Dialog E-Newsletter 3/19/21
Dialog E-Newsletter 3/19/21
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** East Lansing City Clerk's Office Election Recap: One Year Later
The East Lansing City Clerk’s Office had a monumental year since the 2020 Presidential Primary Election last March and has worked diligently to improve voter accessibility and safety.
In 2020, the City Clerk’s Office administered three major elections: the March 10, 2020 Presidential Primary Election, the August 4, 2020 State Primary Election and the November 3, 2020 State General Election. Not only did these elections take place during a pandemic, but also during the implementation of no-reason absentee voting and same-day voter registration election laws. The eyes of the world were on this record-setting election cycle and the City Clerk’s Office continued to operate with the utmost transparency to ensure election security, professionalism and integrity.
The successful operation of these elections was also due to the dedication of the hundreds of election workers who came forward during this difficult time to operate 17 precincts and the Absentee Voter Counting Board for each election. Additionally, the polling locations were instrumental with their commitment to remain as hosts for these elections.
The City Clerk’s Office participated in a randomly-selected, post-election audit after the General Election and received stellar feedback. They also participated in the Statewide Risk Limit Audit that was conducted after the General Election. In fact, the City Clerk’s Office opted to livestream the Risk Limit Audit process from City Hall for transparency. The Statewide Risk Limit Audit, which was conducted in January of this year, confirmed Michigan’s vote-counting machines are accurate.
“Many factors leading up to, and in 2020, enabled the City Clerk’s Office to take election administration to the next level in East Lansing,” East Lansing City Clerk Jennifer Shuster said. “Long before the 2020 elections, our staff was hard at work preparing for the new responsibilities we would shoulder in support of Michigan’s state constitutional voting rights, like same-day voter registration and no-reason absentee voting. Additionally, we quickly faced the challenges of conducting elections under public health guidance for COVID-19. Through these challenges, we were able to successfully prioritize election security and voter accessibility in East Lansing. I am immensely proud of the staff in the City Clerk’s Office and grateful for the collaboration with other City departments.”
Some of the items and services offered through the City Clerk’s Office last year include:
* The addition of a second customer service window at the City Clerk’s Office in City Hall to better serve residents coming in to register to vote and vote early by absentee ballot.
* The first-ever satellite City Clerk’s Office in East Lansing, which was opened and operated out of the East Lansing Hannah Community Center the month prior to and through Election Day for the November 3, 2020 State General Election.
* The installation of two additional ballot drop boxes; one at the East Lansing Department of Public Works and one at the CATA Hub on MSU’s campus.
* Expanded evening and weekend office hours before elections for residents to be able to register to vote and vote early by absentee voter (AV) ballot.
* Pre-paid postage applied to the AV ballot return envelopes for the General Election.
* TrackMIBallot, which was piloted in East Lansing for the General Election and allowed tracking of absentee ballots from the City Clerk to the voter and back again (if returned via mail). The goal of this pilot was to also notify voters via email and/or text so they could follow their ballot in the mail.
The City Clerk’s Office is now focusing on voter registration maintenance and the administration of the upcoming November 2, 2021 City Election. Under the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA), voter list systematic maintenance cannot take place within 90 days prior to the date of a primary election or general election for federal office. Therefore, this work is currently being conducted at the local and state levels.
Recently, the City of East Lansing had more than 1,200 voter registrations successfully canceled by the Michigan Bureau of Elections as part of the statewide 177,000 NVRA cancellations that took place earlier this month. These specific voters either surrendered a Michigan Driver’s License to another state or had election mail returned undeliverable to an election official prior to the 2018 election. If the mail was returned undeliverable, the City Clerk’s Office sent a follow-up notice requiring a response. If the voter did not respond to the notice and did not engage in any voting activity in at least the last two federal election cycles (the minimum waiting period under the federal law—NVRA), they were put in a mandated “cancellation countdown” and were already listed on the city’s Inactive Voter File (IVF).
At the local level in East Lansing, voter registration maintenance continues with almost 4,000 more voters being classified as inactive voters. These voters are now subject to the “cancellation countdown” until they participate in an election or reply to a confirmation notice sent from the City Clerk’s Office to reaffirm their residency.
The next scheduled election for the City of East Lansing is on November 2, 2021. This will be a City Election for three open seats on the East Lansing City Council. For more information on candidate filing requirements, click here (https://cityofeastlansing.com/DocumentCenter/View/9016/2021-City-Council-Candidate-Filing-Requirements-PDF) .
AV ballot applications will be mailed out about 75 days prior to this election to voters on the East Lansing Automatic Application List. East Lansing voters who have not already signed up for the East Lansing Automatic Application List (to automatically receive an AV ballot application before each scheduled election in East Lansing), can sign up here (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/FormCenter/City-Clerk-4/Permanent-Absentee-Voter-Form-78) . Community members can also register to vote or update their voter registration information online at www.mi.gov/vote.
** COVID-19 Vaccine Update, U.K. Coronavirus Variant Discovered in Campus Community
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has announced that COVID-19 vaccination eligibility will be expanded on Monday, March 22 to all Michiganders ages 50 and up (regardless of health) and Michiganders ages 16 and up with disabilities or medical conditions that put them at higher risk of a negative COVID-19 outcome. Additionally, MDHHS announced that, beginning Monday, April 5, all Michiganders ages 16 and up who were not previously eligible will be eligible to receive the vaccine.
Community members can find additional information about currently eligibility on the Ingham County Health Department’s webpage (http://hd.ingham.org/DepartmentalDirectory/CommunicableDisease/Coronavirus(COVID19).aspx#8789307-vaccine-information) and can view MDHHS’ latest vaccination update here (https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus/0,9753,7-406-98158-554408--,00.html) .
Links are also provided below to the websites of known COVID-19 vaccine providers in the area (please note that there may be others):
* Ingham County Health Department (http://hd.ingham.org/DepartmentalDirectory/CommunicableDisease/Coronavirus(COVID19).aspx#8789307-vaccine-information) (vaccinating those who live/work in Ingham County)
* Mid-Michigan District Health Department (https://www.mmdhd.org/covid-vaccine-information/) (for Clinton County residents)
* Sparrow (https://www.sparrow.org/vaccine)
* McLaren / Walgreens (https://www.mclaren.org/main/coronavirus-vaccine)
* Rite Aid (https://www.riteaid.com/covid-19)
* Kroger (https://www.kroger.com/i/coronavirus-update/vaccine)
* Meijer (https://clinic.meijer.com/)
Community members who do not have access to the internet or who need assistance navigating the vaccine scheduling process can call 888-535-6136 (press 1), Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Community members can also call 2-1-1.
U.K. Coronavirus Variant Confirmed in Campus Community
East Lansing community members are also advised that MSU did announce this week that the presence of the B.1.1.7. coronavirus variant (the U.K. variant) has been confirmed in the East Lansing campus community. The discovery of this variant, while not unexpected, does underscore the importance of continuing with thehealth and safety practices (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html) that are known to slow the spread of COVID-19, including the U.K. variant. Community members can view MSU President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D.’s recent letter (https://president.msu.edu/communications/messages-statements/2021_community_letters/2021-03-16-coronavirus-variant-detected.html?utm_campaign=standard-promo&utm_source=msunewstwitter-post&utm_medium=social) to the Spartan community for additional information.
** Study Committee on an Independent Police Oversight Commission to Host Community Input Meeting
The East Lansing Study Committee on an Independent Police Oversight Commission will be hosting a community input meeting on Monday, March 29 at 6 p.m. to gather community feedback and perspectives on policing in East Lansing.
The meeting will begin with an overview of what the Study Committee is working to accomplish, followed by small group break-out discussions. Feedback from the meeting will be used to help the Study Committee finalize its recommendations to the East Lansing City Council on the establishment of an independent police review board/commission. Any interested community members are invited to attend.
The meeting will be held electronically due to the COVID-19 pandemic and can be accessed at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86274383355 (Meeting ID: 862 7438 3355). The meeting call-in numbers are (312) 626-6799 or (888) 788-0099. Prior to the meeting, a public meeting notice and agenda will be posted at https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/electronicmeetings. Community members with disabilities requiring auxiliary aids or services in order to attend electronically can notify Diane Shafer at firstname.lastname@example.org (mailto:email@example.com) or (517) 319-6902.
** Improvement Project Begins at Patriarche Park
An exciting improvement project has begun at Patriarche Park involving the renovation of the park’s pavilion and public restrooms.
The project is being funded through a $300,000 Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund Grant from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources as well as dollars allocated from the City of East Lansing’s Income Tax Fund.
The pavilion will be completely renovated, including leveling the concrete floor, new lighting and cabinetry, and a new roof and siding. Improvements and renovations will also be made to the restrooms adjacent to the pavilion and on the south side of the park. Both restrooms will receive complete remodeling of the interiors and the men’s and women’s restrooms on the south side will be converted into four universal restrooms. As a part of the restroom renovations, new roofs and water fountains will also be installed.
Several improvements will be made with environmental sustainability in mind as a part of the project, including installation of low-flow plumbing fixtures, energy-efficient electrical features, a solar array adjacent to the restrooms on the south side that will meet the electrical needs of that facility and installation of a rainwater catchment system at the pavilion. Rainwater collected through this new system will be used for the park’s landscaping.
The project is expected to be completed by the end of June and the pavilion and restrooms will be closed to the public throughout the duration of the project. Temporary portable restrooms will be available to the public during the closures.
** East Lansing Family Aquatic Center to be Closed for 2021 Season, Improvements to be Made at the Facility
Due to the uncertainty of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the need for facility improvements, the East Lansing Family Aquatic Center will not be opening for the 2021 season.
“The safety and wellbeing of our visitors is of the utmost importance and we feel that it is best to not open this summer, given the current status of the pandemic and the fact that hiring lifeguards and planning for the season needs to begin now,” said East Lansing Parks, Recreation & Arts Director Tim McCaffrey. “We also want to take this opportunity to make necessary upgrades at the facility, with plans to re-open an improved Aquatic Center to the public in summer 2022.”
The Aquatic Center first opened in East Lansing in May 2001 and, after 20 years of extensive community use, the facility is starting to show signs of its age. Improvements planned for this summer include replacement of the pool liner, concrete repair work around the pool edge and gutters, refurbishment of the facility’s water slides and landscaping upgrades that will improve the overall look of the facility. The facility’s existing pool liner was installed in 2005 and has surpassed its 10-year useful life expectancy, and the water slides and cement around the pool are also showing signs of needed repairs. The improvements at the facility will be funded with dollars allocated for parks and recreation infrastructure improvements from the City of East Lansing’s Income Tax Fund.
“While we know there will be some disappointment about the closure of the facility this summer, these planned improvements will ensure the continued operation of the facility for many years to come,” said East Lansing Parks and Recreation Projects Coordinator and former Aquatics Coordinator Jim Jennings. “We are looking forward to unveiling these improvements to the community next summer.”
** 2021 Spring Yard Waste Collection Information
With the first day of spring tomorrow, East Lansing residents are reminded that they can gather up the leaves, plant materials, grass clippings and brush/limbs on their property and take advantage of the City of East Lansing’s yard waste collection services beginning this April.
The City will be offering no-fee yard waste collection on alternating Mondays on the east and west sides of the City this spring. Spring no-fee yard waste collection days will be offered as follows:
* East Side: April 19 and May 10 (homes located east of Abbot Road to the City limits at Park Lake Road).
* West Side: April 26 and May 17 (homes located west of Abbot Road to the City limits at Coolidge and West roads).
* Community members should note that when no-fee collection is offered on the east of the City, regular collection will not be offered on the west side of the City and vice versa.
On no-fee collection days, the use of City stickers is not necessary, but other yard waste guidelines do apply:
* Yard waste may be placed at the curb no earlier than 8 p.m. the day before collection and no later than 7:30 a.m. the day of collection.
* Yard waste must be contained within a paper yard waste bag or rigid, 32-gallon plastic container.
* Bags and rigid, 32-gallon plastic containers must weigh no more than 40 pounds and bags should be stored in a dry location prior to being placed at the curb.
* Brush/limbs can also be bundled with string/twine. Bundles may not be more than 4 feet long and 1 foot in diameter. Individual limbs must be 4 inches in diameter or less and bundles must weigh no more than 40 pounds.
In addition to no-fee yard waste collection, community members can schedule a regular curbside yard waste collection on the Mondays when no-fee collection is not taking place. The City's regular curbside yard waste collection program begins April 5 and will be available through Nov. 15. Collections take place on Mondays (excluding holidays and no-fee days) and an online collection request (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/FormCenter/Public-Works-6/Yard-Waste-Bulk-Item-Collection-Request-46) or phone request is required. Online requests must be made by 7 a.m. on the Monday of collection. Residents may also call the East Lansing Department of Public Works (DPW) office to request collection at (517) 337-9459 by 3 p.m. on the Friday prior to the Monday collection.
City yard waste stickers/bags are required for regular collection and the other size/weight and placement guidelines listed above also apply. Yard waste stickers can now be purchased online at www.cityofeastlansing.com/curbsidesupplies (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/279/Carts-Bags-Sticker-Purchases) .
Community members with questions can call the DPW at (517) 337-9459. Additional information about spring yard waste collection is also available at www.cityofeastlansing.com/yardwaste.
** "Calling In" Poster Project at ELPL Inspired by Work of Professor Loretta J. Ross
The East Lansing Public Library (ELPL) and the East Lansing - Michigan State University One Book, One Community (OBOC) Committee are excited to share a public poster exhibition entitled “Calling In.” Inspired by the work of Professor Loretta J. Ross on Calling In the Calling Out Culture, this exhibition showcases posters from Learning for Justice and the Michigan State University (MSU) Libraries’ Special Collections. Displayed with the posters are iconic quotes from the social activists: bell hooks, Audre Lorde and Professor Ross.
The exhibition highlights the destructive reality of dehumanizing people and our long history of coming together for justice. It challenges viewers to think about the power of compassion in affecting change. Exhibition participants are encouraged to move from left to right across the exhibition and to reflect on how the quotes and posters resonate with them. Participants should consider the actions of compassion and love as techniques for change and unity, in celebration of our many differences.
“Professor Ross shares that calling in is calling out done with radical love and respect to achieve accountability. The posters are a wonderful demonstration and display of calling in throughout our history, a show of humanity,” said ELPL Director Kristin Shelley. “I am excited to share the posters and quotes with the community and hopefully help foster thoughtful conversations.”
The OBOC program hosted a community conversation on the Calling In Culture with Professor Loretta J. Ross on March 2, 2021. Calling In is a social activism concept that centers on changing problematic behavior with intention, compassion, strategy and patience. Professor Ross explains, “Calling in is a technique that does allow all parties to move forward. It’s a concept created by human rights practitioners to challenge the toxicity of call-out culture. Calling in is speaking up without tearing down.”
The dates of the exhibition are from March 8, 2021 to May 19, 2021 and can be viewed by driving or walking up to the library, located at 950 Abbot Road in East Lansing. This is an outdoor exhibition. Please wear a mask if you are visiting the library and follow the health guidelines from the Ingham County Health Department and City of East Lansing.
** Place Project Events and Activities Ongoing in Downtown East Lansing
Community members are reminded that "Daytime. Nighttime. Anytime. Place Project" events and activities are ongoing in downtown East Lansing.
The East Lansing Downtown Underground Market is continuing to take place every other Sunday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on the lowest level of the M.A.C. Avenue Garage, 310 M.A.C. Ave. Upcoming market days will take place on Sunday, March 28; Sunday, April 11; Sunday April 25; and Sunday May 9. Community members are encouraged to check out the market webpage (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/2138/East-Lansing-Downtown-Underground-Market) for more information on the COVID-19 safety protocols/customer expectations in place and details on how to get to/enter the market.
The Downtown Weekend Warrior Program will continue to be offered over the next two Saturdays. East Lansing Rotary Club members are volunteering their time to help out with this program, which features outdoor heated dining opportunities at rotating public spaces in downtown East Lansing. This Saturday, March 20, they will be in William B. Sharp Park (corner of Abbot Road and Albert Avenue) from 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
In addition to these programs, other Place Project activities that are ongoing right now include a "You are Special to Me" Photo Contest (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1420) , a "Show Us Your Pot of Gold in EL" TikTok Challenge (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1424) and a community art exhibit (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1409) on display at a number of participating downtown East Lansing businesses that showcases the artwork of area elementary school students.
The Place Project is part of a long-term economic recovery strategy for downtown East Lansing, which serves to address some of the many social and economic challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. As the community looks to the spring and summer, there are many other exciting things on the horizon as a part of the Place Project, including additional outdoor seating, programming, downtown parklets, light installations and public art. Community members are encouraged to stay up-to-date with Place Project happenings by checking back regularly to the Explore Downtown East Lansing web app (https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/401b0d86c9414811a5387550774a2e6e/page/home/?data_id=dataSource_7-BusinessDT_4083%3A509&draft=true) and the Downtown East Lansing webpage (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/2076/Downtown-East-Lansing) .
** City Seeks Nominations for 2021 Crystal Awards
The City of East Lansing is currently seeking nominations for the 2021 Crystal Awards! Community members are encouraged to think of the unsung heroes of East Lansing and consider submitting a nomination for an individual, business, nonprofit or community group. Learn more (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/crystalawards) .
** Children's Cultural Concert Series
The East Lansing Children's Cultural Concert Series will conclude with a special, live performance by Rodney Page next Saturday, April 3 at 11 a.m. at the East Lansing Hannah Community Center, 819 Abbot Road. Several COVID-19 safety protocols will be in place and masks are required. The event is free, but pre-registration is required as space is limited. Learn more about the concert and how to pre-register on the Children's Cultural Concert Series webpage (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/137/Childrens-Cultural-Concert-Series) .
** Public Meeting Notices for Electronic Meetings
The City of East Lansing is continuing to either cancel public meetings or hold them electronically during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. View the Electronic Public Meeting Notices (https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/electronicmeetings) webpage to view details for upcoming electronic meetings.
The State of Michigan and MSU have launched a COVID-19 exposure notification app pilot program for campus and the surrounding community. MSU students, faculty and staff as well as members of the local community are encouraged to download and use MI COVID Alert. Learn more (https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus/0,9753,7-406-99891_102592---,00.html) .
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- [登録者]City of East Lansing
- [エリア]East Lansing, MI
- 登録日 : 2021/03/19
- 掲載日 : 2021/03/19
- 変更日 : 2021/03/19
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