Recognize Orlando City Soccer
Commissioners, I am excited today to have members of our
Championship Orlando City Soccer team here today. On Saturday,
September 7, in front of a record-breaking crowd, the Orlando City
Lions beat the Charlotte Eagles to bring a second championship to
Orlando. The atmosphere at the game was unbelievable, the fans were
there early and were loud the entire game.
In just three years since Orlando City came to Orlando, they have
won two championships and have the best record in the league.
Congratulations to Orlando City Soccer.
Remembering Chase Smith
It is with a sad and heavy heart that I share the news of the
passing of former City employee, Chase Smith. Chase lost his battle
with lymphoma cancer on August 28 and will be deeply missed. Chase
was aide to Commissioner Sheehan for seven years before taking a
position with Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs.
Please join my Veterans Advisory Council on Wednesday, September
18, at 10 a.m. for the POW-MIA Recognition Ceremony conducted by the
University of Central Florida Air Force ROTC Detachment 159 cadets
in the rotunda of City Hall.
I want to thank the council members who will
attend the ceremony and encourage you all to be a part of this
moving tribute where we pledge to never forget our prisoners of war
and those who are still missing in action.
This weekend, we are officially opening the Eola House at Lake
Eola Park. The Eola House is located on the southeast corner of the
park and will serve as the main office for Lake Eola Park as well as
a welcome center for the City of Orlando. The welcome center will
feature history about Orlando, local art, information on nearby
points of interest and a gift shop.
The house is also Orlando’s newest venue for meetings, weddings and
receptions. It includes an upstairs balcony patio, two conference or
meeting rooms and a bride’s room.
Commissioner Sheehan and I invite everyone out to our community open
house on Sunday, September 22, from noon - 4pm. Come tour the house,
learn about our swans and enjoy entertainment and family friendly
activities on the newly expanded east lawn. This is a free event.
CityofOrlando.net for parking
Take Heart Orlando
Also, this weekend, Commissioner Stuart and I will host our
first community ‘hands only” CPR training with the Orlando Fire
Department in College Park as part of the City’s Take Heart Orlando
Our goal with Take Heart Orlando is to train every
Orlando resident in “hands only” CPR and ensure Orlando has the
highest cardiac save rate in America.
This event is the first of many community training
sessions we will host in the months and years ahead.
Please join us on Saturday, September 21, at
Edgewater High School. For more information and to register, please
And speaking of the Orlando Fire Department, I’d like to
recognize Chief Chad Williamson who has been with the Orlando Fire
Department for more than 19 years.
Williamson is being promoted to the Fire Support
Services Bureau, supporting the activities of Fire Training,
Communications, ISO, Accreditation, Emergency Management and
Technology Management liaison.
For the past seven years he has served as a Chief
Officer and has led or been involved in many critical OFD programs
and projects. Congratulations Chief Williamson.
Items of Note
Renewal of Main Streets
Today, the City will renew its annual Orlando Main Street program
agreements with the Audubon Park Garden District, College Park
Partnership, Downtown South, Ivanhoe Village, Mills50, Church Street
District, Semoran Business Partnership and Thornton Park District.
This year, five of Orlando’s Main Streets – the Audubon Park Garden
District, College Park Partnership, Downtown South, Ivanhoe Village
and Mills 50 achieved National Accreditation status.
Since the program’s inception four years ago, the Orlando Main
Street program has seen the following successes within its eight
- The opening of 419 new and 23 expanded businesses.
The creation of 2,424 jobs, both full and part-time.
The investment of more than 40,280 volunteer hours. These hours
are worth more than $850,260 according to the Bureau of Labor
The investment of nearly $137 million in improvements.
Congratulations to the Main Street Districts that have achieved
national accreditation, and I wish all of our Main Street districts
continued success in the coming year.
On today’s agenda is a Small Business Façade grant for what will
be the new home of the Russian Academy of Ballet. The grant will
provide new glass, new planters, cornice moldings and fresh paint
for this property in our Mills 50 Main Street District. In addition,
the property owner is also investing more than $100,000 towards
We always look forward to seeing the finished products of our façade
program recipients. The improvements made by these commercial
property and business owners with funding from the City of Orlando
make an incredible impact on our commercial landscape and are one of
the many reasons Orlando is one of the best places in the nation to
start and run a small business.
Orlando Police Department Grants
Commissioners, as you know today we are having our first budget
hearing at 5:01 p.m. I am proud of the hard work our staff continues
to do to help us stretch every dollar and continue to change a
culture of spending, into one of saving.
On today’s agenda is another great example of that hard work as we
have three different grants for our public safety efforts.
- $5,000 from the National Association of Drug Diversion
Investigators has been awarded for outstanding work in the field
of prescription drug abuse enforcement. These funds will be used
to increase the enforcement and/or education of the prescription
drug abuse problem in the City of Orlando.
- Another $5,000 has been awarded from Target’s Public Safety
Grant program. The funds will be used for Orlando Police
Department's (OPD) Operation
Positive Direction initiative for mentoring, educational
activities and community service projects involving local youth
and OPD volunteers.
- A third grant for $5,000 comes from Target’s Heroes and
Helpers Program. Funds will be provided in the form of Target
Gift Cards for shopping events to benefit at-risk youth
participating in OPD's Positive Direction program.