October 28th edition of:

Community Update
A Report on the Activities of Alachua County Government

 

This Issues Features:

Strike Out Hunger Community-Wide Food Drive
New Economic Development Coordinator
International Fellowship Exchange
Election Dates Are Set
Help Wanted
November Extension Programs
What's On "Alachua County Talks"
Commission Highlights

Strike Out Hunger Community-Wide Food Drive

In honor of "National Hunger Month" the "Strike Out Hunger Community-Wide Food Drive" will take place on Monday November 7, 2011, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The drop off location for non-perishable food donations is the Alachua County Fairgrounds located at 2900 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville. All donations will be distributed to local food banks, pantries, and student take home backpack/food programs.

This year's Co-Champions are Alachua County Commissioner Rodney J. Long and City of Gainesville Mayor Craig Lowe.

The mission of the Strike Out Hunger Community-Wide Food Drive is to collaborate with government, educational, law enforcement, and not-for-profit agencies as well as local businesses, faith based organizations, and City and County residents, to develop an all encompassing food drive to help feed the hungry in Alachua County.

The goal is to build a safety net for those in need of food, increase the availability of food to those who are nutritionally challenged, bring awareness to the ever growing issue of hunger, and develop a work plan to unite community food collections. An additional goal is to collect 100,000 pounds of food and 1,000 turkeys.

On Saturday November 5, 2011, those attending the Florida vs. Vanderbilt Homecoming game are encouraged to drop off nonperishable items. There will be a collection area at the Verizon Gator FanFest area (outside of Gate 2 of the O'Connell Center) beginning three hours prior to kick-off (TBD).

"I am always impressed by how this community comes together to help those in need," said Commissioner Long, "At our planning workshops, over 60 community leaders have come together to assess the strengths and weaknesses in our present efforts, establish linkages, and identify ways to create a food security system that will improve the self-reliance of community members over their food needs."

Two important items:
September 20, 2011 Community-Wide Food Drive Workshop Minutes
Strike Out Hunger Community-Wide Food Drive Poster

For more information concerning food donations, contact Marie Small at 352-264-6745 or mdsmall@alachuacounty.us.

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New Economic Development Coordinator

Alachua County recently hired its first Economic Development Coordinator. His name is Edgar Campa-Palafox, and he offered Community Update a short description of his goals and plans for this new position.

"Having an Economic Development Coordinator will allow Alachua County to have a focal point in the county regarding economic development issues, having a person exclusively dedicated to work on these issues. I will have a collaborating and facilitating role, connecting the different county programs and departments, by preparing and implementing economic development plans, program and services across the organization.

The main duty of the new economic development coordinator is to expand collaboration between the county and chamber, merchant's associations, redevelopment agencies, and other public, private and non-for-profit associations. This will help our community by leveraging different initiatives currently underway in our region."

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International Fellowship Exchange

From September 29-October 14, Alachua County was selected to be part of US State Department funded international exchange on sustainability with Indonesian professionals. In the spirit of shared learning and continuous innovation, the program hosted three fellows: Mr. I Made Sudarma from Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia; Mr. Muhammad Yunus from Palembang, South of Sumatera and Mr. Ahmad Suhijriah from Jakarta.

This event was coordinated with a select number of communities, through the International City /County Management Association (ICMA) and US State Department. Alachua County was selected because of its innovations in the field of sustainability: growing economic opportunity; increasing social equity and efforts to improve environmental outcomes. Sean McLendon, Sustainability Program Manager noted, "We are proud to be selected for this opportunity as our County is a center of higher learning and ideas are our greatest export." Continuing, he said, "Our hope is that this exchange will help us build a better community highlighting what makes us great, while pointing out where our challenges remain." Broadly, the intended outcome of this professional exchange was to find better solutions to common problems while building good will between nations.

The US State Department/ICMA exchange program seeks to, "promote local government partnerships, establish networks and international relationships, and lead to creativity in identifying locally appropriate solutions for creating more sustainable communities within the panorama of a changing climate. This program will also offer an opportunity to connect international local government leaders with city and county managers and other local government practitioners, nonprofit organizations and state and federal agencies in the United States."

ICMA and the US State Department provided the funding and support for the exchange.

About the Fellows
Mr. I Made Sudarma from Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia - Mr. Sudarma is the Head of BPKS in Denspar. Mr. Sudarma is responsible for coordinating the solid waste management in SARBAGITA-BALI. He has an interest solid waste management's impact on climate change.

Mr. Muhammad Yunus from Palembang, South of Sumatera, Indonesia - Mr. Yunus is the Head of Environment Recovery in Palmbang. He is responsible for urban planning, economics and social planning. He is interested in learning about our regional planning efforts.

Mr. Ahmad Suhijriah from Jakarta – Mr. Suhijriah works with the Association of Indonesia Municipalities as the Manager of Environment and Infrastructure. He is part of APEKSI, an association of 97 Indonesian cities that support climate change action at local government level.

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Election Dates Are Set

The 2012 Election dates have been set for the State and the City of Gainesville.

2012 Election Dates
Presidential Preference Primary Election - January 31, 2012 Last day to register to vote or change party affiliation - January 3, 2012
City of Gainesville Election - January 31, 2012
Last day to register to vote - January 3, 2012

Candidate Qualifying Information for the City of Gainesville Election
Qualifying Dates - Noon, November 14, 2011 through Noon, November 18, 2011
Qualifying Fee - Commissioner $304.03
Offices on Ballot - At-Large 1 Commission Seat and District 1 Commission Seat
Anyone interested in qualifying or needing further information, please visit our website at VoteAlachua.com or call the Supervisor of Elections Office at (352) 374-5252.
City of Gainesville Run-off Election - February 28, 2012
Last day to register to vote is January 30, 2012
Primary Election - August 14, 2012
The last day to register to vote or change your party affiliation is July 16, 2012
General Election - November 6, 2012
The last day to register to vote is October 9, 2012

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact the Supervisor of Elections Office at (352) 374-5252.


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Help Wanted

Alachua County currently has open positions. Click on the links for each position to find out more about job functions and requirements. Please take note of application closing dates. All of the positions listed below are full -time openings.

The County's employment webpage is updated regularly. Click here to see all of the current job openings.

Current Openings
Fleet Technician/Department of Public Works - Fleet Management/Apply by: 11/04/11 Click here for more information.
This is a skilled mechanical and technical position in the Department of Public Works, Office of Fleet Management.

An employee assigned to this classification is responsible for diagnosing, repairing, overhauling and maintaining a wide variety of fleet vehicles and equipment, with minimal supervision.

LaborerII/Department of Public Works - Road and Bridge Apply by: 11/04/11 Click here for more information.
This is limited skilled manual work requiring the application of techniques and knowledge above the basic laboring level. Acts as work leader in absence of a supervisor, operates equipment requiring a degree of learned skills and performs light carpentry work.

An employee assigned to this classification performs advanced laboring tasks including the operation of light mowers, farm and industrial equipment or the use of specialized machines and hand tools.

Network Systems Analyst/Department of Information and Telecommunication Services Apply by: 11/14/11 Click here for more information.
This is responsible advanced technical work in the design and management of network information systems in the Alachua County Department Information & Telecommunication Services.

An employee assigned to this classification develops complex network management information systems.


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November Extension Programs

These programs will be held at the Alachua County Cooperative Extension Office (2800 NE 39th Avenue, Gainesville).

Family & Consumer Sciences Programs

Before You Tie the Knot – November 7 & 14, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. 
Before You Tie the Knot is a premarital preparation course. Topics include: Communication, Conflict Management & Resolution, Financial Responsibility & Spending Plans and Children & Parenting Responsibilities

There is no cost to attend this two evening class. Pre-register by November 2 by calling 352-337-6209.

Building Your Financial Future (A personal financial management program - for those filing bankruptcy only) – November 15, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.  
Topics include: Develop Your Budget, Money Management Skills, Use Credit Responsibly and Consumers Rights & Responsibilities

Cost to attend this class is $10.00 (cash only) for course materials. Pre-register by November 10, by calling 352-955-2402.

Environmental Horticulture Programs

Native Plants for Your Florida-Friendly™ Landscape – November 9, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Native plants grow very well in sandy soils and challenging climate. Learn which natives would work best in the landscape. No cost for this class.

Groundcovers and Turf Alternatives for Florida-Friendly™ Landscapes – November 17, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
If parts of the lawn are not growing well, because of too much shade or other problems, groundcovers may be a good alternative. Come learn which groundcover would work best in different yards. No cost for this class.

Agriculture & Natural Resources Programs

Rural Energy Workshop - Monday, November 7, 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Come learn about loans and grants for small businesses and agricultural producers, anaerobic digesters, wood gasification, biomass, solar feed in tariffs and other energy conservation tools.

There is no cost to attend this class.  Call 352-955-2402 to register by November 4.

General Standards (CORE) Pesticide Training Workshop - Thursday, November 10, 9:30 a.m. to noon
This workshop is designed to prepare commercial and public pesticide applicators to take the General Standards (Core) Pesticide Exam. 

There is a $5.00 registration fee. CEU’s will be awarded. Register by November 8 by calling 352-955-2402.

Fall Pond Workshop - Wednesday, November 16, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
This workshop is for anyone interested in managing their pond for recreational fishing.  Topics to be covered include: fish species selection, stocking rate, pond water quality, aquatic weeds, and controlling fish diseases and parasites.  Guest speaker include Dr. Chuck Cichra, IFAS Extension Fisheries Specialist and Dr. Denise Petty IFAS Aquaculture Extension Veterinarian. 

Registration fee is $8.00 and includes the meal.  To register, please call 352-955-2402 by November 14.

Commercial Horticulture Program

Ethnic Vegetable Production (Co-instructor: Barton Wilder) – November 8, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Learn which vegetables do best and how to grow them in Alachua County.

This class is free. Pre-register by calling 352-337-6209.

Green Industries Best Management Practices Workshop – November 29, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This workshop is designed to provide training in Best Management Practices for those working in the lawn, landscape, pest control or municipal grounds areas. This is a required training class for all commercial and institutional fertilizer applicators in Alachua County according to the Alachua County Fertilizer Standards and Management Practices Code.

Cost $25.00 (includes materials and lunch). Please pre-register by November 23 by calling 352-337-6209.

Agriculture & Natural Resources Programs

Rural Energy Workshop, Monday, November 7 6 p.m.to 7:30 p.m.,

This workshop is a joint project of Alachua County Extension, the USDA Rural Development Program, and the Florida Farm Bureau. Come learn about loan and grants for small businesses and agricultural producers, anaerobic digesters, wood gasification, biomass, solar feed in tariffs, and other energy conservation tools.

There is no cost to attend this class.  To register please call (352)955-2402 by November 4.

General Standards (CORE) Pesticide Training Workshop, Thursday, November 10, 9:30 a.m. to noon

This workshop is designed to prepare commercial and public pesticide applicators to take the General Standards (Core) Pesticide Exam. 

There is a $5.00 registration fee, please register by November 8th at (352)955-2402. CEU’s will be awarded. For more information, please contact Barton Wilder at (352)955-2402.

Fall Pond Workshop, Wednesday, November 16, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Topics to be covered include: fish species selection, stocking rate, pond water quality, aquatic weeds, and controlling fish diseases and parasites.  Guest speaker include Dr. Chuck Cichra, IFAS Extension Fisheries Specialist and Dr. Denise Petty IFAS Aquaculture Extension Veterinarian. 

Registration fee is $8.00 and includes meal.  To register, please call (352)955-2402 by November 14, 2011. 

Livestock Programs

Beef Cattle Palpation Workshop, November 17 & 18,, 8:30 a.m. to noon at the UF Beef Teaching Unit, 3301 SW 23rd Terrace, Gainesville.

Topics include: reproduction basics, calving difficulty, breeding season management and palpation.

The class is limited to the first 16 participants.  The registration fee is $40.00 (includes lunch on Friday, November 18, 2011 & supplies).  To register please call (352)955-2402 by November 1, 2011. 

Basic Backyard Poultry Workshop, November 21, 5:30 p.m.

Topics include: breed selection, nutrition for backyard laying flocks, chicken tractors and requirements for selling eggs.

The registration fee is $6.00 (meal included) please register by November 15, 2011, at (352)955-2402. 

For more information about these programs call 352-955-2402. Visit http://alachua.ifas.ufl.edu/calendar.shtml for additional programs offered by the Extension Office.


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What's On "Alachua County Talks"

Click here to view this edition of "Alachua County Talks." It features an in-depth interview with Anthony Clarizio, Executive Director of Elder Care of Alachua County, Inc. The subject is the recently opened Gainesville/Alachua County Senior Recreation Center located at 5701 NW 34th St. in Gainesville, FL (Northside Park).

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

For more information, call the Alachua County Communications Office at 352-374-5204.

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Commission Highlights

Announcements
The Board heard Announcements by Mark Sexton Communications Coordinator.  Two new Communications Office PSA’s were viewed.
1.
Facebook PSA
2.
Buy Local PSA

Hunger Awareness Month
The Board proclaimed November as “Hunger Awareness Month” in Alachua County, Florida.
Attachment: 
Hunger Awareness Proclamation.pdf

Code Enforcement Board
The Board heard the presentation by the Code Enforcement Board of their 2011 Annual Report and their 2012 Work plan.
Attachment: 2011 CEB Report.PDF

Rural Concerns Advisory Committee
The Board heard the presentation of the Rural Concerns Advisory Committee Annual Report for 2010-2011 and Work Plan for 2011-2012
Attachment: 
Rural Concerns WKPL.pdf
Attachment: 
RuralConcernsPresentation.pdf

Southwest Transportation Improvement District Agreement
The Board approved the Southwest Transportation Improvement District Agreement and authorized the Chair to sign the Agreement
Attachment: 
SWD_TransportationImprovementAgreement_Oct25.pptx
Attachment: 
SWD_TransportationImprovementAgreement_Oct25.pdf
Attachment: 
SW District Trans Improvement Celebration Pointe Final.pdf

FY12-FY16 Utility Savings Reinvestment Capital Improvement Program
The Board approved amending the FY12-FY16 Utility Savings Reinvestment Capital Improvement Program (CIP) to include electric motor replacement projects scheduled in FY13-FY16
Attachment: 
Fund 210 Reconciliation as of Sept 30 2011.pdf
Attachment: 
FY12 USRP 5 YR CIP.pdf
Hal Brady Recreation Center
The Board approved the City of Alachua request for $500,000 to expand the Hal Brady Recreation Center through the purchase of land and construction of Lacrosse/Field Sports arenas.

Redistricting of County Commissioner Districts
At Commissioner Byerly’s request, the Alachua County Commission will conduct a Public Hearing, on the subject of redistricting of County Commissioner districts, on Nov.8, 2011 at 5 p.m. in room 209 of the County Administration building located at 12 SE 1st Street, downtown Gainesville.  Alachua County residents who are interested in running for the County Commission but do not live in the district of interest, are invited to address the Commission to request consideration to include their residence in the redrawn lines for that district.


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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.