Helping kids to succeed
Last week I attended an event for Salt Lake County Youth Services' Milestone Program. Milestone is one of Salt Lake County's life-changing programs that supports kids who have aged out of the foster care system and often end up homeless. Milestone helps people like Nick - to give him a roof over his head and the tools he needs to set off on the path to self-sufficiency. Now Nick has his own apartment, a job, and is a college student. Thank you to Nick for being an inspiration to us all, and to the staff at Youth Services who work everyday to build healthier communities.
Immigrants contribute to a better economy
Outdoor Retailer Winter Market
I had a great time touring the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market last week. At the event, I got a look at the latest in outdoor gear at the jam-packed Salt Palace Convention Center that is wall to wall in exhibits. Outdoor Retailer brings 22 thousand visitors and $20 million to the state twice a year, in their Winter and Summer markets.
Prioritizing public safety, criminal justice reform in the 2016 budget
I presented my 2016 proposed Salt Lake County budget to the County Council yesterday. Criminal justice reform is prioritized in the 2016 budget because the system we currently have is broken and costly. The balanced budget I presented supports my belief in
taking on tough issues and solving problems. It prioritizes the county’s core
responsibility – public safety. In this budget, we will re-dedicate proceeds from an existing jail bond tax
levy—passed by voters in 1995 to construct a new jail—to help address the
overcrowded jail and understaffed District Attorney’s office. The approximately
$9.4 million a year would be used to build a new Community Corrections Center,
as well as support several new Pay for Success initiatives that are designed to
reduce recidivism, address homelessness and work with low income mothers and
their children to gain a good start in life. My conviction is that we can limit the number
of new jail beds by finding the courage today to seize this opportunity to fund
immediate needs now, while figuring out how to interrupt the projected flow
into the criminal pipeline.
Building healthier communities throughout the Salt Lake Valley
This week I participated in two events that represent important milestones in ensuring Salt Lake County residents stay safe, healthy and active. First, I joined
Salt Lake County Health Department Director Gary Edwards and others as we broke ground on the new health clinic in West Jordan. Once the new clinic is open, residents living in and around West Jordan will be able to get their kids vaccinated and have access to other resources provided by our highly skilled Health Department staff.
Take a look at the Deseret News article that talks about the new clinic.
I also spoke at the grand opening event for the new
Salt Lake County Aging & Adult Services' senior center in Midvale. The new senior center gives Midvale-area seniors access to healthy meals, fitness and art classes, and is a place they can call their own when visiting with friends. My promise to the seniors who will use the center, is the county will keep the lights on and the sidewalks cleared - but we need you to give life to the facility.