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June 26th Ward 3 Newsletter: Budget & More!

Hello Friends & Neighbors,

It has been an eventful few weeks in our City! Pride, Juneteenth, Summer 1899 in North Burial Ground, Block Parties, PorchFest, and so much more! And life has been busy on the Council - so I am excited to provide this update. You can read this newsletter at: https://www.sueanderbois.com/news

Upcoming Events:

Save the Date: Ward 3 Community Meeting - July 10th at 7pm at Rochambeau Library!

We will hold our next Ward 3 Community Meeting on July 10th at 7pm at the Rochambeau Library. I will be providing an overview of the Fiscal Year 2024 budget process & details, sharing general community updates, and will be available for questions/comments/feedback!

Public Hearing Thursday June 29th: Ordinance Committee on Self-Storage Ordinance:

So many Ward 3 residents have reached out to me, concerned about the proliferation of self storage facilities across the City - especially as we are facing a housing shortage. I teamed up with Councilors Roias and Sanchez to sponsor an ordinance to update the zoning code so that these facilities aren't allowed "by right" in any zoning district -- basically that they aren't given an automatic green light in certain areas. Check out the op-ed we wrote for the Boston Globe & also come share your thoughts at the public hearing on Thursday at 5:30 in Council Chambers! You can also send written testimony to the Clerk's office at: cityclerk@providenceri.gov




Special Committee on Environment & Resilience:

On June 21rst the Director Clara Decerbo of the Providence Emergency Management Agency (and fantastic Ward 3 resident!) presented to the Special Committee on Environment and Climate Resilience about the role of PEMA and emergency management protocols and challenges in the City. Committee members dug in on questions about safety in the Port, staffing, communications with residents, and more. Check out the recording of this important conversation here.

The next meeting of the Special Committee will be on July 17th at 5:30pm.

Splash Pad at Billy Taylor Park is now open!

The Water Park area of Billy Taylor Park has re-opened for the summer season! With all this summer humidity - take your children to the park to cool down on these hot summer days!



Comprehensive Plan Update:

The Comprehensive Plan is an important City-wide plan that guides the land use and growth for the City. It has direct impacts on Zoning decisions and our communities. By State law, it is updated every 10 years - and the Planning Department is developing a community engagement plan to hear your input. See more info here! I will also be arranging a Ward 3-specific gathering to meet with the Planning Department to hear more and provide input - date to be announced soon!

City & Ward Updates!
FY 2024 Budget Signed:

On Monday, June 26th, I joined Council President Miller, Mayor Smiley, and many department directors for the signing of the Fiscal Year 2024 budget. As a member of the Finance Committee, I am proud of the work that we did to increase transparency and participation in the process of reviewing and amending the Mayor's proposed budget, under the leadership of Chairwoman Anthony.

While no budget is perfect - we heard from residents about the need to minimize tax impacts and were able to reduce residential tax increases initially proposed, while maintaining high quality city services. We also responded to feedback in our second public hearing - I sponsored a floor amendment that would increase the funding to traffic calming and engineering from speed cameras from 35% to 75%.
I will be discussing the budget at our July 10th Ward 3 community meeting.




Hope High Auditorium Ribbon Cutting:
Last week, I was proud to stand alongside Council President Miller, Mayor Smiley, School Board Chair Rogel, and many state colleagues to celebrate the ribbon cutting for the new auditorium at Hope High School. I was especially excited to share the stage with Hope High's amazing band - who wow'ed us with several songs!
I shared with the students and staff present that the Council is fully supportive of ensuring they have the resources they need for a top notch education. When we invest in Hope High and in other school buildings across the city, those actions show we care about our children and their future.



Community Development Block Grants:

On June 21, the City held a public hearing on the proposed spending plan for Community Development Block Grants. The full list of proposed projects can be found here. Councilors are also given discretion on a limited pool of CBDG funds. After several conversations with Director Herlin Perry, we identified necessary infrastructure improvements to be made to Vincent Brown Recretation Center that could be supported with these funds. I am working with City Staff to identify further resources for the infrastructure upgrades needed at Vincent Brown Rec Center.

Stay in Touch!
Thank you all so much for all you contribute to our great City. Please reach out any time via email or follow on social media: Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter!
Keep your eyes peeled for information on my Summer 2023 Fundraiser in Ward 3, scheduled for July 26th. While the campaign is over, donations are appreciated and help with ongoing expenses including website maintenance, newsletters, and upcoming community clean ups!
Thank you!
With deep gratitude,
Councilor Sue AnderBois
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