By Councilor Jim Duncan
I had the pleasure of substituting for Councilor Amy Lafayette as the City Council Liaison to the Safe, Healthy, Connected People Commission which is charged with helping Council and staff “foster relationships across generations and cultures by providing a safe and healthy environment and providing opportunities to connect and engage with other residents of the City”.
The SHCP Commission met on August 11th to reconnect and hear updates from the Fire and Community Services departments.
The Fire Department has been playing a critical role in managing the local impacts of the pandemic and the work the City and community have done to take health measures seriously has led to no new cases in Winooski in 28 days (as of the meeting), an end to the outbreak in the City, and a full return of City staff from furlough. The Department has also been able to hire and onboard three new part-time firefighters while maintaining their working relationship with students from St. Michaels. Commission members also discussed several air pollution-related complaints related to properties in the City, and we remind residents you can now submit housing complaint forms online at https://www.winooskivt.gov/353/Minimum-Housing-Resources.
The Community Services Department has been keeping up many services through the pandemic despite experiencing some turnover, including the opening of community gardens, book circulation, meal delivery, the initiation of a youth interventionist position and a successful summer Thrive program for kids K through 5. Enrollment for 2020-2021 Thrive After School is now open: https://www.winooskivt.gov/thrive.
Two AmeriCorps positions will be filled soon, the process for hiring a new library director is close to an end, and the City just announced hiring for a Recreational Programs Manager and a Parks and Community Gardens Manager. To view these jobs and apply, please visit https://www.winooskivt.gov/jobs. In addition, the Commission heard more details about the plan to delay the opening of the Myers Memorial Pool until next year.
The Safe, Healthy, Connected People Commission meets on the 2nd Tuesday of each month and meetings are open to the public. The next meeting will take place on September 8th at 6:30 PM.
Please get in touch with the Council Liaison if you have any input or questions on the work of the Commission – Amy Lafayette, firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about the Safe, Healthy, Connected People Commission and how to get involved, please visit https://www.winooskivt.gov/227/Safe-Healthy-Connected-People-Commission.