Just this last week, our District 4 City Commissioner Patty Sheehan was recognized as Harbor House of Central Florida’s Champion of Equality.
Congratulations Commissioner Sheehan and thank you for the important work you do in helping us to work towards ending domestic violence.
This important recognition comes during the month of October, which is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and reminds us all that we all have a role to play when it comes to ending domestic violence.
Irma & Maria Updates
It’s been several weeks since Hurricane Irma made landfall in Orlando and Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.
Here in Orlando, our crews and contractors have been working tirelessly and have removed more than 60% of the debris caused by the storm.
We have completed our first pass of debris collection in every residential area and our contractors are moving into the second phase of the collection.
Restoring our beautiful city remains a team effort between our residents, city crews, and debris contractors. Please continue to bring your debris to the curb and bag loose debris such as leaves and small branches that remain after large piles have been removed.
Residents can get updated debris collection information on our website at cityoforlando.net/debris.
In our efforts to help Puerto Rican and U.S. Virgin Island families displaced by Hurricane Maria, our satellite Hispanic Office for Local Assistance (HOLA) in the airport continues to connect evacuees with more than 100 government and community organizations to find jobs, housing, healthcare services, and other resources.
Since its inception, the HOLA Office at the relief center has assisted 2,335 individuals and 822 families and will continue operating from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week until Monday, November 6, 2017.
For more information about HOLA services and other resources in our community for newcomers, please visit Cityoforlando.net/hola.
Items of Note
Next week, starting on the October 28, we will celebrate Mobility week.
This week’s Council agenda includes several items that will help continue to add to our transportation options and enhance the safety of pedestrians and cyclists, including:
- funding for a Kirkman Road Multi-Use Trail
- approval of a pedestrian bridge at Orange Avenue and Gore Street as part of the Crescent Lucerne project
- a grant for OPD from the FDOT for its campaign to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety
- and a funding agreement between the City and Bike/Walk Central Florida to continue our ongoing commitment to Best Foot Forward.
Mayor Buddy Dyer reminded everyone to join him next Friday, November 3, for our annual Bike to Work Day. He’ll be riding from Festival Park to City Hall.
Orlando’s Poet Laureate
City Council approved the appointment of the city’s first Poet Laureate.
In July the search began for Orlando’s official storyteller, who will promote an appreciation of poetry among residents and inspire new generations of literary artists and readers of literature.
Mayor Dyer thanked the United Arts of Central Florida and Burrow Press, who the city partnered with to develop the qualifications for the position and then assisted during the search process. And Mayor Dyer recognized the city’s Poet Laureate Selection Committee for their efforts to review the 49 applications.
Susan Lilley, a teacher and published poet, has been selected and is being appointed the ceremonial position. Susan is a University of Central Florida graduate whose love of literature stems from early in her education at our community’s public schools.
Mayor Dyer offered congratulations and thanks in advance for Susan’s commitment to telling Orlando’s story and promoting the literary arts in our community as our city’s first Poet Laureate.
Renewal of Main Streets
City Council approved the renewal agreements for the City’s nine Main Streets.
Our Main Streets program, which will celebrate its tenth anniversary in 2018, has brought tremendous benefits to our community, including nearly 6,000 new full and part time jobs, 975 new businesses and more than $1 billion in investment.
Not only are our Main Streets economic engines, they are also our favorite places to dine, be entertained and gather together. Each adds to our quality of life with great events, infrastructure turned into artwork and a unique sense of place.
This year, the City is changing our funding model just slightly, which allows an opportunity for districts to get an additional $25,000 than in years past. In years past, for districts that have been in the program five or more years, the district would receive $25,000. This year, the City will match the funds raised by the district up to $50,000 which we hope will allow the districts to grow and contribute even more.
Mayor Dyer acknowledged the Main Street managers, board members and staff for all they do to contribute to our authentic community. The City is pleased to continue to partner with Main Streets to strengthen our neighborhoods.
Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute QTI
Council heard a resolution to support the creation of 30 new high-quality jobs at the Johnson and Johnson Human Performance Institute in Lake Nona.
Johnson and Johnson is looking to expand the footprint of its leadership development and training center operations, and in addition to Orlando, is considering California, Texas and Arizona for this expansion project.
We are honored Orlando is being considered for this expansion and would welcome Johnson and Johnson’s additional investment in our community.