Greetings and Happy Spring! Winter has been up and down and we're busy preparing for our many seasonal activities. Our annual Keep Belleville Beautiful City-Wide Litter Pick Up is Saturday, April 27th from 9:00 a.m. - Noon. We need volunteers and encourage your participation!
Many other events are just around the corner, including the Memorial Day Parade, the 18th Annual Art on the Square, and the Ainad Shrine Circus Parade. Please check belleville.net for parade route adjustments due to continued road construction on West Main from 6th to 12th St. for our new streetscape.
We thank Debbie Belleville for 34 years of service to the City of Belleville Parks and Recreation Department and for serving the past 6 years as Director. We also thank Sherry Favre Salvatore for the great impact she has had on Belleville in just 2 1/2 years as Director of Human Resources and Community Development. We wish Debbie and Sherry the best of luck on their retirements!
Due to several other City staff retirements, we have reviewed, restructured, and streamlined several departments beginning with our former Public Health and Housing Department. Our new department, named Residential and Commercial Development Services (RCDS), began on February 3, 2019, and will run as a one-year pilot program. Our Director of Economic Development, Planning and Zoning, Annissa McCaskill, is also Interim Director of RCDS. The former Director of Health and Housing position has been eliminated. This reorganization is an improvement and cost savings to the city and links Economic Development, Planning and Zoning; Health and Housing; and the Belleville Police Department. Under this new structure, we aim to improve customer service for citizens, new and existing businesses, and staff. Our goal is to increase communication, create efficient workflow and problem-solving solutions, eliminate barriers, maintain and develop safe, clean neighborhoods, and create a positive, welcoming new business experience. RCDS is one department/three divisions: Housing and Code Enforcement Division; Building and Zoning Division; and Economic Development and Planning Division.
We have reorganized Parks and Recreation and Public Works. This one-year pilot program will go into effect on April 14, 2019. Parks and Recreation staff have historically worked closely with Public Works to manage events and activities. This reorganization connects Parks and Recreation directly to Public Works under our Director of Public Works, Jason Poole, who will also be Interim Director of Parks and Recreation. Our goals are to improve services and activities for citizens and guests, improve communication, create efficient workflow and problem-solving solutions, eliminate barriers, maintain and develop safe, clean neighborhoods and parks, and to create a positive, welcoming and healthy community.
We have also reorganized Community Development and Human Resources. This one-year pilot program will begin on May 1, 2019. Currently, the Director of Human Resources and Community Development supervises the office of General and Community Assistance. Under the new program, our Library Director, Leander Spearman, will also become the Interim Director for Community Development and will oversee the office of General and Community Assistance. Leander already offers community outreach and attends many of the related committee meetings. He also provides services to the area’s poor and homeless and demonstrates commitment to community development through outreach. Presently, the Assistant Director for Economic Development runs Community Development Network meetings. Under the new program, Leander will run these meetings. This new structure will allow our H.R. Director to focus more on Human Resources and allow more time for our Assistant Director of Economic Development to focus on economic development growth activities.
Please do not hesitate to contact my office if you have questions about our new pilot programs. Great things continue to happen in Belleville. Thank you for your support to our community!