March 16 , 2007 edition of:

Community Update
A Report on the Activities of Alachua County Government

 

This Issues Features:

Commissioner Long to Speak
What’s on Alachua County Talks?
Community Update TV Debut
NW Area Community Meeting
CHOICES Program is Out & About
County Meeting Reminder
Take Charge of Your Diabetes
Purchasing Canned Food Drive
Annual Youth Fair and Livestock
Maddie’s Pet Rescue Adopt-a-thon
Commission Meeting Highlights
Let’s All Get Involved - Alachua County Advisory Boards

 

Commissioner Long to Speak

Commissioner Rodney J. Long will be speaking to 90 co-ed 4th grade students on March 21, 2007 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at Duval Elementary School, located at 2106 NE 8th Ave., Gainesville. Pastor Willy King will be his guest.

In speaking of the event Commissioner Long said, “I was disadvantaged and lived in poverty. I return to schools that disadvantaged students attend to motivate them, so that they see that they can break the cycle of poverty and be successful.”

For more information, contact Angie Terrell at (352) 955-6703

 

On Saturday, March 24, Gainesville High School will be hosting the Alachua County Track and Field Meet at the University of Florida Track. Before the start of the running finals, slated for 5 p.m., Alachua County Commissioner Rodney J. Long will be acknowledged for his years of service to the Alachua County Track Community.

Commissioner Long recently retired from his track duties. He will be recognized for his past service as a volunteer, coach, official, and mentor to the youth of Alachua County.

 

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What’s on Alachua County Talks?

Tune into Alachua County Talks on Community 12 Your Local Government Channel

County Engineer Dave Cerlanek talks about County road improvements.

Alachua County Fire Rescue’s DJ Ferguson discusses special recruitment for Fire Rescue.

To view show times click here: http://www.alachuacounty.us/government/depts/comm/schedule.aspx

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Community Update TV Debut

Alachua County’s news magazine television program, Community Update, debuts Friday, March 23 at 8 p.m. on Community 12. The new show is a fast-paced and informative look at life in Alachua County. The first installment includes a look at County Capital Improvements projects for the coming year, the ongoing success story of the Alachua County Animal Shelter, County Commission highlights, Waste Watcher tips, and a look back at the life of longtime County resident and philanthropist Laura Carmichael.

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NW Area Community Meeting

There will be a community meeting for the Rutledge area on Monday, March 26, at 6:30 p.m. at the First Church of the Nazarene, 5020 NW 23rd Avenue. The boundaries of the area are NW 39th Avenue to the north, NW 23rd Avenue to the south, NW 43rd Street to the east, and NW 83rd Street to the west.

This area was selected by the County commission as the pilot area for Community and Neighborhood Planning Program.

The meeting agenda will include a draft report of community needs and issues identified by residents and discussed in workgroups over the past ten months as part of the Community and Neighborhood Planning Program. The Comprehensive Plan requires the Community and Neighborhood Planning program to prepare geographically focused action plans throughout the unincorporated area of the County. The plans are intended to address the specific needs and circumstances of a particular area consistent with the goals of the Comprehensive Plan. The issues identified as concerns in the Rutledge area during the community planning process and included in the draft report are (1) Natural Areas, Recreation and Open Space; (2) Paved/Unpaved Roads; (3) Development Density & Central Utilities; and (4) Sidewalks and Bike Paths.

For more information, please contact Kathleen Pagan, Senior Planner, at the Alachua Co. Department of Growth Management, (352) 374-5249, kpagan@alachuacounty.us, or see the report on the website at http://growth-management.alachua.fl.us.

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CHOICES Program is Out & About

The Outreach Program Manager for CHOICES Health Services, Marie Small, and Alachua County Social Services Director Candie Nixon recently participated in the seventh Annual Family Empowerment Health Fair, where they passed out information on CHOICES to attendees. This year’s theme was “Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies.

On April 15, 2007, CHOICES will have a booth at the Alachua Spring Festival presented by the Alachua Business League. The event is from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. It takes place on Historic Main Street in downtown Alachua.

If you would like to schedule a CHOICES presentation for your church, business, or community event, please contact CHOICES Program Manager Marie Small at (352) 264-6739. For more CHOICES information, go to http://www.acchoices.com.

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County Meeting Reminder

Springhills Public Hearing

 

NW (Rutledge) Area Community Meeting

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Take Charge of Your Diabetes

The Alachua County Extension Office is now offering an educational program to help adults with type 2 diabetes control their blood sugar to feel better and reduce risk of health complications. The program will include eight classes taught by a team of qualified educators and health professionals, and a personal consult with a registered dietitian. Health assessments (height, weight, and blood pressure measurements) are included. Classes will run from March 27 to May 15, 2007 and will be held from 2:30 4:30 pm each session. Classes will be held at the Alachua County Extension Office, 2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville.

We are now recruiting participants for this program. If you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, are at least 21 years old, and are interested in being a part of this program, please call the extension office at 352-955-2402 by March 21, 2007. The $75 program fee includes the educational classes, nutrition consultation, program materials, and health assessments.

CLASS SIZE IS LIMITED!

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Purchasing Canned Food Drive

The Alachua County Purchasing Department and the North Central Florida Chapter of the National Institute for Governmental Purchasing (NCFC-NIGP) will be collecting canned goods and non-perishable food items for donation to Bread of the Mighty Food Bank. Drop boxes will be placed throughout County buildings, and will accept donations March 14 - April 14.

The Bread of the Mighty Food Bank is a non-profit organization in Gainesville that coordinates the acquisition and distribution of food and basic essentials to non-profit programs that provide for the needy.

For more information, citizens can contact the Alachua County Purchasing Department at (352) 374-5202.

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Annual Youth Fair and Livestock

On Sunday, March 11, 2007 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., a special Family Fun Day is scheduled. This Fun Day will be held at the Alachua County Fairgrounds. There will be exhibits, arts and crafts, animals and a dog show. You will be able to vote for your favorite muffin, watch a chick hatch or watch a prize steer strut around the ring with its young owner. There will be tour guides, free childrens activities, door prizes and more.

Contact Lorraine S. Williams, Alachua County 4-H Program Coordinator or Cindy Sanders, Livestock Agent at (352) 955-2402 for more information, or visit http://alachua.ifas.ufl.edu.

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Maddie’s Pet Rescue Adopt-a-thon

The goal of Maddie’s Pet Rescue Project of Alachua County is to find permanent, loving homes for about 300 animals each month and ultimately end the euthanasia of animals within the County. Working towards this goal, the partners of the project announce their annual Spring Adopt-a-thon “Lucky Pets” on March 24 and 25, 2007, offering a great opportunity for Alachua County residents to find a perfect pet for their family.

On the South Lawn of the Oaks Mall, just behind Macy’s, the partners of Maddie’s Pet Rescue of Alachua County will have their adoptable cats and dogs ready to meet all visitors. Whether looking for a pet to play catch and take daily jogs with, one with the patience to let your child dress up or hug on, or just a loving companion to come home to each day, there is a cat or dog with a unique personality waiting to go home with a loving person or family. Large, small, furry, shaggy, short-haired or ranch-loving, there will be pets at the Adopt-a-thon ideal for any lifestyle and family.

Maddie’s Pet Rescue project of Alachua County is a community-collaboration between the Alachua County Animal Services, Alachua County Humane Society, Gainesville Pet Rescue, Inc., Haile’s Angel Pet Rescue, Helping Hands Pet Rescue and Puppy Hill Farm Pet Rescue. The program’s goal is to end the euthanasia of healthy and treatable shelter dogs and cats in Alachua County by June 30, 2011. In the first five years of Maddie’s Pet Rescue Project, the partners were able to significantly increase adoptions and drastically decrease the number of pets euthanized; adoptions have gone up from 692 pets to 2,708 and the total euthanasia of pets has gone down from more than 8,000 pets to just over 4,000 pets annually. To keep the Partners’ promise to the animals of Alachua County, the help of citizens with loving homes is greatly needed.

Lucky Pets offers fun for the whole family, it will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 24th and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 25th.

To continue to save lives, the Maddie’s Pet Rescue partners greatly need your help. By donating any money you are able to give, animals will be saved. Donations will be accepted at the Adopt-a-thon as well as at any of the participating agency locations.

For more information about the Lucky Pets Adopt-a-thon, Maddie’s Pet Rescue of Alachua County or the participating pet rescue agencies, contact Chase Wiley at the Alachua County Humane Society, (352) 373-5855, ext. 15. or visit www.maddiespetrescueofalachua.org.

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Commission Meeting Highlights

Presentations, Proclamations and Recognitions

County Manager

Community Planning Group

County Manager’s Reports

  1. RETREAT: Friday, March 30, 2007 from 12:00 to 4:00 PM at the Health Department; Continue coordinating efforts and bring back budget issues during budget process.
  2. Cogon Grass Initiative, regarding a proposed program to deal with the spread of cogon grass; could be discussed at the retreat.

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Let’s All Get Involved - Alachua County Advisory Boards

The Alachua County Commission is committed to citizen involvement on its 33 advisory boards and is soliciting applications for the following vacancies:

Board of Adjustment : One citizen-at-large

CHOICES Health Services Advisory Board : One Health Policy Professional, one Hospital Employee, one Certified Public Accountant

Citizens Disability Advisory Committee : Three citizens-at-large

Community Agency Partnership Program: One citizen-at-large

Community Development Block Grant Advisory Committee : Three citizens-at-large, one alternate

Cultural and Environmental Funding Advisory Board : One Heritage organization member, one Alachua County resident alternate

Economic Development Advisory Board : One representative of UF

Environmental Protection Advisory Board : One alternate and seven citizens-at-large

Fair Housing Human Rights Board : One lending institution representative, one alternate

Health Care Board : One Alachua County Dental Association representative, one citizen who is a Low Income Health Care Consumer, two citizen representatives of Community Advocacy Groups

Historical Commission : One citizen-at-large

Local Planning Agency and Planning Commission: One citizen-at-large, one Building Industry Related citizen

Poverty Reduction Advisory Board : Two citizens-at-large with a disability, one citizen 55 or older, one low income citizen, one representative of faith-based organization

Regional Transit System Advisory Board : One senior citizen

Tourist Development Council : One alternate citizen-at-large

Veterans Service Advisory Board : One citizen-at-large, one citizen-at-large (alternate), one VFW Representative

Victims Services and Rape Crisis Center Advisory Council : Two citizens-at-large, one alternate

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Thank you for your continued interest in County Government!

Community Update is produced by the County Manager's Communications Office.