We had our first meeting on Tuesday, May 1st for Environment, Agriculture and Natural Resources (EANR) standing committee. Our meetings will be held twice a month on Thursdays when County Board meetings are not in session. The meetings will run back-to-back with the Land Conservation Committee (LCC), and will be held at the Lyman F. Anderson Agriculture & Conservation Center located at 5201 Fen Oak Drive. Meetings are open to the public.
I will dedicate a separate blog entry detailing the work of the LCC, and how it helps provide conservation planning assistance and technical services in the area of soil and water conservation to the landowners, land users, and decision-makers of Dane County.
I am happy to report that I was elected as Secretary to both committees. Currently these meetings are not recorded. I am looking forward to trying some approaches to recording and posting the audio from these meetings. Once I have a process in place with good audio, I will report back with more details and links.
In the EANR meeting, we unanimously approved an Urban Water Quality Grant Award to the City of Madison in the amount of $615,000. This partnership between the city and county will create a retention pond near East Towne Mall to keep thousands of pounds of sediment and phosphorous out of our lakes. This retention pond will collect run-off from 196 acres of streets and parking lots in the surrounding commercial and residential areas. The County is paying for 75% of the project, and the city is paying for 25%.
Meetings, Events and Neighborhood News
- The Public, Protection and Judiciary (PPJ) committee will meet at the City County Building at 5:15 on Tuesday, May 8th. Immediately following the meeting there will be a tour of the Dane County Jail, which I will be attending. Although I don't serve on PPJ, I plan to work closely with my colleagues on criminal justice issues and particularly on reducing racial disparities in our criminal justice system.
- I just returned from an AtwoodFest planning meeting. AtwoodFest is a fun two-day festival on Atwood Ave. on July 28th and 29th. There will be two days of solid music, a KidsFest within the festival, and a makers market where people of all ages can experiment with cool DIY tech and enjoy video games and a DJ. This is in addition to a community art project and convergence parade. AtwoodFest (along with all of our neighborhood festivals) is volunteer-run by people like you. Here is a link to volunteer at AtwoodFest (volunteers are needed for bartending shifts Saturday night and for KidsFest):
In future updates, I will feature other neighborhood festivals and events.
- This Saturday, May 12th there will be A Rally for a Coal Free Community from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. at McPike Park (formerly Central Park). There will be a teach-in, march and rally. I will be one of the speakers at the rally. The event is kid-friendly, and it would be great to see you there:
- The annual Compost Bin and Rain Barrel Truckload sale is this Saturday May 12 from 10:00 AM to 2 PM at the Alliant Energy Center. Compost keeps organic waste out of our landfill and Rain Barrels help keep Dane County more sustainable while keeping our lakes clean. Check it out:
Thanks for taking the time to read these updates, and I look forward to seeing you around the neighborhood.