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City of Porterville
291 North Main Street
Porterville, CA 93257
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City Council

State of the City Address
December 2017

I want to thank the businesses honored today, businesses and community leaders like the ones honored truly make this community a great place live, work and play. 2017 has been an exciting year for the City of Porterville. Today I will go through some of the accomplishments and what to expect as we enter the New Year.

The Finance Department remains steadfast in keeping the City on track financially. They were awarded the Government Finance Officers Association Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting for the 27th year in a row.

The Police Department led by Chief Eric Kroutil continues to keep our community safe. The Police Department responded to over 40,000 incident calls and 22,000 officer initiated incidents in 2017, totally 62,000 incidents or approximately 170 incidents a day.

They held three Coffee with a Cop events, where the Police Department met with over 100 community members. 2017, marked the first Porterville Police Department Junior Academy. Thirty youths from our community were introduced to various law enforcement agencies, such as the Sheriffs Office, California Highway Patrol, the District Attorney and the Courthouse. The week long program also included a physical fitness component.

The City of Porterville purchased the former Citibank building on D Street and plans are in progress to convert the facility to a state of the art animal shelter.

In May, the Chief of Police awarded the highest honor a Chief can give, the Medal of Valor, to two officers involved in a shooting in August 2016. The shooting happened when Officer Armando Perez was chasing a suspect and the suspect fire on him, striking him in the upper right hip. Officer Perez was able to return fire and his partner, Officer Adelaido Duran, also returned fire. The suspect was ultimately taken into custody. Incidents like these remind us of the courage and dedication that our first responders have for our community.

2017 was a busy year for the Porterville Fire Department. David LaPere was named Fire Chief. Chief LaPere brings a passion for the safety of the community and nearly three decades of experience to the department. The Fire Department responded to over 4,450 incident calls and expect to reach 5,000 responses by the end of the year. They also assisted in many of the devastating wild fires that have plagued our state. They participated in 8 mutual aid wildland fires wiht 39 personnel.

The Fire Department continued the Fill the Boot Campaign, raising over $18,000 for MDA. They also participated in the 2017 Corporate Games and the Annual Truck Driving Competition at Walmart Distribution Center, taking first place in both competitions.

The Parks and Leisure Services Department has been busy adding amenities to our City parks. Projects for 2017 included a new deck at the City Pool and new picnic shelters at Murry and Zalud parks. They also resurfaced the basketball and tennis courts as well as added a new pickleball court to Zalud Park.

Phase one of the Veterans Park Trail was completed with an ADA Accessible trail including solar lighting. The Pandya Family Foundation complimented the project by spearheading a successful bench drive with 23 benches being donated.

There are several projects planned for next year as well. We will see renovations at the City Library, with the remodeling of the upstairs restroom and the addition of a family restroom downstairs. Murry Park is slated to receive a 9-hole disc golf course, a shade structure at the upper playground and a new shade structure on the east side of the pool.

The Farmer's Market ran again this year from May through June at the Sierra View District Hospital, and was on Main Street for the months of July and August. More than 300 community members attended each market.

Downtown saw the addition of San Joaquin Valley College offering medical and business programs. Family Healthcare Network has also announced their intentions to open a new location on D Street.

The South County Detention Facility, which is scheduled to open in 2018. The facility will house 500 inmates and create over 100 new employment opportunities.

An amendment to Measure R was passed this year, opening up $20 million in funding for bike and pedestrian projects over the next 20 years, which will hopefully be leveraged for up to $50 million in projects.

Public Works has been working on several projects this year included a stamped concrete sidewalk and trial  along Garden Avenue to match the downtown improvements that was completed on Oak Avenue connecting to the Rails to Trails. Other completed projects were the reconstruction of Lime Street and the signal upgrade to D Street and Putnam Avenue.

The widening of the Jaye Street Bridge is continuing for the seconc year. The $7.5 million project is expected to be complete in spring 2018.

GreenPower Motor Company held its ground breaking ceremony on June 2nd in conjunction with the California Air Resources Board who awarded the City of Porterville with a $9.5 million Cap and Trade grant to purchcase 10 zero emission transit buses and the supportive infrastructure. The first two will be received in early 2018, with the remainder to follow.

Retail  development continues to thrive with the addition of the new Smart and Final Extra, Tractor Supply Company, Nanlangka, Chingons Tacos, Spoons Frozen Yogurt, Los Trigales and Deli Delicious.

2018 is lining up to be an exciting year for the retail growth for the Porterville with Aldi, Chipotle and Habit Burger slated to open. We are also excited to see the Vault move to their new larger location.

We continue to work long term on retail growth and the next slide is evident that faith and persistance pays off.

The Walmart Supercenter has informed the City of Porterville that they will be submitting for building permits in the spring of 2018, with the intention of breaking ground in late fall, with a 2019 opening.

2017 has been a blessed year for our community. We look forward to next year with the anticipation of even better times to come.


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