May 5th edition of:

Community Update - Earth Day Edition
A Report on the Activities of Alachua County Government

 

This Issues Features:

CodeRED Notification System “All Call”
U.S. Holocaust Museum Traveling Exhibit
County Update on Channel 12
Earth Day Event at Newnan’s Lake
Elmira Warren Appointed to National Human Services Board
Master Gardener Plant Sale
Recycled Paint Giveaway
What’s On “Alachua County Talks”
4-H Youth Day Camps

Crisis Center Presentation: Coping in These Distressing Times
National Drug Court Month
Storm Spotter Class
Family and Consumer Sciences Programs
Commission Meeting Highlights


CodeRED Notification System “All Call”

Alachua County Emergency Management is utilizing the CodeRED Emergency Notification System on Tuesday, May 4, 2010, to call the entire community.

The calls began in the morning and continue until the entire database has been attempted. This call gives County personnel the chance to operate the system as if there has been a community wide disaster.

The message that is being delivered directs recipients to the County web site to add additional contact numbers and it also asks that recipients spread the word by mentioning the system to family, friends and neighbors.

David Donnelly, Emergency Management Chief, suggests that, “All individuals and businesses should take the time to visit our website and add contact information to include cellular phones and other non-traditional phones as well as email and text addresses. If your contact information is not in the database you will not receive a call when an urgent message is sent.” In particular businesses should register, as well as individuals who have unlisted phone numbers, who have changed their phone number recently, and those who use a cellular phone exclusively or have Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phones, such as Vonage, as their primary numbers.

Donnelly urges citizens to log onto the County website at www.alachuacounty.us/em and follow the CodeRED link right sidebar of the page. Those without Internet access may call 352-264-6500, Monday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Required information includes a street address (physical address, no P.O. boxes) for location purposes and a primary phone number. Additional phone numbers, email and text addresses may also be entered.

For more information, click here, or contact Alachua County Emergency Management at 352-264-6500.

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U.S. Holocaust Museum Traveling Exhibit

From May 5 to June 30, the Headquarters Library will host the Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945 exhibition sponsored by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Between 1933 and 1945, Nazi Germany sought domination over Europe and, in what is now called the Holocaust, the total annihilation of Europe’s Jews. As part of its efforts to create a “master Aryan race,” the Nazi government persecuted other groups, including Germany’s homosexual men. Through reproductions of some 250 historic photographs and documents, this exhibit examines the rationale, means, and impact of the Nazi regime’s attempt to eradicate homosexuality that left thousands dead and shattered the lives of many more.

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County Update on Channel 12

County Update is a half hour news program providing in-depth information on County programs, services and initiatives. County Update airs on Community 12 and the Video On Demand website.

Click here to view this month’s show.

Features This Month

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Earth Day Event at Newnan’s Lake

On a beautiful, sunny Friday afternoon, the usually quiet Earl P. Powers Park on the Newnan’s Lake shore was transformed when over 85 volunteers participated in a canal/lake shore restoration event hosted by the Alachua County Environmental Protection Department (ACEPD) as a kick-off celebration for Earth Week 2010.

The event, held on Friday, April 16th from 2:00 to 5:30 pm, attracted a diversity of groups including the Gainesville Earth Scouts, students from the Professional Academies Magnet at Loften High School, Eastside High School and Kanapaha Middle School, UF Wetlands Club, youth groups, and nearby residents. Approximately 60 native plants, including some edible trees such as mulberry and Chickasaw plum, were planted along the canal’s shoreline to enhance fish habitat and provide shade for locals who enjoy fishing at this County park.

“All our volunteers were so enthusiastic about helping us plant and enhance the canal shore. The spirit of Earth Week was certainly in the air, and we received many requests for similar events in the future,” said Stephen Hofstetter, ACEPD Natural Resources Program Manager. He continued, “Our program’s mission is to protect the county’s natural resources, and organizing this event seemed the perfect way to get people interested in learning more about shoreline restoration or other ways residents can improve habitat on their own property.”

All volunteers received a small native tree to plant in their own yards, and were able to interact with ACEPD Natural Resources and Water Resources programs staff in an informal setting to ask questions about Alachua County’s regulations and the services we provide. “Residents may not always realize that EPD staff perform both technical assistance as well as regulatory duties. Our staff have a strong commitment to assist citizens with making better environmental management choices on their property,” said Chris Bird, ACEPD Director. One resident was especially interested in replanting a sizable grassy area in her yard with native vegetation, and was able to gain valuable information on what types of trees would be best suited for her conditions.

At the end of the day, a large group of somewhat dirty and tired, yet happy and well-fed volunteers (thanks to a generous donation by Five Star pizza owner Matt Funk), returned home with a tree to plant in their own yard and a new appreciation for this county park and its natural resources, leaving ACEPD staff grateful to have received such a positive response. On the way back out to the parking lot, one teenage participant cell phoned her father to ask if he would help her plant her take home tree over the weekend. “However, we did get one complaint. One of the youngsters said that there was not enough sugar in the Gatorade.” said Kathy Fanning, senior planner with ACEPD Natural Resources Program.

ACEPD staff would like to especially thank:

For more information about ACEPD’s programs (including shoreline restoration) visit ACEPD’s website (click here to visit), or Current Problems Inc.’s website (click here to visit) or call us at 352-364-6800.


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Elmira Warren Appointed to National Human Services Board

Elmira K. Warren, Alachua County’s Community Support Services Director was recently appointed to serve on the Board of Directors of the National Association of County Human Services Administrators (NACHSA). As the only organization representing county social services agencies, NACHSA works to promote and strengthen networks of county and community human services that protect children, families and the elderly, and that move disadvantaged families into self-sufficiency.

As a Board member, Ms. Warren will represent Alachua County on monthly calls and updates on federal legislation and to gather and share information about county human service policies, financing, and operations. Organization members also work to ensure that the federal government invests in preventive services so that the county taxpayer burden is mitigated.

Jo, Weber, NACHSA President and Director of the Sonoma County, California Department of Human Services stated, “Many of our nation’s children and their families are experiencing very tough economic times, and the numbers continue to climb. NACHSA members work with vulnerable individuals and families to improve their lives and strengthen our communities. I am very pleased that Elmira K. Warren has accepted the request to serve. Her experience and insights in facing these challenges are a welcome addition to the Board.”

Based in Washington, D.C. NACSHA supports the professional development of administrators committed to delivering quality services to county residents. It provides information from a variety of sources to help counties navigate the ever changing federal landscape. The organization also educated federal policymakers on the roles and responsibilities of county human services systems.

For more information about NACSHA, visit www.nachsa.org.

For more information about Alachua County Support Services, click here, or call 352-264-6700.

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Master Gardener Plant Sale

The Alachua County Master Gardeners Annual Plant Sale takes place on Saturday, May 22, 2010 from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Extension Office (2800 NE 39 Avenue, Gainesville, corner of Waldo Rd & NE 39 Ave.)

All year Master Gardeners start from seed or propagate their favorite plants for this sale. A variety of herbs, annuals, perennials, natives and more will be available. Master Gardeners will be on site for advice on caring for your plants.

This annual plant sale is a fundraiser for the Alachua County Master Gardener Volunteer Program. In 2009 these volunteers gave over 5,700 hours of service to the citizens of Alachua County and made contact with nearly 20,000 people seeking gardening advice. There are currently 11 school gardens throughout Alachua County elementary schools run by these volunteers. School children are learning about growing fruits and vegetables. Last year over 75 pounds of food grown at schools was donated to Bread of the Mighty Food Bank. Community gardens are continually being established for local residents.

Admission and parking is free. Bring a box, bag or wagon to carry plants in.

For more information on the plant sale or to ask a master gardener for advice, contact the Extension office at 352-955-2402.

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Recycled Paint Giveaway

The Alachua County Environmental Protection Department is holding the 16th Annual Recycled Latex Paint Giveaway on Saturday, May 8, 2010. The event will distribute 3,600 gallons of 75% post consumer recycled latex paint to community organizations, civic groups and people with special needs, free of charge. The paint can be used for homes and businesses that cannot afford the cost of new paint.

The Recycled Latex Paint Giveaway event will take place beginning at 8 a.m. at the Alachua County Hazardous Waste Collection Center, located at the Leveda Brown Environmental Park and Transfer Station (5125 NE 63rd Avenue, Gainesville, 2 miles north of 39th Avenue, off Waldo Road). The recycled paint will be given away on a first-come, first-served basis and will be available in 5 gallon pails with six colors to choose from: off white, beige, gray, terra cotta, green and blue. There is a 10 gallon limit per resident.

“A total of over 50,000 gallons of recycled paint has been provided to Alachua County residents since the inception of the program in 1994.” said Kurt Seaburg, Hazardous Waste Coordinator for the Alachua County Environmental Protection Department. “The program began as a means of assisting homeowners and businesses beautify their property while recycling a product that still has value. The cost to recycle the paint is only slightly more than the cost to dispose of the unwanted paint by a solidification process.”

The latex paint is collected throughout the year by the Hazardous Waste Program and shipped to a paint manufacturer where it is blended and repackaged into a 75% post consumer paint and is suitable for either interior or exterior usage.

For any resident that is not able to attend the event, non-recycled free paint of varying quality and quantity which is dropped off by residents who no longer need it is available at the Alachua County Hazardous Waste Collection Center’s Recycle/Reuse Area. Residents can pick up some of this paint and other household products during normal business hours: Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. until noon.

For more information about Hazardous Waste Collection, click here.

For more information about the Recycled Latex Paint Giveaway, contact the Alachua County Hazardous Waste Collection Center at 352-334-0440.

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What’s On “Alachua County Talks”

Check out the latest editions of Alachua County Talks on Community 12 TV by viewing the Channel 12 Show Schedule.

Click here to watch Alachua County Environmental Protection Department (EPD) Director Chris Bird provide an overview of Alachua County EPD services and initiatives, including water quality and conservation, land and habitat preservation, and pollution prevention.

Click here to watch Alachua County Sustainability Program Manager Sean McLendon give an in depth look at sustainability issues facing Alachua County and looks at efforts to address those issues, including the work of the County’s innovative Energy Conservation Strategies Commission (ECSC) and efforts to locate a resource recovery park in Alachua County to attract businesses which create products from recycled materials.

Click here to watch Kanapaha Botanical Gardens Director Don Goodman provide an overview of the founding, funding, and future of the botanical gardens.

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4-H Youth Day Camps

The Alachua County Extension Office is pleased to announce the schedule for 2010 4-H Youth Day Camps. All of these programs (with the exception of Shooting Sports) are held at the Extension Office (2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville). Space is limited so make your reservation now.

Day Camps include:

Payment must accompany registration. Contact Matt Benge, 4-H Youth Development Agent at 352-955-2402 or mbenge@alachuacounty.us to receive a registration form.

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Crisis Center Presentation: Coping in These Distressing Times

Alachua County Crisis Center Director, Dr. Marshall Knudson is holding a presentation entitled, “Coping in These Distressing Times: Thoughts on Emotional Survival,” on Wednesday, May 19, 2010, from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., in the conference room of the Alachua County Health Department (224 SE 24th St., Gainesville).

This presentation will provide participants an overview of how today’s increasing stressors, concerns and responsibilities tend to impact us, followed by thoughts and strategies to increase our resilience and connections during these difficult times.

Dr. Knudson, inviting residents to attend, said “Financial concerns, job insecurity or loss, family problems, health and health insurance issues, worsening economy, interpersonal concerns and isolation, worry about the future; for so many of us, these are times of increasing stress, concerns and responsibilities paired with diminishing support and resources. What does it mean to emotionally survive in these times of heightened distress and instability?”

Dr. Knudson, a licensed psychologist, has worked in the field of crisis and suicide intervention for over 30 years and has been director of the Alachua County Crisis Center for the last 25. Dr. Knudson holds the positions of adjunct faculty in the University of Florida’s departments of Psychology and Counselor Education, and affiliate staff at the University of Florida Counseling Center. He has been active on the local, state, and national level as a speaker, consultant, trainer, and interventionist in the areas of suicide, crisis, and community trauma response. He is a senior certification examiner and a member of the certification committee with the American Association of Suicidology, the certification and training subcommittee of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a board member of the Florida Suicide Prevention Coalition and, most recently, has been appointed by the Governor to the Florida Suicide Prevention Council.

For more information, contact Dr. Knudson at 352-264-6792.

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National Drug Court Month

May 2010 is celebrated as National Drug Court Month. The Alachua County Drug Court received a proclamation by the Board of County Commissioners during the regular April 27 meeting for local recognition of this nationwide event. The Honorable Walter M. Green will receive the proclamation on behalf of the Drug Court. He and the Honorable Ysleta W. McDonald preside over the Drug Court.

Alachua County’s program will join other Florida Drug Courts to celebrate the success of Drug Court this year by participating in the Florida statewide “Drug Court Goes Food Court” initiative.

Drug Court is partnering with Bread of the Mighty Food Bank, the local member of the Florida Association of Food Banks, in a drug court food collection program. “This is a wonderful opportunity to provide drug court participants a chance to give back to their community,” says Drug Court Supervisor, Frank Owens. “The participants will be collecting and donating nonperishable food, toiletries and paper products or donating their time to the food bank.” Food collection bins will be available in the Drug Court office at the rear entrance of 249 W. University from May 3rd through May 14th.

Other events planned include the May 7th graduation for participants that have successfully completed the rigorous program requirements to successfully lead a drug-free life. Court will be held before the Honorable Walter M. Green at 10 a.m. on May 7th in courtroom 1B of the Alachua County Courthouse and is open to the public.

Nationally, more than 2,300 Drug Courts will serve more than 120,000 people in 2010. Chemical dependency knows no race, gender, age or socio-economic background and while it is pervasive, it is also treatable. Alachua County’s Drug Court program provides supervision and treatment to reduce crime and habilitate non-violent substance abusing offenders referred to the program by the Office of the State Attorney. The program was established as one of the first Drug Courts in the nation and has served more than 2,000 participants in its 16 year history. The program is fully funded by the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners and works as a partner with the local criminal justice system and community-based treatment and social service agencies.

For more information, contact Drug Court Supervisor, Frank Owens at 352-384-3199 or fowens@alachuacounty.us.


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Storm Spotter Class

Alachua County Emergency Management, in cooperation with the National Weather Service Jacksonville, is sponsoring a Basic and Advanced Storm Spotter class on Friday, May 14, 2010, from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. The class is held at the Alachua County Emergency Operations Center (1100 SE 27th Street, Gainesville).

“Even with advancements in technology, such as Doppler radar, government officials still must rely on a network of trained volunteers to become their eyes and ears on the ground to provide better weather watch and warning services.” said David Donnelly, Alachua County Emergency Management Chief. “You can be the one to make a difference and be an asset to our community.”

The mission of the National Weather Service and local Emergency Management is to protect lives and property during severe weather incidents.

For more information or to register, contact Alachua County Emergency Management at 352-264-6500 or acem@alachuacounty.us.

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Family and Consumer Sciences Programs

The Alachua County Extension Office is pleased to offer the following Family and Consumer Sciences Programs, for May 2010. These programs are offered by Dr. Brenda Williams, Family and Consumer Sciences Agent. All of these programs are held at the Extension Office (2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville), unless otherwise indicated.

For more information about these programs call 352-955-2402. Click here for additional programs offered by the Extension Office.

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Commission Highlights

National Drug Court Month
The Board proclaimed May 2010 as “National Drug Court Month” in Alachua County, Florida.
Attachment: 
National Drug Court Month1.pdf

2010 Census Complete Count Committee
The Board
recognized the 2010 Census Complete Count Committee for Alachua County and present each member with a certificate of appreciation.

Alachua County Water Conservation Week
The Board proclaimed April 26 through May 2nd, 2010 as “Alachua County Water Conservation Week” in Alachua County, Florida.
Attachment: 
water conservation week1.pdf

Library Appreciation Month
The Board proclaimed April 2010 as “Library Appreciation Month” in Alachua County, Florida.
Attachment: 
LibraryApprMo2010.pdf

Family Reunification Week
The Board proclaimed May 2 - 8, 2010 as “Family Reunification Week” in Alachua County, Florida
Attachment: 
Family Reunification Week2.pdf

Rules of Procedure
The Board approved the resolution to amend the Board of County Commissioners’ Rules of Procedure to add a section on Proclamations in accordance with the attached summary document and authorize the Chair to sign.
Attachment: 
Summary4_2010.pdf
Attachment: 
RESOrules4_2010.pdf
Attachment: 
FinalRules2010_4.pdf
Downtown Edible Garden Project
The Board directed the County Manager to approve the partnership and public purpose form to establish the Alachua County Downtown Edible Garden Project.
Cost: $1,623
Attachment: 
Edible_garden.pdf

Alien Minors Act
The Board approved a resolution in support of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act
Attachment: 
DREAM Act Resolution.pdf

Alachua County Website
The Board received the presentation of the new Alachua County Website

Post Disaster Re-Development Plan
The Board
heard the presentation of the Post Disaster Re-Development Plan.
Attachment: 
AC_PDRP_BoCCMtg_presentation_042710.pptx
Attachment: 
Alachua County Post Disaster Redevelopment Plan March 2010.pdf

Eat Local Month
The Board proclaimed May 2010 as “Eat Local Month” in Alachua County, Florida
Attachment: 
Eat Local Proclamation Alachua County 2010.pdf

Budget Amendments
The Board conducted a public hearing, adopted resolutions and approved budget amendments for the FY10 Budget.
Attachment: 
FY10 Mid Year Supporting Info.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Mid Year Master Advertisement.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Mid Year Narratives Updated.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Resolution for Midyear MSTU Law Enforcement budget.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Resolution for Midyear Alachua County Forever budget.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 MY Consolidated BA.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Resolution for Midyear General Government budget.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Resolution for Midyear MSTU Unincorporated budget.pdf
Attachment: 
FY10 Resolution for Midyear MSTU Fire Protection Services budget.pdf

Joint Participation Agreement
The Board executed the Joint Participation Agreement between Alachua County and the Suwannee River Water Management District for the purchase of the Alachua County Forever Santa Fe River Osceola Land and Timber Tract, and authorized staff to execute additional documents as necessary to close the transaction.
Amount: $625,000.00
Attachment: 
Exhibit 2 Osceola Land Timber Evaluation.pdf
Attachment: 
BoCC100427 ACF Osceola JPA.pptx
Attachment: 
Exhibit 1 Joint Part Agrmt SRWMD Final.pdf

 

Rezone From RE-1 District to R-1aa
Concerning ZOM-02-10: A request to rezone from RE-1 (Estate Residential) district to R-1aa (Single Family Residential) district on approximately 67 acres, the Board heard the item and direct staff to schedule the second (adoption) hearing for this zoning request

Attachment: ZOM0210 Powerpoint Presentation.pdf
Attachment: 
Zoning Application.pdf
Attachment: 
ZOM0210 Staff Report.pdf
Attachment: 
Public Comments ZOM0210a.pdf
Attachment: 
Rezoning Information Report Exhibit D.pdf
Attachment: 
ZOM0210.pptx

 

 

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Alachua County Advisory Boards

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

Get Involved - Click here for an application: http://www.alachuacounty.us/government/bocc/advisoryboard.aspx

Applications are also available at the County Manager’s Office on the Second Floor of the County Administration Building, 12 SE 1st St., Gainesville. For more information, call (352) 264-6904.

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Thank you for your continued interest in County Government!

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