This Week at City Hall - Poet Laureate Selection Committee
City Members Seeking Members for Poet Laureate Selection Committee
The City of Fresno is seeking seven members to serve on a committee to select Fresno’s first Poet Laureate.  City Council last week approved a resolution advanced by Mayor Swearengin establishing the honorary position of Fresno Poet Laureate.
Members of the selection committee are expected to have expertise in literary arts, education or media and be a current resident of Fresno or work in the City.  Committee members will be appointed by Mayor Swearengin and confirmed by City Council.
Anyone interested in serving on the selection committee should visit the Boards and Commissions portion of the City’s website for additional details.
City Still Accepting Applications for Seeking Site Directors  for Federal Program
The City of Fresno is still accepting applications for two site director positions for the Building Neighborhood Capacity Program (BNCP), an effort to help low-income neighborhoods build the infrastructure and resources needed to ensure that residents experience better results around education, employment, safety, housing and other key areas. 
Each Site Director will work from one of the neighborhoods selected during the award process, El Dorado or Southwest.  To see the position announcement, click here.  Those interested in applying should prepare their resume and no more than a one-page introduction letter and submit it as outlined in the project announcement by no later than October 29, 2012. 
The City of Fresno was recently awarded a federal grant to expand its neighborhood revitalization efforts in El Dorado Park and Southwest Fresno. Through the grant, BNCP will provide intensive training and technical assistance through the Center for the Study of Social Policy to faith-based, nonprofit and community-based organizations over a period of at least 18 months to help the neighborhoods design and begin pursuing results-driven, sustainable revitalization plans.
Council to Consider Resolution Supporting Enhanced Economic Development Rate
City Council on Thursday will consider a resolution supporting PG&E’s proposal to establish an Enhanced Economic Development Rate (EEDR) that would provide economic benefits for the City and the region.  Mayor Ashley Swearengin and Councilman Larry Westerlund worked with PG&E officials for several months on developing the proposal.
PG&E earlier this year asked state regulators for the right to offer a competitive electric rate to attract employers to California and convince other employers already in the state to maintain or expand their operations rather than leave. To be eligible for the rate, existing businesses need to be actively pursuing out of state locations or would otherwise close.
For counties in PG&E’s service area with unemployment rates at least 25 percent higher than the state average, the proposed economic development rate would create a significant rate reduction.  Eligible businesses would receive 35 percent off electric rates for five years.  
It is anticipated that food processing companies and other heavy industrial and commercial users looking to expand or locate to Fresno would have access to such a rate if approved by the PUC.  A decision is expected in April or May 2013.
The City of Fresno encouraged a coalition of 40 cities and counties to support the effort.  In addition, dozens of community and business groups, individuals and business owners throughout the state have provided support for the proposal.
Mayor Swearengin’s Activities
While some of these activities outlined below are not public meetings, these are some of the issues being addressed this week by Mayor Swearengin:
  • Meeting with our partners in the federal Strong Cities, Strong Communities program to discuss goals and priorities for the program’s second year;
  • Participating in an event with Fresno Unified officials to celebrate improving test scores at Lowell Elementary School;
  • Speaking at a Fresno Housing Authority event to celebrate homes on Park Avenue that were recently renovated in conjunction with Fresno City College students;
  • Conducting internal meetings on the General Plan Update and high-speed rail;
  • Participating in the Fresno Council of Governments monthly meeting;
  • Participating in opening night ceremonies for the Fresno Monsters.
 ‘Go Green and Clean’ at Romain Park
The “Go Clean and Green” park beautification effort will be held at Romaine Park, 745 N. First, on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 9 a.m. to noon.
In the program, volunteers participate in basic park care through litter removal, flower bed raking, pruning, painting, graffiti removal and other light tasks from 8 a.m. to noon.
Volunteers are encouraged to wear long pants, hats, gloves and sun block and bring plenty of drinking water. Basic work tools and supplies will be provided by the City of Fresno.  Each volunteer will be required to complete a volunteer form and waiver.
Follow Mayor Swearengin, City of Fresno on Twitter
For up-to-date information on happenings related to the City of Fresno, follow Mayor Swearengin on Twitter @MayorSwearengin or the City of Fresno @CityofFresno.