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The Mayor's Message


The Mayor's Message - 12.16.2019

The Forestry Division has started its winter pruning operations. Between now and mid-April, approximately 6,500 street trees are scheduled to be pruned by a City certified arborist and staff, and another 2,100 by contract staff. Most pruning is completed in the winter while the tree is dormant, which is the better time, and it is easier to see the structure, identify specific pruning needs and it eliminates the risk of potential disease spread such as Dutch elm.

Flu season is in full swing but it is not too late to get a flu shot. Receiving an annual vaccine is the best way to reduce your risk of getting sick with seasonal flu and spreading it to others. FCPH has flu vaccine available for residents age 6 months and older.

The Inspections Department suggests considering additional safety features in your building construction project, which can prevent injuries due to unexpected or unforeseen emergencies. The building code is the minimum requirements for new construction. For flooding situations, consider adding sewer shutoff valves, back-flow preventers and an emergency backup for sump pumps. Other added safety features include a storm shelter or safe room in the event of high winds or a tornado. There are other design suggestions at FEMA dot Gov that can help or talk to your contractor. With minimal added cost, you can protect your family and your home.

There are several interesting Library programs and events in the next couple of weeks including: the annual LEGO Mania Design Contest for kids at the Main Library on December 30; and a Frozen New Year’s Party for kids and families of all ages December 31 at the Main Library.

Police Chief David Todd and others traveled recently to Bismarck to present a proposal to the North Dakota Peace Officer Training Academy Board for Fargo to have its own police academy. With a staff of 210 with 185 sworn officers, on average, the Fargo Police Department hires about 20 sworn officers per year and like all other departments, they have found hiring and recruiting certified officers to be an increasing challenge; therefore, the need is there to be innovative in recruiting and hiring strategies. If Fargo had its own academy, on-board training could be incorporated into the curriculum. The board was impressed with the curriculum put together for the presentation and gave Fargo provisional approval to move forward with its own academy. This is a major step for any city police department and will give Fargo an advantage in the recruiting and hiring competition.

As you may have heard, Craig Whitney, president and CEO of the Fargo Moorhead West Fargo Chamber of Commerce died Saturday. The entire community of Fargo mourns the loss of Craig Whitney, while offering our thoughts and prayers to his family and friends. Craig was a visionary leader who helped unite and advocate for the entire metro area over the past decade. A tireless communicator, his tenure will be marked by success, growth and community building. I will greatly miss his steady leadership and calm demeanor.He had been with the Chamber since 2010 where he brought together a coalition of more than 2,000 public, private and nonprofit groups. Visitation will be held Thursday at the Hjemkomst Center in Moorhead and his memorial service will be Friday at the Avalon Events Center in Fargo.