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Sustainability Newsletter

June 2016 Sustainability Newsletter

Blue Ocean Sponsors July 4 Celebration

Blue Ocean Enterprises, Blue Ocean Foundation, and the Richardson Foundation will once again sponsor the City’s annual 4th of July community celebration. The generous support from these organizations will help fund popular community events on the 4th of July, including a morning parade on Mountain Avenue, musical performances at City Park, and a fireworks display over Sheldon Lake at City Park in the evening. See a full list of activities. 

Save on "Clean" Lawn Care, Equipment

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The City is offering up to $50 in rebates to help with the purchase of new lawn and garden equipment. The annual rebates are available this year from May 1 through July 31 and can apply to items such as lawnmowers, string trimmers, edgers, chain saws and more when they’re purchased from participating local vendors.

The rebates come in three variations and help people save when they buy eligible “clean” lawn and garden equipment, purchase and recycle a properly drained gas powered lawnmower, or purchase a season of “clean” lawn care from Clean Air Lawn Care. The rebate program is one of many that the City offers to work toward our air quality and climate action plan goals which include reducing community carbon emission by 20 percent by 2020 compared to our 2005 levels. See a full description of the program.

Mayor Issues Proclamation for LGBTQ Pride Month

Mayor Wade Troxell on June 21 proclaimed June 2016 as LGBTQ Pride Month. The proclamation recognizes the contributions of the LGBTQ community in Fort Collins; the expansion of inclusive policies and resources at Colorado State University, Poudre School District, and the City of Fort Collins; and the legalization of same-sex marriage last year.

The proclamation also emphasizes the importance of making Fort Collins a safe and inclusive community for all people.

“In the aftermath of the tragic shooting in Orlando, our Fort Collins community reaches out to the victims, families, loved ones and the entire Orlando community to offer our deepest sympathies and to extend our support to Orlando,” said Mayor Troxell. “Last night’s proclamation reinforces our resolve that everyone matters, that Fort Collins is an inclusive place for everyone, and that our LGBTQ friends and neighbors feel both safe and welcome here.”

In May 2016, the City of Fort Collins formed an LGBTQ+ task force comprised of City staff and two community liaisons. The goal of the task force is to ensure Fort Collins’ LGBTQ+ community is safe, valued and affirmed within the city organization and community at large.

Future of Landfill? Take a Survey

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Larimer County and its communities have created a short survey to gather input about the habits and values of County residents related to solid waste. The 5- to 7-minute survey is open through the end of July 2016.

A Regional Wasteshed Coalition, made up of elected officials and staff from the City of Fort Collins, City of Loveland, Town of Estes Park, and Larimer County, is seeking help from residents to address the future of solid waste management. Take the survey.

Questions focus on how respondents dispose of garbage, recyclables, food scraps and yard trimmings at home, but also enquire about attitudes and motivations. Results from the survey will be incorporated into a series of facilitated public forums, scheduled throughout the County in September. A follow-up survey is likely in early 2017.

The survey is also available in Spanish.

City Begins Northside Revitalization Brownfield Assessment

The City of Fort Collins has begun the initial phases of the Northside Revitalization project, an Area-wide Brownfield Assessment effort funded through a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that was awarded to the City in late 2015.

Fort Collins was one of 15 communities or counties to receive $4.8 million in Region 8 funding through the EPA’s Brownfields Assessment and Cleanup grant competition.

Brownfield sites include properties previously used for industrial or commercial activities that may have been environmentally impacted by such activities as auto repair and servicing; petroleum retail sales and dry cleaning. Read more.

Mayor Pro-Tem Re-Appointed to Regional Air Quality Council

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Governor John Hickenlooper has reappointed Mayor Pro-Tem Gerry Horak to a second term as an elected official representing Larimer County on the Denver Metropolitan Regional Air Quality Council or RAQC.

The Regional Air Quality Council, created in 1989, serves as the lead air quality planning agency for the Denver area. In 2013, Hickenlooper identified the RAQC as the lead air quality planning agency for the Denver area and the Denver Metro/North Front Range Ozone Non-Attainment Area, with goals of reducing regional ozone levels.

The City promotes, protects and enhances a healthy and sustainability environment partly through monitoring local and regional air quality and supporting programs that improve air quality. City staff members work with the RAQC on ozone outreach efforts, and local programs to reduce ozone-causing emissions such as promoting use of electric lawn and garden equipment. City Council has adopted Climate Action Plan goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 20 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 80 percent by 2030 with a goal to be carbon neutral by 2050. 

Outreach Fort Collins in Service

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Outreach Fort Collins, a multi-agency support network Downtown that includes support from the City of Fort Collins, has hired Nick Verni-Lau as program supervisor, Lisa Dunworth as behavioral health clinician and Emily Harms as outreach worker. The three are working Downtown offering community referrals for people in need of support services and assist with street conflicts that currently pull emergency responders away from their primary task of maintaining public safety. Within the first few weeks of the program, they had already made more than 50 contacts.

In 2014, a group of Fort Collins’ community stewards including the City, business owners, and service providers formed a task force to examine the complicated issue of disruptive behaviors that negatively affect Downtown. Their goal was to fully understand the various root causes disruptive behaviors, listen to the needs of the community, and craft a thoughtful solution for everyone involved. The task force crafted a local program built from the best pieces of many programs across the nation. For more about Outreach Fort Collins, go to www.outreachfortcollins.org.
 

Climate Action Pact Forged in U.S.-China Summit

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Fort Collins Mayor Wade Troxell and Utilities Director Kevin Gertig visited their U.S. and Chinese counterparts June 7-9 as part of a China-U.S. Smart Cities/Low Carbon Summit aimed at strengthening a joint commitment to climate action, Troxell was one of 22 U.S. Mayors and more than 45 Chinese Mayors attending the summit in Beijing along with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and U.S. Ambassador to China Max Baucus. Troxell was a presenter at the summit where he talked about Fort Collins’ Climate Action Plan focusing on innovative solutions in a market-based economy. The city's CAP framework aims for cutting carbon emissions 20 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 with a goal of being carbon neutral by 2050. Read more information about the visit.
 

Etc.

August 31 is the deadline to register for the 2016 Multicultural Retreat, which will take place at the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park September 24-25. Cost is $55 and full and partial scholarships are available. Register via the Recreator (activity number 430901-01). If you do not already have an account, you will need to create one. The retreat is hosted by the City of Fort Collins Social Sustainability Department, Colorado State University, Front Range Community College, Fort Collins Community Action Network (FCCAN), Poudre School District, Diversity Solutions Group, and community members.