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Dear Neighbors,


Fall is here! Cool nights, changing leaves, and Halloween are right around the corner. At City Council that means it's Budget season and we have been working diligently to advocate for the funding for the things that matter to District 5.  I successfully moved $11 million in amendments which, if approved by the Mayor, would be dedicated to build one stoplight and one RRFB flashing crosswalk in each of the 11 Council districts in 2023. You've told me traffic safety is the #2 most important concern of D5 residents, and I'm working hard to address that challenge.


It's also the time for our annual survey! This is an incredibly important tool for our office. It helps us ensure we're advocating for our residents downtown. It is a crucial tool for setting our agenda for the coming year. Please take a few minutes and fill it out here or follow the link below!


Finally, thank you to all our Fall Park Cleanup volunteers! We're so grateful for your help - and we'll see you on April 30th for our spring event! And, credit to D5 resident Jim Burness who took the incredible photo of Lowry featured above. If you've got great photos of District 5, send them to us so we can feature them in future monthly emails!


As always, please don't hesitate to reach out to our office if there is anything we can do to assist you.


Gratefully,


Councilwoman, Amanda Sawyer

District 5

GENERAL INQUIRIES

DenverCouncil5@denvergov.org

720-337-5555

Visit our website for useful information and helpful links!


LOCATION

City and County Building

1437 Bannock St., Room 451

Denver, CO 80202

OFFICE HOURS

Our Office Hours remain mostly virtual. Here is the list of our Office Hours over the next month:


  • Thursday, October 20th, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
  • Thursday, October 27th, 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
  • Thursday, November 3rd, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
  • Thursday, November 10th, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM


Contact our office to schedule an appointment if another time works better for you, or if you would prefer to meet in person!

District 5 News

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2023 Budget Process


Every year in September the Mayor's Office presents City Council with a budget for the upcoming year. This year the Mayor proposed a $1.7 Billion budget. City Council then held 17 budget hearings where each Department and Agency presented their budget requests to Council. 


Following these hearings, Council met to send their requests for changes and amendments back to the Mayor for consideration. We are proud to say that two of Councilwoman Sawyer's recommendations received a super-majority of support from our Council colleagues:


Funding for one warranted stoplight in each Council district — $8,800,000

The federal Department of Transportation publishes criteria for determining if traffic signals are warranted. Denver has numerous intersections where lights are justified but not funded. We also understand from the Denver Department of Transportation and Infrastructure that one traffic signal can take up to three years to study, design, and install. The department has indicated it can set 11 locations into the design phase in 2023. This funding would support the effort from design to build in the following years.

Funding source: Undesignated Fund Balance


One Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB) Pedestrian Crosswalk System for each Council district — $2,200,000

As with the traffic lights discussed above, the department maintains a list of numerous intersections where RRFB crosswalks are warranted but not funded. This expansion allows for the installation of one system in each Council district to improve safety where the need has already been identified.

Funding Source: Undesignated Fund Balance


We also supported several other amendments to the budget, including $4M to complete branch library renovations - including D5's Schlessman Library:


Modernization and deferred maintenance at Athmar Park, Barnum, Pauline Robinson, and Schlessman branches — $4,000,000 

Without question, libraries contribute to healthy communities on many levels. These branch libraries, found in some of our most disconnected neighborhoods, deserve investment. This funding will supplement the difference between what is needed to complete modernization and deferred maintenance.

Funding Source: Contingency Fund 


We are hopeful that the Mayor's Office will include these $15 million of critical infrastructure updates in the budget for next year. The Public Hearing for the budget will occur at City Council on October 24 and the final vote for next year's budget will take place on November 7.

The D5 Annual Survey is Here!


A huge thank you to the over 600 people who've already taken our annual survey! If you haven't, we need your feedback! Each year our office puts together a survey to guide and focus our priorities for the upcoming year. This is crucial information to us and we are so grateful for the time everyone takes to fill it out. Click here or on the button below to take the survey.

Take the D5 2022 Annual Survey Here

13th and 14th Safety Updates


One of the most common complaints our office receives is regarding the traffic on 13th and 14th Avenues, and why nothing has been done to mitigate the dangerous speeds. Our office would also like to know why the planned traffic calming improvements on 13th and 14th Avenues - which we’ve been told will be constructed since early 2020 - haven’t gone in yet!


As you may be aware, City Council does not have the Charter authority to implement these safety measures - only the Mayor's Office and DOTI can do that. However, we've been told that construction of the planned traffic calming measures linked above will begin this month. We are also working to set up a community meeting to discuss additional installation of other measures in the near future.


We're hopeful that these improvements will be installed quickly. There has not been a single crash at 14th & Glencoe since the traffic calming measures were installed at that location. Stay tuned, we'll keep you updated as more information becomes available.

Schlessman Family Library Public Art Project Looking for Artists


The Schlessman Family Library is the second most visited branch in the Denver Public Library system and serves a multigenerational, diverse and broad subset of the community.


As such, the Denver Public Art selection panel is interested in artwork that appeals to the library’s many users. The panel is very invested in celebrating the community that visits Schlessman Family Library and commissioning artwork that is inclusive and accessible as well as interactive and playful, invoking a sense of excitement for those who view it.


The panel is also interested in artwork that could provide opportunities for members of the community or nearby schools to be included in its creation. While the sites are better suited to three-dimensional artwork, the selection panel is open to artworks in all media, materials and formats that are suitable for outdoor display, especially works that are engaging and provide different sensory experiences. Interested artists may submit qualifications here! The budget for this project is $30,000.

Jackson Street Storm Drain Project - Phase 2


Design is currently underway for Phase 2 of the Jackson Street Storm Drain Project, which will connect the recently completed system on the west side of Colorado Boulevard to the east side of Colorado Boulevard at about Albion Street near 13th Avenue. Phase 3, which will affect the northwest portion of District 5, remains undesigned and unfunded, and is not expected to kick off for several more years.


While the community now has greater flood protection benefits from the recently installed stormwater pipe and inlets, Phase 2 will further improve the capacity to manage heavy stormwater flows coming from the upstream portion of the Montclair Basin. Phase 2 construction is currently anticipated to begin in late 2022. You can see the projected timeline (subject to change) in the graphic above. Learn more about the program as a whole here.

Lindsley Park Visioning


Our office will be hosting two public meetings to hear feedback from community members about your vision for Lindsley Park.


The first meeting will be Tuesday, Nov 1 at 6 PM, follow the links to sign up! We are also launching a survey where you can share your thoughts (visit bit.ly/LindsleySurvey or click the button below). You can register for the meeting by visiting bit.ly/LindsleyMeeting or by clicking the button below. If you live in Bellvue-Hale or Mayfair, look for the informational postcard in your mailbox!

Take the Lindsley Park Visioning Survey!
Sing up for the Nov 1 Meeting

Our Gun Buy Back Program Winds Up Today!


In late November 2021, Councilwoman Sawyer and City of Aurora At-Large Councilmember Curtis Gardner announced a Joint Community Gun Buyback Program to help reduce the incidence of gun violence in both cities. Please check out the promotional piece put together by Denver Marketing Services and Denver Channel 8! 


RAWtools, a Colorado Springs-based non-profit organization that works with municipalities and faith-based community partners, will host drive-through gun buyback events. Our last event is today! 


Residents can anonymously turn in firearms for destruction at these voluntary events. Trained volunteers then destroy recovered firearms to ATF standards and convert them into garden tools and jewelry. While we know that individuals participating in criminal activity will not typically turn in their firearms at a buyback event, working to reduce the number of available guns in our communities is part of an overall strategy to address gun violence. Our first seven events brought in more than 800 firearms! Email our office at DenverCouncil5@denvergov.org if you would like to volunteer!

Slow Down Signs Are Back!

You might have seen them around the neighborhood. By popular demand, our SLOW DOWN Signs are back! If you would like a sign or signs please email us denvercouncil5@denvergov.org or stay tuned for our next sign distribution event.

Zoning & Hearing Information

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If you are interested in commenting during a hearing, please review the guidelines and FAQs, and sign up to speak hereSign-up for public comment at a hearing begins 45 minutes prior to the Committee’s scheduled start time and ends 15 minutes before the meeting begins. Click here for information about how to participate virtually.


There are currently two open rezonings requests in District 5. 

  • 100 Oneida St was filed on June 24, 2022. The Planning Board hearing was held on August 17. The Land Use, Transportation, and Infrastructure Committee meeting was held on August 30. The City Council hearing is scheduled for October 24.
  • 1254 Monaco St Pkwy was filed on October 11, 2022. The Planning Board hearing is TBD


Upcoming public hearings *dates are subject to change.

October 17

  • 1555 E 53rd Ave
  • 990 S Sheridan St

October 24

  • 100 Oneida St
  • 2023 Denver City Budget

October 31

  • 2147 & 2151 Tremont Pl

November 7

  • West Highland Neighborhood ADU Rezoning
  • Renaming of Ulibarri Park

November 14

  • 3500 & 3600 Park Ave W

Citywide News

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Denver LeafDrop Is Here, Compost Your Leaves This Fall!


LeafDrop is free to all Denver residents and will run October 10 through December 2. By keeping raked leaves and other organic material out of the landfill, we are reducing waste and greenhouse gas emissions. Compost created through Denver’s LeafDrop Program will be made available for residents to purchase at a discounted rate in the spring.

 

Weekday Drop Sites: Oct. 10 – Dec. 2

The following LeafDrop locations will be open on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.:

  • Cherry Creek Transfer Station – 7301 E. Jewell Ave. (enter on E. Jewell Ave.)
  • Havana Nursery – 10450 Smith Rd. (enter on Smith Road)
  • Central Platte Campus – 1271 W. Bayaud Ave. (next to the Denver Animal Shelter)

 

Weekend Drop Sites: Nov. 4 – Nov. 20

The following LeafDrop locations will be open on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.:

  • Bruce Randolph High School – E. 40th Ave. and Steele St.
  • Cherry Creek Transfer Station - 7301 E. Jewell Ave. (enter on E. Jewell Ave.)
  • Kennedy High School – Newland St. and Brown Pl. Sloan’s Lake Park - 17th Ave. and Sheridan Blvd. (enter on W. 17th Ave.)
  • Veterans Park – S. Vine St. and E. Iowa Ave.

 

The Cherry Creek Transfer Station is the only site accepting loose leaves. Leaves brought to all other LeafDrop sites must be in paper bags. Denver residents can download a coupon to receive a free five-pack of paper leaf bags at participating Ace Hardware Stores.

 

Here are a few more helpful tips:

Leaves cannot contain branches or other materials

  • Only bring leaves to drop-off sites during specified dates and times; dropping off leaves during other times is considered illegal dumping.
  • Pumpkins are also accepted for composting at drop-off locations
  • Never rake or blow leaves into the street; they could clog storm sewer inlets and Denver’s street sweepers.

Denver Animal Protection Survey


Did you know there are over 158,000 dogs and 100,000 cats in Denver? Denver’s Animal Protection Agency wants your opinion about dogs and cats in the city to help us work to protect and improve the lives of animals and people in our community. Please complete this survey to voice your views about various issues related to dogs and cats in Denver. The survey will take 5 minutes to complete. Everyone from Denver who completes the survey will be eligible to win a drawing for a $100 gift card. Three winners will be randomly chosen. Please go to Pet Survey to complete the survey and be eligible for $100.

Mile High Youth Corp Jobs


Mile High Youth Corps is currently hiring for a variety of different positions starting this fall! Current open positions are:


Construction or Health & Wellness YouthBuild Corpsmember:


Construction - The YouthBuild Construction program is a team-based, 6-10 month long program for individuals between the ages 18-24 who are looking to get their GED or high school equivalency. YouthBuild Construction corpsmembers serve on community-based affordable housing projects throughout the Denver metro area.


Health & Wellness –The YouthBuild Health and Wellness program is a team-based, 6-10 month long program for individuals between the ages 18-24 who are looking to get their GED or high school equivalency. YouthBuild Health and Wellness corpsmembers serve in health and wellness organizations in the Denver Metro area, as well as take classes with the Community College of Denver to receive a Certificate in Nurse Aid. All corpsmembers will be enrolled in AmeriCorps—a national community service program. Fall positions start ASAP.


Apply online here! 


For anyone seeking additional information, contact Julia Schaller at julias@mhyc.net, or call 303-433-1206.

Updated, Bivalent Booster Availble to the Public


Two new booster shots are available to help you beat the Omicron variant of COVID-19! The two new booster shots by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna take aim at the latest strains and variants of COVID-19. The bivalent formulations of the vaccines were approved for use as a single booster dose at least two months following primary or booster vaccination. The vaccines are safe and have been tested to meet the Food and Drug Administration and CDC’s rigorous scientific standards.

 

Until now, COVID-19 vaccines have targeted the original SARS-CoV-2 virus, while both new boosters are combination, or “bivalent,” shots. They contain half the original vaccine formula and half protection against the newest omicron variants, BA.4 and BA.5, considered the most contagious yet. The updated boosters are only for people who have already completed their primary vaccination series using the original vaccines. Age eligibility requirements are different for each booster:  


  • Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine, Bivalent: Individuals 18 years of age and older are eligible for a single booster dose if it has been at least two months since they have completed primary vaccination or have received the most recent booster dose with any authorized or approved monovalent COVID-19 vaccine.  
  • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, Bivalent: Individuals 5 years of age and older are eligible for a single booster dose if it has been at least two months since they have completed primary vaccination or have received the most recent booster dose with any authorized or approved monovalent COVID-19 vaccine. 


Vaccines are free, readily available and requires no proof of insurance or identification. Many options for vaccinations are available, including mobile bus clinics (appointments recommended), as well as vaccinations through a primary care provider or pharmacy. Additional resources about COVID-19 vaccines and boosters can be found on the DDPHE COVID-19 webpage at DenverGov.org/COVID19

Shared Streets Community Meeting


Mark your calendars for the virtual Shared Streets Community Meeting on October 25th from 5:30 - 7:00 PM. There will be a walk through of the project overview and discussion of the program elements through an interactive map. Join the meeting to share your voice about the future of this transformational program!


Learn all about the program here.


Sign up for the meeting on the 25th here.


This meeting will also kick off our next round of surveys so keep an eye on the website, DOTI social, and your email for updates!

Denver Noise Ordinance Changes Survey


Denver is reviewing and revising the local ordinance that governs noise, including construction & deliveries, music festivals, and other noise topics- and we need your help! This survey is for Denver residents only. Please help and provide your input by completing this survey.


If you would like to provide additional feedback or request information related to the ordinance stakeholder process you may do so by emailing: phicomments@denvergov.org


Community Events & Meetings

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New at Denver Art Museum: Saints, Sinners, Lovers, and Fools

Saints, Sinners, Lovers, and Fools: 300 Years of Flemish Masterworks opens Oct. 16 at the Denver Art Museum! This unique presentation of medieval, renaissance and baroque paintings, sculptures and other objects from the Southern Netherlands features works from masters including Hans Memling, Peter Paul Rubens and Anthony van Dyck, among others.


This exhibition is a ticketed exhibition, not included in general admission. More info: https://bit.ly/Saints-Sinners-at-DAM

Spirts & Spirts at Four Mile Park

Head to Four Mile Historic Park for a uniquely immersive Halloween-themed event that will give you an opportunity to explore the grounds after dark while entering the otherworldly realm of Victorian Spiritualism. Adult libations, delectable provisions and fantastical amusements will be offered at this signature event at the 12-acre historic oasis in the city. Grim Mountain Legends will provide live performances based on true stories of hauntings, murder and the supernatural experiences that have happened in Colorado. The Metaphysical Marketplace will also open its doors during Spirits & Spirits, giving folks a chance to buy unique crystals and curios.

Trunk or Treat at Cook Park Rec Center

Join Cook Park Recreation Center on October 28 for a spooktacular evening! Wear your costume and enjoy a night of Halloween fun for the whole family. Games, prizes, arts & crafts, trick or treating, 29 ft inflatable slide, haunted house, popcorn stand, and more! FREE for all ages. Don’t forget to bring a bag for candy!


WHEN: Friday, October 28, 2022 | 5:00 -7:00 PM

WHERE: Cook Park Recreation Center, 7100 Cherry Creek S. Drive, Denver 80224

Blithe Spirit at the John Hand Theater

Firehouse Theater Company is back with ticket sales for upcoming show of Noel Coward's work Blithe Spirit. Oct. 1 - Oct. 29. LUN Night at the Theater is Friday, Oct. 14. Tickets also on sale for the five show season. 

Hauntings at the Hanger

Don't miss the Wings Over the Rockies Museum Hauntings in the Hanger on Saturday, Oct. 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Magic show, scavenger hunt, black hole Listening Station, candy and more! Details here.

LUN November Town Hall

Mark your calendars for Tuesday, Nov. 15, at the Eisenhower Chapel, for LUN's next Town Hall on Lowry Traffic Management and Safety. Scott Kilgore will be on hand from DOTI to explain how traffic design decisions are made and attendees will have an opportunity to record their traffic concerns. The LUN annual meeting to ratify Board members will also be a part of this event. Details about the meeting here.

Registered Neighborhood Organizations

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Denver is a unique city in promoting greater citizen involvement through organized neighborhood associations. Currently, there are 78 statistical neighborhoods represented by more than 200 registered neighborhood organizations (RNOs), Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) and Homeowner Associations (HOAs).


In its defined geographic area, an RNO will normally address neighborhood quality of life issues - such as traffic, development and zoning, crime, communication and licensing, and promote social activities to enhance residential spirit, developing a sense of community, and encourage resident participation. RNOs meet regularly and many send out newsletters to keep residents informed on neighborhood issues and events.


Get more involved in your community by joining your Registered Neighborhood Organization (RNO). Below is a list of Council District 5 community organizations. You can also find out which RNO you belong to by entering your address or selecting a location on the map.


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