and questionnaire. Both went online this week and will be available through Aug. 30.
The survey and questionnaire follow an open house held this month and are among several opportunities for the public to provide input on the future vision for the Main Street area and Central Expressway corridor.
Results of both the survey and the questionnaire will be provided at the next public meeting in September. Those who respond can also provide their contact information in order to receive further information about the project and upcoming events.
The Main Street/Central Expressway study area is approximately 415 acres, including the Central Expressway corridor from approximately 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.
Further opportunities for public input include a Facebook page, a community charrette scheduled for Sept. 19 and a third community involvement session planned for Nov. 8.
Click the link below to participate in the survey and questionnaire:
Click the link below to visit the Main Street/Central Expressway Facebook page:
Organization Plans Day of Service to Assist Richardson Homeowners
Several Richardson homeowners in need of assistance and the Richardson Family YMCA will receive help from more than 200 volunteers on Sept. 22, the first Pete Burks Day of Service. The project is being coordinated by Footwasher Ministries Inc., with assistance from the City’s Community Services Department.
Projects planned include painting, fence repair, landscaping maintenance and more. Pete Burks Day of Service is planned to become an annual event to honor an Army 2nd Lieutenant who died in Iraq in 2007. Lowe’s Home Improvement at Richardson Square is helping to provide materials for the project.
The event is the largest service project that Community Services has facilitated through the City’s Volunteer Assistance Program. Footwashers has been involved with the City’s Volunteer Assistance Program for nearly two years and was recognized for its service by the City Council this spring.
Click the link below for more information or ways to support the Pete Burks Day of Service:
Primary Election Runoff to be held Tuesday
The Republican and Democratic Party primary election runoff will take place Tuesday, July 31, for county, state and federal offices.
Voting will take place 7 a.m.-7 p.m. The Richardson Civic Center will not be an Election Day voting location.
For more information, contact the Dallas County Elections Department at 214-637-7937, the Collin County Elections Department at 972-547-1990, or the Richardson City Secretary at 972-744-4290.
Click the links below for more information about the July 31 primary runoff, including voting locations:
Dallas County Election Office
Collin County Election Office
Bubble Artist to Perform at Library Saturday
Bubble artist Linda Berman will perform two shows Saturday afternoon at the Richardson Library. The show includes hand-blown bubbles big and small, dancing bubbles, bouncing bubbles and foggy bubbles.
The free shows will take place 2-3 p.m. and 3:30-4:30 p.m. Tickets are required to attend the performance and will be available beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Children’s Department.
Richardson Community Band to hold Free Concert Sunday
The Richardson Community Band’s summer concert series will continue Sunday with “The Wild Wild West.” Families are invited to bring lawn chairs or blankets to the Civic Center lawn for an evening of music. The free concert will begin at 7 p.m.
Methodist Health System Recognized by National Healthcare Magazine
Modern Healthcare magazine has named Methodist Health System one of the “Fast 40 – Healthcare’s Hottest” companies nationwide. Methodist Health System was one of just four companies in Texas to be recognized.
Companies recognized are the fastest growing health care organizations that are headquartered in the United States, had at least $20 million in revenue in 2011 and have been in business for five years or more.
The 2012 program identifies the “Fast 40” companies in the following sectors: hospitals/hospital systems, physician group practices, payers/insurers and suppliers. A ranked list of winners will be announced and posted by Modern Healthcare on Sept. 24, and included in a published print supplement with the magazine, along with profiles of many of the honorees.
Click the link below to learn more about the program:
Altrusa Outstanding Women of Today…Builders of Tomorrow Nominations are Due Tuesday
Altrusa International, Inc. of Richardson is accepting nominations for its 2012 Outstanding Women of Today…Builders of Tomorrow Awards. The deadline to submit nominations is Tuesday.
The award honors women for their professional accomplishments and for making a difference for the future of women and providing leadership in their fields.
Click the link below for the nomination form:
Methodist Richardson Medical Center to Host Free Women’s Health Event Saturday, Aug. 11
Methodist Richardson Medical Center’s “Girl Talk” will focus on learning how to live healthfully as a modern woman. The free event will take place 9:30 a.m.-noon Saturday, Aug. 11 at the Eisemann Center.
Mayor Pro Tem Laura Maczka will emcee the event, which will feature informative talks from physician experts about women’s health issues as well as general wellness. Guests will also receive free health screenings for blood pressure, blood glucose, total cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides. (Health screenings are available to women ages 18 or older and require a 10-hour fast.)
The keynote speaker will be Dale Smith Thomas, who will speak about “Superwoman Syndrome” and share entertaining insights and lots of laughter. A dynamic and sought-after speaker, Thomas has made numerous TV appearances including on “Dr. Phil,” CMT and VH1.
Space is limited, so register by calling 972-4-DR-LINE or visit http://bit.ly/NyPdcj.
Richardson Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
This is Percy! He is a domestic short hair, neutered male about two years old. He came in as a stray in February and is up to date on all vaccinations. He is very friendly and good with other pets. Contact the Animal Shelter (972-744-4480) about Percy or other animals available for adoption.
Animal Shelter Facebook Page
City Council videos: http://bit.ly/LSHJzE
City Council agenda: http://bit.ly/QoOWF4
City Council meeting documents: http://bit.ly/OrSIQ2
Find Richardson Today on Facebook and Twitter.
Mayor Pro Tem