Biannual

20 Mar 19
The E'ville Eye Community News

The City of Emeryville held two council meeting during the month of January. Among the highlights that emerged from these meetings were the updated goals and priorities for fiscal year 2019-2020 as well as ongoing project discussions. Council discussed a Senior or possibly “Intergenerational” housing project on the land currently occupied by the Robert Savage […]

20 Mar 19
WTVR.com

Church Hill Irish Festival & Taste of India

20 Mar 19
Chiaroscuro Zeitgeist

A 22 year old student predicted in 1962 the mathematical relationships for the current and voltage across a weak link coupling two or more superconductors. Since then the world of superconductivity has never looked back. That monumental achievement in the Cavendish laboratory not only made Brian Josephson the only Welshman in history to win the Nobel […]

20 Mar 19
Northern Virginia Small Business Marketing

Secure your future with the best immigration lawyers in Fairfax Virginia The high school students were wobbling, struggling to keep their balance and, in some cases, to push their wheelchair-bound friend down the hall without crashing. And they did it in front of a bunch of cops. The students at Langley High School in Fairfax […]

20 Mar 19
Megan's Adventures

Last week was the biannual bird-catch at the London Wetland Centre, where birds are caught from their enclosures and seen by the visiting vet. This requires a lot of planning and foresight from contacting and organizing volunteers for the event to prepping the vet area (the Lodge) with equipment and supplies. Tuesday we prepped for […]

20 Mar 19
Twin Cities
Acknowledging that there’s already a sizable gap in his budget, Metro Transit’s new general manager is touting a series of new initiatives to improve the “rider experience” on trains and buses — from focused enforcement to more daytime cleaning to an “anti-harassment” campaign promoting random acts of kindness. Under its new police chief, Metro Transit has already stepped up fare checks — since January requiring even administrative officers to go out on patrol, and street officers to spend less time in their cars. Metro Transit general manager Wes Kooistra Since the beginning of the year, citations have quadrupled on the Green Line, and arrests have jumped 250 percent, Metro Transit general manager Wes Kooistra said Tuesday. Kooistra said he wants that enhanced enforcement to continue, focusing on areas with high infraction rates such as the Green Line from the state Capitol to the University of Minnesota, and the Payne Avenue bus route to Maplewood Mall. It’s one of a smorgasbord of improvements Kooistra says he’s willing to dip into his organization’s reserves to pay for — and is hoping state lawmakers will in time address the shortfall. Kooistra, who has been in his position for six weeks, complained that his organization was too reliant on one-time appropriations, and touted Gov. Tim Walz’s proposed 1/8-cent metro area sales tax increase that would go toward the area’s bus system. When asked about the possibility that the money request might create brinksmanship with the state Legislature, as it often has in the past, Kooistra said, “Every biannual, it’s an act of faith no matter where you are. … We have to show the need, and the Legislature has to respond to that need.” A LOOK AT THE AGENCY’S BUDGET Metro Transit’s 2018 budget allowed for $472 million in expenses and included $464 million in revenue – equating to an $8 million deficit that would be drawn from Metro Transit’s “rainy day” reserve. The new initiatives would add an additional $1.5 million to $2 million in expenses to that gap. With a reserve of about $55 million, transit officials say they will run out of savings sometime in 2024. But Kooistra maintained that his organization has held off on spending what it needed to for years. He cited one statistic relating to maintenance: There were quadruple the number of rail breaks this winter, compared with a typical year. Yes, it was a tough winter, but his agency should be able to deal with tough winters, he said. WHAT ABOUT SERVICE AND RIDER EXPERIENCE? Kooistra’s initiative also seeks to double the staff – from three to six – working at the organization’s “transit control center,” which responds to texts from travelers about observed infractions and puts out rider alerts. “Uh oh, we got a smoker,” said Cain Brewer, the single staff member on his shift at the call center Tuesday, patching a customer’s report to police. “This is easily the most common problem, especially this time of year.” Since the text-based assistance program launched in 2017, daily calls have increased from six to an average of 26 in February, though at times can reach 50, Brewer said. “Right now, we just don’t have a lot of time to explain a lot of stuff (to customers),” Brewer said. [related_articles location=”right” show_article_date=”false” article_type=”automatic-primary-tag”] To offer a carrot rather than a stick, Kooistra’s “anti-harassment” campaign would allow officers and drivers who witness acts of “respect, kindness and inclusion” to reward them. The campaign — which appears to be in its planning stages — could include events and presentations, prompted by drivers or officers handing appreciation cards to those they see acting kindly. IMPROVEMENTS TO APPS, CLEANING, ACCESS Kooistra’s initiative would also: Increase the number of cleaners working during regular routes, as opposed to when trains are out of service, from one to four. Upgrade Metro Transit’s 10-year-old information system that puts out real-time route data to the organization’s apps, station signs and the customer call-in system. Make Americans with Disabilities Act improvements at 15 transit centers.
20 Mar 19
Brandon Hogan

Permalink to published article. On Thursday 27 clubs and their highest ranking members took on crowds of curious students at Valencia’s latest Club Rush on East Campus. The local Student Government Association organizes and schedules the event every semester as a part of Welcome Back Week, a time for students to prepare for another four months at school, […]