As we head toward the summer months we just seem to get busier and busier with different events and activities in fabulous Ward 5. A new responsibility that I’m happy to focus my time and energy on is my position with the Las Vegas Housing Authority. I was recently appointed to this board and look forward to representing Ward 5 and the city of Las Vegas on issues that affect many citizens. The Housing Authority is a key resource for those who need assistance in finding affordable housing. We are working toward consolidating the local housing authorities so that processes can be streamlined and services will be easier for local residents to use. A public meeting to provide an update on the consolidation process is scheduled for Friday, May 15, at 8:30 a.m. at the Veteran’s Memorial Leisure Services Center, located at 101 N. Pavilion Center Drive. You can find more information about the Housing Authority and its services on their Web site at http://www.haclv.org/.
WEST LAS VEGAS PLAN AND NEIGHBORHOOD ADVISORY BOARD
The West Las Vegas Neighborhood Advisory Board (WLVNAB) was created in April 1992 to identify and research the many needs and disparities of the historical West Las Vegas community. During this period, the advisory board, community members, and city staff developed goals, objectives, and recommendations in the following areas: Socio-Economic, Land Use, Housing, Community Facilities, Circulation, Business Activity, and Urban Design/Visual Image. The end result was the West Las Vegas Plan, which was created and adopted in 1994 by the city of Las Vegas Council. To date, the plan has foregone four revisions.
In 2008, the city of Las Vegas co-hosted the 100th Annual American Planning Association (APA) conference, which allowed certified planners from around the country to actively participate in a Community Planning Workshop focused on the historic West Las Vegas community. As a result, three focus areas were identified: community connectivity, housing, and revitalization.
In an effort to keep the momentum and further encourage the citizen participation process, Ward 5 Councilman Ricki Y. Barlow is looking for passionate, energetic, and committed community members (residents, business owners, or faith-based leaders) to serve on the re-established West Las Vegas Advisory Board. The board will serve in an advisory capacity to the councilman in addressing community issues and developing solutions to move the West Las Vegas planning agenda forward.
If you are interested in applying to serve on this exciting and challenging advisory board, please contact Councilman Ricki Y. Barlow’s office at 229-5443 for more information.
West Las Vegas Plan – Upcoming Meeting
A community meeting regarding an update of the West Las Vegas Plan was held on Thursday, April 2, 2009 at the Doolittle Community Center. It is proposed that the West Las Vegas Plan will be amended to incorporate the following additions: a section to incorporate recommendations from the 2008 APA Community Planning Workshop; a section to encourage the implementation of streetscape and median improvements, community identity markers and improved neighborhood livability; and a section recommending improved access into Historic West Las Vegas. Information from the April 2 meeting is available on the Ward 5 Web site.
At the first meeting community meeting, 57 attendees signed-in and 31 provided comment cards.
A second community meeting will be held on Thursday, April 30, at the Doolittle Community Center in multi-purpose room C at 6 PM. The center is located at 1950 N. J St. The purpose of the meeting is to review the public input from the meeting on April 2, 2009 and receive recommendations for amending the West Las Vegas Plan document.
COMMUNITY DONATION REDIRECTION FOR THE HOMELESS
It may seem like the best way to help our homeless living on the streets is to deliver food, clothing and tents directly to them, but it’s only a temporary band-aid. Although efforts are well intentioned, street donations often have a negative impact such as increased litter and waste, which results in increased cleaning costs and health and safety concerns. The purpose of the Community Donation Redirection (CDR) effort is to redirect the donation efforts of community and faith based organizations and citizens for improved resource coordination and to not only provide a single service or item, but to connect the homeless to services and assistance that will end their homelessness. For more information on how you can best help the homeless please call Tara Ulmer with the city of Las Vegas Neighborhood Services Department at (702) 229-2330 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org. We thank you for your compassion. We appreciate all efforts… please don’t stop donating, just donate responsibly.
YOUTH CAN DO IT!
The city of Las Vegas provides opportunities for youth to make a difference in the community. If you are a city of Las Vegas youth resident between the ages of 10 and 17 who desires to make a positive impact in your community, the Youth Neighborhood Association Partnership Program (YNAPP) is for YOU. YNAPP offers grant funds for participants to identify and address community needs from a YOUTH perspective.
Identify a need...be creative, Think Green? Beautify a neighborhood? Paint a mural? Develop a workshop? Come up with a great idea and go for it! Applications are available summer 2009.
For more information on the YNAPP program or to be placed on the interest list, contact Kelly Woods, YNAPP program administrator, at (702) 229-5267or via e-mail at email@example.com.
MARTIN L. KING BOULEVARD CONSTRUCTION UPDATE AND UPCOMING TRAFFIC ADVISORY
Construction on the Martin L. King Boulevard improvement project is nearing the halfway mark. The city’s Public Works Department has put together some information so that the community can get a feel for the progress that has occurred so far. A brochure with all the details has been posted on the Ward 5 Web site. We encourage you to review the brochure to learn more about the project.
In addition, we wanted to make you aware of an upcoming closure. Starting at 12:01 a.m., Tuesday, April 28, and continuing through the next seven days, the freeway on ramp to Interstate 15 from Martin L. King Boulevard will be completely closed. Traffic lane restrictions will also be in effect on Martin L. King between Bonanza Road and Alta Drive.
The temporary traffic disruptions are necessary as crews do paving work associated with the Martin L. King Boulevard widening project. The on ramp to I-15 should reopen to access on Monday, May 4.
HEALTHY LIFESTYLE EVENT
Councilman Barlow along with Ward 1 Councilwoman Lois Tarkanian hosted a healthy lifestyle event on Feb. 20, at the Albertson’s located at 1001 S. Rainbow Blvd. This event was designed to promote awareness of maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Coca-Cola presented a $10,000 check to the Las Vegas-Clark County Urban League. The check was presented in celebration of Black History Month. The money will go toward programs that help promote good nutrition for local seniors. Seniors from Harry Levy Gardens Apartments and children from Rose Warren Elementary School attended. The Albertson’s store now has identifying tags on its shelves to help patrons find healthy eating items. The seniors and children were given a tour of the store and brochures and other resources on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle were given out.
RECENT NEIGHBORHOOD MEETINGS
During the month of February, Councilman Barlow hosted several neighborhood meetings throughout Ward 5.
The meetings were intended to inform the constituents of Ward 5 about information such as the new City Hall development, the Redevelopment Agency, new services available from the City Clerk’s Office, updated information about power saving opportunities from NV Energy and even foreclosure prevention tips from our Neighborhood Services Department.
Councilman Barlow discussed a myriad of topics pertaining specifically to Ward 5 including the development of Union Park, the widening of Martin L. King Boulevard and other Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) related expansions, and he announced the grand re-opening of Lorenzi Park scheduled for the last Saturday in June 2009.
When he began hosting neighborhood meetings in 2008 many of the concerns were related to graffiti abatement and the overall appearance of our community. Through Councilman Barlow’s efforts to rid the community of trash, glass and debris, the Clean Ward 5 Campaign was initiated. As a result, Councilman Barlow is pleased to announce that graffiti is down 80 percent and significant crime has also been reduced.
Councilman Barlow looks forward to seeing you at the next series of town hall meetings and neighborhood cleanups to discuss your concerns and ideas for Ward 5. We thank you for your significant involvement and continued support.
NEIGHBORHOOD MEETING TAKES PLACE FOR THE D STREET AND WILSON STREET RECONFIGURATION
At their Jan. 20, meeting, the City Council approved Councilman Barlow’s motion to hold in abeyance a supplemental interlocal contract between the city of Las Vegas and the Regional Transportation Commission. The contract pertains to the reconfiguration of D Street and Wilson Street to provide access to Grand Central Parkway and Interstate 15.
On Wed., Jan. 28, the Las Vegas City Council and Councilman Barlow hosted a neighborhood meeting at Doolittle Community Center to discuss the proposed reconfiguration.
The meeting was an overwhelming success, and we received positive community feedback in support of the reconfiguration of D Street and Wilson. This support from the community allowed the City Council and Councilman Barlow to accept the inter-local contract with the Regional Transportation Commission that will allow D Street to remain open.
SIERRA OESTE NEIGHBORHOOD CLEANUP
On April 4, Councilman Barlow’s staff and Neighborhood Services assisted the Sierra Oeste community with a very successful neighborhood cleanup thanks to the help of numerous volunteers. Staff from the Starbucks at Rancho and Bonanza drives and more than 50 youth volunteers from the Alpha Men and Divas of Tomorrow Youth Program, UNLV students who are members of the Nu Alpha Kappa fraternity, and even Harlem, New York, high school students collected excess debris, painted red curbs and yellow fire hydrants, painted the entire perimeter block wall and even repainted parking stalls on each four-plex property. The mood was fantastic, the weather was permitting and having residents and property owners assisting was the exact spirit we want for all neighborhood cleanups. As you recall, Councilman Barlow initiated the Clean Ward 5 Campaign which helps Ward 5 remain free of trash, glass and debris and also rid the walls of graffiti. Thanks to the collaboration of volunteers, youth organizations and business partners such as Starbucks, Councilman Barlow has made a difference in this community. The momentum of these philanthropic efforts will help give this community an additional push to rebuild its character.
SECOND ANNUAL ART CONTEST – “WHAT PEACE MEANS TO ME”
The city of Las Vegas Neighborhood Services Department and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Bolden Area Command teamed up as part of the Operation Lasting Peace initiative and asked elementary school students to draw a picture about what peace means to them.
This contest was a great collaborative effort between the Clark County School District, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and the city of Las Vegas to hear what younger students feel about peace in their lives. More than 900 students from Matt Kelly, Kermit Booker and Wendell Williams elementary schools participated. The art submitted demonstrated the youth’s positive feelings about their families, friends and community. Councilman Barlow honored the winners and runners-up at the Feb. 4, council meeting.
All of the student’s art is being displayed as part of an exhibit at the West Las Vegas Art Center located at 947 Lake Mead Blvd.
OPERATION LASTING PEACE RESOURCE FAIR
Operation Lasting Peace in partnership with the Nevada Youth Alliance, Las Vegas-Clark County Urban League and the Goshen Community Coalition hosted a Community Resource Fair on Feb. 28, at Matt Kelly Elementary School. Area residents were given information about available resources ranging from adult education, health and wellness programs, youth activities, financial planning and much, much more. Food, games and music were also provided to those attending. More than 500 residents participated.
OMEGA PSI PHI FRATERNITY TEAMS UP WITH BERKLEY SQUARE NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION NEIGHBORHOOD BEAUTIFICATION PROJECT
Omega Psi Phi Fraternity has adopted the historic Berkley Square Neighborhood in West Las Vegas through the Adopt-A-Block program. The Adopt-A-Block program is designed to aid citizens in maintaining their neighborhoods in partnership with the city of Las Vegas Neighborhood Services Department.
Through the Adopt a Block program, residents and their neighbors can begin to make a difference in the way their community looks. This program is open to all groups including businesses, organizations, schools, churches, neighborhood associations and/or civic groups. By collaborating with the Neighborhood Services Department, a safer, cleaner community can be achieved that promotes neighborhood pride and community livability. The program is based on a partnership, which requires time and commitment from all parties.
On Feb. 21, the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity teamed up with Berkley Square and participated in a beautification project. Approximately 35 volunteers from the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Omega Gents, Omega Prospects and the Nevada Department of Corrections Youth Boot Camp removed debris and weeds, painted fire hydrants and red curbs in the community. The beautification project is one of several ongoing projects to assist with Councilman Barlow’s Clean Ward 5 campaign.
DOOLITTLE COMMUNITY CENTER PET FAIR
Nearly 300 residents benefited from a free pet fair, held on a recent Saturday morning. Owners and their cats and dogs attended the event offered by the city of Las Vegas Department of Detention and Enforcement. Although the pet fair was scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. most arrived by 8:30 to take advantage of the many services provided.
People traded stories about their pets, some took pictures and everyone was grateful for the opportunity to provide their pet with the much needed vaccinations. There was a dog obedience demonstration, free rabies vaccinations and sign-ups for free spay/neutering.
Thank you to Clark County Animal Control, the Lied Animal Shelter, Heaven Can Wait and the Las Vegas Valley Humane Society for joining Councilman Barlow at the Doolittle Pet Fair!
AMERICAN MALES MAKING A DIFFERENCE
On Feb. 18, Councilman Barlow hosted an event in conjunction with the Las Vegas-Clark County Urban League at City Hall to celebrate Black History Month entitled “African-American Males Making a Difference.” In conferring with youth and educators, Councilman Barlow was concerned about the limited exposure and access that young black males have to successful and talented community leaders.
Fifty African-American elementary and high school students from Ward 5 were invited to participate in “African-American Males Making a Difference” so they could connect with community leaders who would be influential in helping them envision a brighter future.
Their morning began in the Council Chambers for the City Council meeting. A select few sat on the dais with Councilman Barlow, Mayor Oscar B. Goodman and other members of the City Council. Following the meeting, they toured City Hall with a final destination to the Human Resources training rooms where they were special guests at a luncheon with their mentors for the day.
Councilman Barlow extends his heartfelt thanks to the community leaders who took the time out of their busy schedules to share their experiences, expertise and wisdom with the young men.
NEW CITY WEB PAGE ALLOWS EASY ACCESS TO INMATE INFORMATION
The city of Las Vegas is working to make information about inmates at the city of Las Vegas Detention Center more easily accessible. A new Web page, www.lasvegasnevada.gov/inmate, allows searches by name or inmate identification number.
The search function will save those seeking information about an inmate from having to make a phone call or a trip to the city of Las Vegas Detention Center, located at 3300 Stewart Ave. It is part of the city’s award winning Web site that is designed to help serve the public more conveniently online rather than in line.
The search function allows access to the inmate’s booking date, identification number and description. Once a user finds the inmate they are looking for they will also find convenient links to information about visiting hours, placing money on an inmate’s books, legal visits and property release.