Sunday, November 23, 2008

Week in Review 11/17/08 - 11/23/08

This was a very busy week. There is no way I can cover everything this week without writing a novel so I’ll just hit the highlights (or lowlights depending on how you look at it) ;-)

Tuesday evening council held two worksessions. The first was an update from town staff regarding the Western Wake Water Reclamation Facility (WWWRF). Elected officials from Morrisville and Holly Springs attended the WWWRF worksession as they are partners in this project. The second worksession was to further discuss our search for a new town manager with the two firms council hired to assist us in our nationwide search. The good news that came out of this worksession is that we now have a timeline. The search process and candidate evaluations should be completed and reviewed by council on Feb 27th. I would hope that council could make a decision by mid-March.

On Thursday I had the honor of attending the Town of Cary’s Employee of the Year Reception at the Herb Young Community Center. Sixteen outstanding employee of the year nominees were honored before the five finalists were announced. Now I’m a business owner myself, and a large part of why our business is so successful is our incredible staff. Yes I am biased…honest, but biased ;-). I learned a long time ago that you are only as good as the people who work for you. If you want to be the best – you hire the best. The Town of Cary believes this as well. The nearly 1200 professional, dedicated, and responsive employees at the Town of Cary are directly responsible for our town being the premier community to live, work, and play in that it is. It darn sure isn’t us seven yahoos on council. ;-) (it's a joke guys!)

I spent a great deal of time this week reviewing documents and corresponding with staff and citizens in preparation for Thursday evening’s council meeting. Notable topics included an annexation in Silverton (denied), Habitat for Humanity funding (approved), resolutions to begin the process for a number of town initiated annexations (approved * both myself and Mayor Weinbrecht voted nay) and a transportation waiver improvement request from WCPSS (see previous post). Council also created a site design focus group, but we added two more citizen positions than were recommended by town staff – you just can’t have enough citizen involvement.

On Friday I had the pleasure of participating in the Heartwood Montessori School’s landscaping dedication ribbon cutting. This was a lot of fun – cold, but fun – and it was great to learn more about the school and its curriculum. I was very impressed with their focus on the environment. They even turned an old swimming pool into a rain garden. Good stuff.

I spent a great deal of time this week reviewing WCPSS’s draft reassignment plan and communicating with parents. While I applaud the school system for crafting a multi-year reassignment plan for the first time ever, I am glad that this is just a draft plan, and I hope that after the board receives citizen input a number of common sense changes can be made. I have sent one letter to WCPSS already regarding two nodes off of Maynard and Wicklow (a little over a mile away from Cary High School) that have been reassigned from Cary High School to Apex High School.

Friday afternoon I met with two parents to discuss the reassignment plan, and on Sunday (today) I attended a community meeting in Wessex with parents whose children have been reassigned from Panther Creek (a good thing) to Athens Drive (what???) While this community is not happy they are being reassigned again (4 times in 7 years I think), the majority understands that reassignment away from Panther Creek makes sense – the school is very overcrowded and over ten miles away. They had hoped however to be reassigned back to Cary High School (where they were reassigned to Panther Creek from only 2 years ago). They never dreamed they would be sent to Athens. Who would? I did my best to give advice and answer questions. Depending on how the numbers work out there may be a solution to this mess – keep your fingers crossed.

That’s hardly it for this week, but it’s all I figured you’d want to read about. ;-) Now can somebody turn the heat on please – I’m freezing!