Fifteen years ago, West Park was developed based upon the need to be able to control our own d0estiny. Because of our diligence, we have surpassed the expectations of others and since inception had a balanced budget. From safe lighting, bus shelters, senior programs, retention ponds, beautification projects, youth programs, economic stability, road improvement projects and much more- we have survived because we are survivors!
Although we are proud of what we have done in the past years, we must stay focused to continuously build West Park into the City of Positive Progression. Here is a summary of some of our accomplishments over the previous year:
1. Minor Home Repair Grant Program: 14 residents received approximately $42,000 total in funding.
• FY 2018-2019 Committed Funding – $21,386.04, 8 Families Served
• FY 2019-2020 Committed Funding – $18,000.00 , 6 Families Served
• Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, partial program funding was re-allocated from the Minor Home Repair fund to the COVID-19 relief fund.
2. Childcare Assistance Grant Program where we will be awarding $600 per applicant.
3. Tree Trimming Program: to assist residents during hurricane season.
4. Provided a year-round Senior Program as well as Youth Program, up until the Covid-19 pandemic.
5. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, provided a Virtual Summer Camp for youth and weekly meal deliveries for seniors.
6. Continued a collaborative partnership with Broward College to provide certificate training and entrepreneurial programming.
7. Provided Covid-19 biweekly free food distribution during the summer.
8. Awarded twelve 2019 College Scholarships to West Park graduates.
9. Worked collaboratively with our State Legislature to secure $750,000 in funding for the budget.
10. Provided temporary rent, mortgage and utilities assistance to residents during COVID in the amount of $22,750.00.
11. Implemented traffic calming improvements on SW 20th Street and SW 57th Avenue.
12. Held Annual Mary Kendrick Thanksgiving Community Event and Holiday Toy Giveaway.
13. Held groundbreaking ceremony for the retail plaza development on Pembroke Road.
Dunkin Donuts is the anticipated premiere establishment.
Yes, much progress has been made! But I’m hungry for more and I know you are too! We must continue to find ways to offer viable alternatives as we have so much more to do. That’s why we must keep moving! We must continue to provide more services and more support to our residents. We must be prepared to do more. We’ve made good progress West Park — and a good part of this field has been plowed — but we still have so much more to go before all of West Park can reap the benefits of the goodwill it has sown. The key to all of it is planning, preparation and forward thinking. Those are the steps that will lead us down the road to successful, sustainable progress.
If we continue to make progress on all these things – enduring prosperity and a financially sustainable city government– then we will go a long way toward achieving our most important goal, which is to maintain and improve the quality of life of the people who live in West Park, both today and in the future. For the eyes of the future are looking back at us and praying that we see beyond our own time!
With that being said, please join the West Park Commission and staff for the 2020 Budget meetings. The budget debates continue to be difficult as our needs grow, but our dollars must keep up. Your feedback and input is crucial and these meetings, as well as your participation provide a great opportunity to not only learn how the decisions are made and how taxpayer dollars are spent, but also to have your concerns and comments considered for deliberations. The dates are:
• First Budget Public Hearing – Thursday, September 3, 2020, 6:00 pm
• Special Assessments Public Hearing – Monday, September 14, 2020, 7:00 pm
• Second Budget Public Hearing – Wednesday, September 16, 2020, 6:00 p.m.
No doubt there was a past, which is now gone forever. But we have a bright future ahead of us which is still ours to own. Join me in MOVING FORWARD!
I look forward to working with the Commission, Staff and you, the community at large, to lay the foundation for a prosperous future.
Remember to contact me at City Hall with your ideas, suggestions or concerns. I represent you and appreciate your input into the continued success of our beloved city. I can be reached at (954) 329-8990 or email email@example.com.