February 28, 2014
I hope you had a Happy Valentine's Day and enjoyed President's Day as well.
This newsletter chronicles just a few of the issues and projects occurring in Ward 3. Traffic in and around road closures due to construction continues to be a challenge. Please plan extra time into your trips as we have many construction projects going on in Ward 3. The 91 freeway at Arlington and at Central continue to change frequently with ramp closures lasting a week to 10 days at a time. Riverside Avenue between Elizabeth and Merrill is now fully closed until the new Railroad grade separation is completed. Elizabeth Street is now forever closed just west of Riverside Avenue. City crews will be working with railroad maintenance to remove tumbleweeds and weeds along the railroad right-of-way at Jane Street and west of Arlington. They will also repair fence openings and remove dumped debris. We are working with City Staff to repair damaged fencing and to increase fencing along railroad right-of-ways to prevent unauthorized crossing - thus increasing pedestrian safety.
Panhandlers and street people who are violating our City's ordinances and state law continue to be a problem. This has become an economic, social and safety issue. Aggressive panhandling is generating many calls to our police department. Please know that City staff is working on a type of "Livability Task Force" that will develop plans for curbing aggressive panhandling. These plans will be presented to City Council within the next few weeks, and should pull all City departments together to better tackle the problem. I am fully committed to seeing a reduction in the number of aggressive panhandlers plaguing our City and will not give up on this.
Construction on the final phase of our City's railroad "Quiet Zones" will be starting in the next few months and should be completed by mid or late summer (RR line along Indiana Avenue). In addition, we have made other requests to City staff regarding traffic signal timing, additional safety signage and other traffic safety improvements throughout the Ward.
We will soon be asking City Council to examine our City's tree program related to City owned trees in parkways. One suggestion is to give "ownership" of these trees to the homeowners over a set period of time and with City assistance to remove nuisance trees (root invasion problems, sidewalk damage, etc.).
I am mindful that I work for our residents and keep your best interests in the forefront of each decision I make on your behalf. I am always available for your call or email. If you use Facebook, you can follow my "Councilman Mike Soubirous" page to keep up on things affecting Ward 3. Oh, and please - don't forget to shop Riverside when you can - it is vitally important to our City's ability to provide quality services to you. Wishing you the best always.
Caltrans will shut down the westbound Arlington Avenue onramp and the eastbound Central Avenue onramp to Highway 91 for 10 days starting Monday, Feb. 24.
The work is part of the ongoing Highway 91 widening project. The Arlington ramp will be closed from 9 p.m. Feb. 24 to 9 p.m. March 6, and the Central ramp will be closed on the same dates starting and ending at 10 p.m.
Bad weather could cause the work to be postponed. Project details and information on upcoming closures are available at www.caltrans8.info.
Students in Riverside will join millions of their peers across the country to celebrate the sixteenth annual National Education Association's (NEA) Read Across America Day onMonday, March 3, 2014.
NEA's Read Across America Day, which celebrates Dr. Seuss's birthday and the joys of reading, expects more than 45 million readers, both young and old, to pick up a book and read.
To honor the good doctor and celebrate the fun and value of reading, I have joined the NEA and many of America's leading literacy, youth, and civic groups in bringing a nation of readers together under one hat ~ the red and white stovepipe made famous by the Cat in the Hat ~ for a flurry (or furry) of reading excitement! I read to a great group of students at Jefferson Elementary School on February 28th.
For more information on NEA's Read Across America, visit www.nea.org/readacross and www.readacrossamerica.org and learn of other reading celebrations that are happening from coast to coast.
Jesus S. Duran, pictured, of Riverside will receive the Medal of Honor award March 18, along with World War II veteran Salvador J. Lara, also of Riverside, and 22 other Army veterans.
The Congressional Medal of Honor is the nation’s highest award for military valor. First authorized in 1861, the year the Civil War began. First awarded to Navy sailors and Marines. Army soldiers included the following year. More than 3,400 have been awarded to members of all branches of the military.
President awards medal in name of Congress to an armed service member who “distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her own life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in action against an enemy of the United States.
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