Volume 56 | February 19 - February 23, 2018
Moreno Valley Named U.S. Mayor's Challenge Champion City
The City of Moreno Valley is one of 35 Champion Cities selected today as finalists in the 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge, a nationwide competition that encourages city leaders to uncover bold, inventive ideas that confront the toughest problems cities face.

These 35 urban innovations rose to the top of a competitive pool of more than 320 applications. The Champion Cities will now begin a 6-month testing phase where they will conduct public prototypes of their ideas with grant funding of up to $100,000 per city, a new addition to the Competition this year. The Mayors Challenge returns to the U.S. as one of the first investments in the American Cities Initiative, a suite of new and expanded programs that will empower cities to generate innovation and advance policy.

“Moreno Valley is a rapidly expanding, global City with a proven track record of applying innovation and creativity to deliver exceptional services to our residents, business owners, and visitors,” said Mayor Yxstian Gutierrez. “As soon as I learned about the Mayor’s Challenge at the 2017 United States Conference of Mayors, I recognized that Moreno Valley’s history of ingenuity and resourcefulness made it an ideal candidate to compete to become a 2018 Champion City. The unique opportunity provided to us by Bloomberg Philanthropies will mean that our residents will no longer have to choose between earning a living and receiving an education. They can have both. And our businesses will have ready access to an educated workforce. As Mayor, I am taking the bold steps necessary to lift up our residents and businesses and create the workforce of the future. I proudly accept the Mayor’s Challenge and I am humbled by this historic moment as our City is designated as a Champion City."

Moreno Valley now advances to the six-month “Test, Learn, and Adapt” phase of the competition. Cities will refine their ideas during this process with up to $100,000, as well as personalized support from innovation experts, to test and begin building support for their urban innovations and submit a new application in August 2018. In October, four cities will receive $1 million awards and one will receive a grand prize of $5 million to bring their ideas to life.

"We received hundreds of bold and creative ideas from cities around the country in response to the 2018 Mayors Challenge, and these 35 really stood out for their potential to improve people’s lives. The next six months are a great opportunity for the cities to test their ideas and make them even more innovative and effective,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and three-term Mayor of New York City.

The 35 Champion Cities performed the best against four key criteria - vision, potential for impact, implementation plan, and potential to spread to other cities. A prestigious selection committee Co-Chaired by Former Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and Former Xerox Chairman & CEO Ursula Burns and comprising distinguished policy experts, artists, academics, business executives and social innovation leaders assessed the applications.

For the majority of Moreno Valley residents, formal education and career training stopped at high school, creating a barrier to advancement into positions with higher wages and greater opportunity. The City of Moreno Valley's proposal will incentivize and support working adults to pursue education and technical training, allowing them to overcome the “earn vs. learn” dilemma and advance their skills while still providing for their families.

The 2018 Mayors Challenge builds on the success of previous Bloomberg-sponsored Challenges in the U.S. (2013), Europe (2014), and Latin America and the Caribbean (2016). For more information, visit  mayorschallenge.bloomberg.org  and @BloombergCities on Twitter and Instagram.
Homeless to Work Program Already Changing Lives
The City of Moreno Valley's new Homeless to Work Program is designed to help individuals needing a hand up through temporary work programs that lead to more permanent employment opportunities.

The program, which began late last year as a partnership between the City and the Salvation Army, is already changing lives.

A homeless man named Toney was hired last month to participate, working two days a week, five hours a day, for an hourly rate. He was dirty and disheveled, but by all appearances he seemed to be a stable, regular guy.

As Toney opened up in the program’s weekly case management meeting, he revealed a serious drinking problem. That problem cost him his job, his house, and his marriage.

He tried to get a job many years ago, but felt discouraged by the struggle of applying for work without an address or steady living arrangements. Toney told Homeless to Work program coordinators it was just easier to collect cans.

He’s been on the streets of Moreno Valley for five years – collecting cans.

Working in the Homeless to Work program, Toney showed up every day with a glow on his face. He is so proud to be working again – and it shows.

Program coordinators knew that steady employment couldn’t be a possibility until Toney dealt with his drinking issues.

Every day, program coordinators would tell Toney the adult rehabilitation center (ARC) could change his life – if he was ready. Every day Toney would say, “I’ll go tomorrow.”

This week, Toney decided he’d had enough of the streets. He checked into the ARC, ready to address the issues which have kept him from successfully reentering society.

A new homeless man has been hired to take Toney’s place in the Homeless to Work program. He started Thursday, taking the first step toward a path to finding permanent employment.

For more information about the Homeless to Work program, please contact the Salvation Army at 951-656-1822 or the City of Moreno Valley at 951-413-3021.
Officer Friendly Helps Businesses Create Shopper-friendly Environment
The Moreno Valley Police Department’s “Officer Friendly” has been working with business owners and employees to prevent loitering and crime near businesses during hours of operation, helping to create an inviting environment for customers to Shop MoVal.

The Officer Friendly program assigns a police officer to walk a “foot beat” in the City’s business district to act as a direct contact between businesses and the police department.
There are a few simple steps business owners can take to prevent commercial loitering and help customers feel welcome and safe.
The Moreno Valley Police Department encourages owners and managers to:
  • Cut back and clean up shrubbery and low hanging foliage
  • Place no trespassing signs visible to non-customers and ensure property boundaries are clear
  • Increase lighting near entrances and in parking areas
  • Secure outdoor electrical outlets
  • Change outdoor water faucets to ones which require a key to operate them
  • Introduce yourself to neighboring business and keep contact numbers on hand
  • Report suspicious people or activity to (951) 776-1099.
  • If there is an emergency please call 9-1-1.
Please contact the Moreno Valley Police Department with any questions or additional safety tips at (951) 486-6700.
Help Keep Moreno Valley Beautiful Community Clean Up March 3 
Help Keep Moreno Valley Beautiful by participating in a Community Clean Up Event on March 3 along Elm Court. Interested volunteers should meet at 9 am near the intersection of Elm Court and Clover Avenue.

Make the day even more fun by bringing friends and family to help keep our City litter-free. Please remember to bring water, and wear sunscreen, long pants, and closed-toe shoes. Litter grabbers, gloves, and trash bags will be provided for volunteers.

The City of Moreno Valley created the Keep Moreno Valley Beautiful Program to encourage the community to become a partner in the City’s beautification efforts. The Keep Moreno Valley Beautiful Program’s mission is to build partnerships which inspire community engagement and the development of beautification programs that enhance the quality of life and civic pride in the City of Moreno Valley.

For more information, please email MoValRecycles@moval.org or call 951.413.3109.
Moreno Valley Mall Library Offers Free Computer Classes
The Moreno Valley Mall Library offers free computer classes every second Saturday at the Moreno Valley Mall. These classes are catered to fit each individual need – whether it’s learning the basics like how to use a computer mouse or enhancing your Excel skills.

Computer classes begin at 11 a.m. Classes are first come, first serve. Please arrive early.

Moreno Valley Mall Library location:
Moreno Valley Mall
22500 Town Cir, Moreno Valley, CA 92553
(2nd floor, across from Sears and next to HomeTown Buffet)

Branch hours:
Monday—Wednesday: 1 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Thursday—Saturday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
City's Capital Improvement Plan Wins Budget Excellence Award
The City of Moreno Valley is honored to receive the Capital Budget Excellence Award from the California Society of Municipal Finance Officers for the City’s Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for Fiscal Years 2017/18 & 2018/19.

The CIP proposes approximately $1.43 billion for nearly 400 projects designed to improve and maintain the City’s infrastructure through 2022 and beyond.

The CIP is a comprehensive five-year planning document prepared to forecast and prioritize the community’s capital needs for the City’s growth and development, as well as a strategy for the maintenance of existing infrastructure. Capital planning represents an ongoing investment in the City’s future to ensure the timely repair and replacement of aging infrastructure, and the implementation of priorities to meet the demands of our community.

The CIP for Fiscal Years 2017/18 & 2018/19 was adopted by the City Council in coordination with the City’s two-year budget cycle.
Upon request, this news release will be made available in appropriate alternative formats to persons with disabilities, in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Any person with a disability who requires a modification or accommodation in order to participate in this meeting should direct such requests to Guy Pegan, ADA Coordinator, at 951.413.3120 at least 72 hours before the meeting. The 72-hour notification will enable the City to make reasonable arrangements to ensure accessibility to this meeting.