Pre-K 4 SA has published a newsletter with information on the program, board members, and more. Here is a link to the entire newsletter: http://sanantonio.gov/Pre-K4SanAntonio/newsletter.aspx
The City’s 2013 Employee Survey will be disseminated to all employees this April. It is the fourth time the City will disseminate a survey to its entire workforce. In 2007, we successfully conducted the first-ever employee survey across the organization. As a result, the City now has six years of important employee satisfaction survey data. The overall purpose of the employee survey is to gather input from employees in order to improve the quality of our work environment and improve communication with City employees.
An independent private firm, ETC Institute, will collect and analyze the results of the survey. The survey will be completely anonymous for our employees and it will be available in both English and Spanish.
After each survey process is completed, every Department is required to develop Action Plans to improve Communications and Job Satisfaction, based on individual department survey results. The purpose of developing the Plans is to identify needed improvements in the area of communications practices and the department work environment. Department Directors are held accountable and are responsible for implementing the Communications/Job Satisfaction Action-Improvement Plans.
The City now has employee survey data that allows the organization to benchmark Communications/Job Satisfaction improvements and identify areas in need of improvement within departments over a six-year period of time. The City will continue to ask for input from employees on how to improve communications methods in all departments and job satisfaction by conducting ongoing biennial employee surveys.
Luminaria took place on March 9 and once again it was a great success. This year over 325,000 attendees were entertained by the various art forms and disciplines. Luminaria included 93 performances and installations utilizing over 600 national, international and local artists. This year, artistic director Richard Rosen and co directors Melissa Marlow and Kathy Armstrong expanded the event footprint to include Hemisfair Park, the closing of South Alamo (Market to Chavez) with some exciting artists designed vehicles, La Villita and the Arneson River Theatre.
The Riverwalk (Southbank from the Grotto to Arneson) and Houston street were also included allowing for “fringe” art activities to take place and to showcase the city’s “X Marks the Art” program, which is a program designed to enhance the vacant windows along the Houston street vicinity.
Luminaria is a public and private partnership and we would like to thank all the sponsors that help to make these “Night of the Arts” possible, including the City, Valero, HEB, Rackspace and the 80/20 Foundation, Bank of America, AT&T, SAWS, Bud Light, Coca Cola, TheFund and NuStar Energy. The City plays a major role contributing by not only making a financial investment but also by allocating Personnel and the team that supported the event includes the Department of Culture and Creative Development, Downtown Operations, Parks & Recreation, Police and Fire.
As we look towards the future of Luminaria, a team of three professionals were hired in partnership with the City and the Luminaria Board to develop a strategic plan for the event. The team is comprised of artists and arts administrators that have extensive national and international experience with art events and festivals. They are charged with looking at the governance, the artistic direction and fundraising strategies to ensure the success of this event.
Over the last six years, we have focused on providing wellness initiatives for our employees; This effort also helps by focusing on prevention and managing the more than $ 100 Million spent on Employee Benefits Program over the last year.
Currently, more than 3,000 employees are participating in our wellness program this year compared to 750 participants last year, which further demonstrates the increased commitment of employee wellness.
Such initiatives in our Employees Wellness Program include biometric screenings which provide employees their personal health indicators, The Virgin Health Miles Program helps employee’s to track daily physical activity through an online account to monitor and earn “HealthMiles” points and Smoking cessation programs
The 6th annual City Manager’s Step Up to Wellness 5K was our most successful race to date. The event was held on February 23rd with nearly 2,100 participants completing the 5K course.
San Antonio is looking for the best and brightest to guide San Antonio’s Pre-K 4 SA program. To date, the City has made progress in the recruitment process for the chief executive officer, and recruitment is underway for the education center directors and the director of professional development.
Job fairs were held on February 27 and March 6 with close to 450 in attendance. Additional fairs are scheduled on March 18th, 20th, and 28th. Visit the City’s website for more information.
|Master Teacher||Teacher Assistant|
|Assistant Career Director||Fiscal Administrator|
|Fiscal Analyst||Procurement Specialist II|
|Sr. Accountant||Administrative Assistant II|
|School Nurse||Transportation Assistant|
|Cafeteria Supervisor||Cafeteria Assistant|
Since 2005, the City of San Antonio has implemented various practices and business processes to promote local government transparency across the organization. Included in with the City Council agenda packets this week was a memo outlining Municipal transparency efforts.
This memo illustrates efforts in Financial Reporting, Agenda posting, community surveys, Ethics training, and Bond Program development and reporting. You can find the complete memo here.
San Antonio is one of more than 300 cities and law enforcement agencies participating in the 2013 Annual Great Texas Warrant Round Up. Cities are coordinating their efforts and provided individuals with outstanding warrants a grace period, in which they can resolve their warrants. Our Municipal Courts system coordinates this effort along with the San Antonio Police Department and community support.
The grace period which Ended on March 1, allowed individuals with outstanding class c warrants (ex. traffic, code violations) an opportunity to clear their warrants. This warrant roundup is part of an effort the City is taking to resolve more than 250,000 outstanding warrants. Last year municipal courts generated $2 Million in revenue from the warrant round up.
The warrant roundup enforcement is from March 2 – 8. The Municipal Court’s Marshal Unit partners with the San Antonio Police Department to execute outstanding municipal court warrants at violator’s home, office or other location where they are found.
We’ve made tremendous progress in a very short amount of time for the Pre-K 4 SA program. Much policy work has been done by the PreK board leadership of Elaine Mendoza and the 10 board members, half of whom are educators and the other half business leaders. It’s a competent, experienced and early childhood passionate board of directors who are meeting more than weekly to launch the Pre-K initiative.
Staff has assembled a curriculum review committee (CRC) and a committee to develop the student enrollment process for Pre-K 4 SA. In fact, the request for proposals for the Pre-K 4 SA curriculum are currently being solicited and we expect up to 30 research based proposals that are aligned with TEA prekindergarten guidelines. Much thought and deliberation has gone into the curriculum process with local early childhood educators including Eleanor Elder, a retired curriculum director from a local ISD who is a consultant to our Pre-K CRC.
Additionally, seven ISDs have approved the MOU with the city including Northside ISD, North East ISD, San Antonio ISD, South San ISD, Harlandale ISD, Edgewood ISD and Southwest ISD.
The city hired Ligature Partners to assist with the recruitment of the Pre-K 4 SA CEO. The Pre-K Personnel Committee (of the Pre-K board) is chaired by Joe Robles, CEO of USAA. We have interviewed highly qualified candidates and the Pre-K board and I plan to hire a CEO in early March.
Soon we will begin the public information campaign for the Pre-K program and conduct the lottery for enrollment of the students in late April. Transportation plans will be developed as well.
Finally, the first two Model Centers will open in August. Design and construction was approved by the City Council last fall. Both the north and south centers are under construction, are on schedule and within budget. Their completion is expected by August 1, 2013. Selection of the east and west centers will begin this spring with their openings in August of 2014.
The City of San Antonio is one of the proud sponsors of the 19th Annual Basura Bash River and Waterway Clean Up scheduled for Saturday, February 23. The Bash is the largest one-day waterway clean-up in the State.
Each year, the Basura Bash Planning Organization hosts the event which continues to grow and relies upon volunteer participation from the community. In 2012, the event drew over 2,000 volunteers who helped clean-up 15 waterways and eliminated 24 tons of trash from going further downstream.
We are excited to see strong support from local businesses and organizations as the event serves to increase awareness on the significance of keeping waterways clean through volunteerism, community education, and building partnerships.
Several City departments and Council Offices are supporting the event which is also aligned with SA2020’s Natural Resources and Environmental Sustainability Vision Area.
This year, event organizers hope to reach their goal of 3,000 volunteers who will assist in 15 clean-up areas including several in City parks and along the creekways including the Tobin Trailhead along the Salado Creek Greenway, MLK Park, Olmos Basin, and the Leon Creek Greenway where we expect approximately 300 volunteers for this 9.6 mile area.
I want to thank all of our departments who have assisted with coordinating logistics including the Parks and Recreation and Solid Waste Management Departments.
For anyone interested in volunteering as an individual or forming a team, please contact (210) 858 – 8520 or You may also visit the Basura Bash web site at www.basurabash.org
I would like to provide you with an update on the City’s efforts to improve our library Facilities. The FY 2013 COSA Operating and Capital Budget includes $3.5 million for repair and renovation at libraries.
The Extreme Makeover concept resulted from the collaborative work of the Library and Building Equipment Services departments. The goal of this initiative was to promote community pride by offering public spaces that were attractive, user friendly and conducive to library services at the same time address needed maintenance needs.
As a result, Comprehensive teams were created. These teams consist of plumbers, painters, carpenters and other craftsmen. These Teams will target four branch libraries for extreme makeovers in 2013. In 2009, an inventory of need of $17 million was identified for existing library buildings. Over the last 3 years $8 million worth of work has been completed at 20 locations.
To date, two libraries have been “made over”, the Forest Hills and Thousand Oaks branch libraries. The appearance of these two libraries has been transformed dramatically. Next, the Brook Hollow branch will close February 25 and will re-open March 15, and work on the Johnston branch is scheduled for April 1 to May 19.