The Friday Staff Report to City Council provides weekly updates on various city matters. This week’s highlights include the setup of summer cooling stations, potential changes to the City’s General Fund due to fluctuating ad valorem values, and the publication of Denton Municipal Electric’s newsletter. Council member initiatives address hygiene product availability in public facilities and pedestrian safety on McKinney Street, while community events span from a Water Works Park preview to a citywide Summer Reading Challenge organized by the Denton Public Library.
During summer 2023, community-wide cooling stations, including city facilities like libraries and recreation centers, are available to offer relief from inclement weather. These stations, complemented by services from community partners, provide amenities like restrooms, water, and sitting areas. The staff ensures extended hours at these stations and continuous sharing of updates with the community.
The latest edition of Denton Municipal Electric’s (DME) quarterly newsletter, “In the Loop“, is now accessible online. It features information about the Technology Operations Division, and Compliance.
The City’s General Fund, supporting services like public safety and parks, primarily relies on sales and ad valorem taxes, with over a third of the revenue coming from the latter. Preliminary data indicates a potential 24.9% increase in ad valorem values, but historically, overall valuations tend to decrease by 10% from initial estimates to the certified roll. While sales tax revenues have been above the annual budget so far, recent months show a potential softening. Both revenue sources will continue to be closely monitored during the FY 23-24 budget development process.
The first of many traffic box wraps, partially funded by the Texas Commission on the Arts, will soon be installed in the Original Denton District. These wraps showcase artwork created by Denton Independent School District students. Subsequent installations will include art from local university students.
The Denton Public Library is seeking teen volunteers (aged 11-17) for the Summer Reading Challenge, “All Together Now!”. Volunteers will help register participants and distribute free book prizes at three library locations, earning community service hours.
• Tuesday, May 30, at the North Branch Library, beginning at 5 p.m. with no registration required.
• Wednesday, May 31, online beginning at 5 p.m. with registration required online.
Council Member Requests
Council Member McGee confirmed on May 16 that free feminine hygiene products are available in restrooms at City Hall. Staff are ensuring the availability of these products in all other City facilities accessible to the public.
Council Member McGee requested temporary barriers to safeguard pedestrians along McKinney Street between Woodrow Lane and Mockingbird Lane. Staff are examining sidewalk gaps and surveying for construction considerations, while also considering barrier options in line with MUTCD standards. The options will be discussed during the Capital Improvement Projects Budget meeting with City Council.
Mayor Hudspeth asked about the City’s efforts in capturing CO2 landfill emissions. Staff is now in the process of finding a contractor to convert landfill gas into pipeline-grade quality gas, with further details to be provided upon availability.
In response to Council Member McGee’s query about decommissioning vehicles, staff clarified that once a vehicle reaches its lifecycle end, it’s prepared for auction. The contracted auction vendor resells it and returns the proceeds to the City.
Upcoming Community Events
Water Works Park Member Preview Weekend – Water Works Park will kick off the 2023 season with a members-only weekend on May 19 and May 20. Park information, pricing, and frequently asked questions can be found online by visiting the Denton Water Works webpage.
Mean Green UNT Themed Fire Engine Push-In Ceremony – On Thursday, May 25 at 6 p.m. the Denton Fire Department will host a Wash-Down and Push-In Ceremony for the new UNT Fire Truck at Fire Station 3 (1401 Underwood St.). This ceremony reflects on the history of the fire service when a new piece of equipment would be “washed” by surrounding volunteer fire departments and then “pushed” into the fire station by the crew, since the equipment at that time was either horse drawn wagons or hand carts. The public is encouraged to attend and participate in the wash down and push in, along with photo opportunities and refreshments.
Spring Kayaking-Registration is open for the Saturday, May 27 (ages 5+) spring kayaking event, meeting and ending at Denia Recreation Center (1001 Parvin St.). Residents ages five and older are invited to join American Canoe Association assessed instructor and American Red Cross lifeguard certified staff on a kayak adventure touring a beautiful local waterway. This event is open to all skill levels and paddling experience is not required. Bring a sack lunch and a bottle of water for a picnic along with the adventure. Children between the ages of five and 11 must share a kayak with an adult, while those 12 and up can use a single kayak. The cost of the program is $25 for a single kayak and $50 for a tandem kayak. Registration for the event is available online.
Summer Reading Challenge – One, two, three, four. .. time to tum on good vibes, groovy fun, and far out reads this summer. This year’s theme is “All together now!” as staff and participants roll it back to the ’60s. Dig it with your friends, neighbors, and the Denton Public Library at this year’s Summer Reading Challenge (SRC). Tune in from June 1 to July 31 and read to earn righteous prizes.
The SRC program encourages people of all ages to challenge themselves to meet a personal reading goal, be part of a reading community, and get rewarded for their effort. Reading is the perfect summer activity for everyone from children to teens to adults. Babies and pre-readers who have books read to them can participate, too!
Register online at denton.readsquared.com. For more groovy fun, earn digital badges by attending certain library programs listed on the online calendar.
Upcoming Street Closures
|Street/Intersection||From||To||Closure Start Date||Closure End Date||Description|
|Oak St||Mounts Ave||Fulton St||06/30/23||07/28/23||Wastewater Collections will be installing new sewer main lines and services.|
|Oak St||Thomas St||Bonnie Brae St||06/08/23||06/16/23||Work on the DME substation|
|Ottawa Dr||Great Bear Ln||Wind River Ln||05/29/23||07/06/23||Street Panel and Sidewalk Repair|