opinion

Council, community and police working hard to tackle issues

OpEd by Lakewood Mayor Adam Paul
Posted 12/31/18

Wow, did 2018 move fast and what a year it has been! In my State of the City speech, I encouraged the community to be bold and you responded: city council and planning commission digging into …

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opinion

Council, community and police working hard to tackle issues

Posted

Wow, did 2018 move fast and what a year it has been! In my State of the City speech, I encouraged the community to be bold and you responded: city council and planning commission digging into development, residents coming together to end hunger, the city making a historic open space purchase of the Taylor property and most recently, you, the community overwhelmingly saying you want to reinvest our TABOR funds back into the community to ensure we will continue to have an exceptional city for years to come. To top it all off, council passed the 2019 budget unanimously, which will effectively fund the day-to-day operations while investing in new capital assets that will benefit the community.

While council has the final vote, the most important part of the democratic process is your participation. All our meetings are open to the public, and we encourage you to attend. There are also other ways to participate, so please visit Lakewood.org for links to surveys, feedback forms and updates. After all, what is a city but its people!

As we begin to look into 2019, we still have a lot of work to do; however, we will have a lot to celebrate. Next year will be our remarkable city’s 50th anniversary, and throughout the year we will be celebrating, commemorating and learning about our history that has made Lakewood what it is today. Let’s continue to be bold and work together for another 50 years.

I want to share with you a couple of other important actions that I consider bold. Our Police Department’s Community Action Team is working with those who are most vulnerable in our city. They interact with our homeless on a daily basis, working diligently to try to get folks back on their feet. The agents have done incredible things, some that I’d like to highlight. They recently helped get ID’s for two men and then assisted in finding them employment, thus beginning the steps for them to become self-sufficient. They encountered a father and daughter traveling through Colorado via bus who were robbed and left with nothing. The agents worked with a nonprofit to help get the two home to Washington. I’m so proud of our police agents as they not only protect but serve with great creativity to find resolutions to some of the most challenging problems we face as a community.

In my speech, I also challenged each resident to find something to fix or change in our city. For me, I wanted to address hunger. Knowing that we live in a community where not all residents are blessed with having the basic necessities of life, I know we can and must do better. I realized there are a lot of individuals, organizations, nonprofits, churches, businesses and schools that share this same concern and are working to address these issues. All have come together to form the Coalition for Ending Hunger in Lakewood, a food resource provider network. This amazing coalition is working hard to make sure no one in Lakewood goes without food, and I will continue to update you on the coalition’s progress.

As we look back, I am grateful to have served as your mayor for another year. What an incredible city! Are we perfect? No, but we are a city that is engaged and willing to roll up our sleeves and say together we can and will do better. I wish you and your families a blessed holiday season. Please take time to enjoy the little things, the things that make you smile, the things that really matter. If you are able, please help a friend or neighbor in need. After all, you are what make a great city!

Adam Paul is the mayor of Lakewood, Colorado.

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