City of Fresno To Double Streetlight Repair Staffing;  Most Repairs Expected to be Completed Within Six Months
07/26/2013
 Fresno, CA – City of Fresno officials today said staffing for streetlight repairs will be doubled beginning Monday, July 29, and estimated that most of the City’s streetlights should be repaired by the end of the year.

City Manager Bruce Rudd said that part of Mayor Swearengin’s FY14 Budget included funding for 10 temporary electricians, who have already been hired to make the necessary streetlight repairs. Crews will be sent to areas in teams to address all lighting repairs at once, and two electricians will be assigned as a strike team to handle other urgent assignments.

“Recognizing the public safety issues that broken streetlights create in our community, the Mayor has made it clear that one of her top priorities for the upcoming year was getting our streetlights repaired as soon a possible,” Rudd said.

The Mayor’s FY14 budget reallocates $1 million in transportation funds originally earmarked to match various traffic synchronization projects to fund the needed repairs. The traffic synchronization projects will still be completed, but will be deferred for one year in order to fund the street light repairs. The funding that is being reallocated can only be used for transportation-related projects.

Approximately 2,880 of the City’s 42,000 streetlights need to be repaired, Public Works Director Patrick Wiemiller said. Of that total, 1,100 require repairs because of wire theft. Crews may find additional wire theft during the repair project, and completion of the project will depend on how much additional wire theft is discovered, he added.

Rudd also commended Councilmembers Steve Brandau and Paul Caprioglio for personally taking steps to address the streetlight issue. Over the past several months, Brandau and Caprioglio have combined to repair a total of 300 streetlights in their respective districts.

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