South Park wins Neighborhood of the Year! Nationally!

It’s official, South Park is the Neighborhoods, USA winner of 2008 Neighborhood of the Year.

The party is tonight- at the South Park Tavern, 1301 Wayne Ave.

It took a lot of people, working together, to pull this off. Kudo’s to all. I’m sure there will be some official type releases coming out soon. But for now, let’s party! And the rest of you- it’s not too late to buy a home in South Park- we’ve got a few available right now.

See this post for the original announcement that we were in the running: http://esrati.com/?p=739

OFFICIAL RELEASE

Dayton’?s Historic South Park Wins National Award
First Prize for NUSA’s Neighborhood of the Year-Physical
Revitalization
Release Date: Friday, May 23, 2008
Contact:  Karin Manovich, Historic South Park, Inc.,
[email protected]
* *

The work of community leaders, residents and volunteers in Dayton’s South Park neighborhood has been recognized by Neighborhoods, USA (NUSA) with a first prize award for Neighborhood of the Year – Physical
Revitalization.

Historic South Park, Inc., the non-profit neighborhood association supporting revitalization of the 700-structure historic district just southeast of downtown Dayton, earned the award following a presentation on May 22, 2008, at NUSA’s national conference in Hampton, Virginia.

The annual award recognizes projects that are initiated by one neighborhood organization and focused on the physical aspects of a neighborhood such as parks, green spaces, housing improvement, lighting,
litter control, traffic management, signage and business district enhancement. Historic South Park was one of five finalists competing for the honor.

Two major projects helped Historic South Park earn the award: the development of an ambitious neighborhood master plan in 2007 in cooperation with American Institute of Architects volunteers; and the
October 2007 Rehabarama, which restored 10 historic homes for public tours and subsequent sale.

South Park’s community spirit and the creativity of our residents led to this honor, said Karin Manovich, president of Historic South Park. More than 7,000 volunteer hours were dedicated to the improvement of South Park in 2007.

The historic district’s momentum during the last 18 months has generated unprecedented demand for housing, according to Manovich.

NUSA, founded in 1975, is a national organization committed to strengthening neighborhood organizations and communities. For more information, go to www.historicsouthpark.org or www.nusa.org

Ohio priorities- all mixed up.

Rich people need tax breaks; poor people don’t need mental health facilities.

Because “airplanes are mobile” and people can fly them anywhere to get them fixed, the State of Ohio has decided to give their owners a tax break

Ohio House passes capital improvements budget
The spending plan, approved 94-2 just after 10 p.m. on Thursday, May 22, also includes a provision aimed at stimulating the growth of Ohio’s aviation industry, including aircraft repair that drew praise from

State Reps. Diana Fessler, R-New Carlisle, and Tom Brinkman, R-Cincinnati, cast the only “no” votes.

House Bill 562 would exempt aircraft, parts, equipment and related material from the sales tax.

“This will help any Ohio company involved in aviation or aviation repair,” said John Bosch, president and chief executive officer of Commander Aero Inc, based at Dayton-Wright Brothers Airport.

Yet, the poor people, who need nearby mental health facilities (remember, gas is at $4 a gallon) are ignored- with the closing of Twin Valley in Dayton.

Strickland, legislature clash on Twin Valley closing
Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland and the Republican-controlled legislature appear headed for a showdown over his plan to close Twin Valley Behavioral Healthcare in Dayton by June 30.

Despite a line-item veto threat from Strickland, the Ohio House included a six-month moratorium on the closing in the capital improvements budget that was approved 94-2 on Thursday night, May 22.

Strickland also expressed “concerns” about a second budget provision earmarking $6.3 million for a Dayton-area crisis care center to ease anticipated pressure when the 110-bed Twin Valley on Wayne Avenue closes.

“I have a constitutional obligation to maintain a balanced budget and that requires me to make some very difficult decisions,” Strickland said.

The budget includes nearly $84 million for a new Cleveland-area psychiatric hospital.

Strickland said the situations are different.

Of course they are different situations, Governor, the rich have lobbyists, the poor people only have the people we elect to represent us- and they are more interested in how much can you stick in their campaign funds.

It’s interesting how the Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association- is against the closing of Twin Valley- but already has a plan to ask for State money to support their efforts to provide psychiatric beds in-house if they get the funds. Most hospital bailed out of in-house psych units over 30 years ago when they realized it wasn’t a profit center when President Reagan closed psych hospitals across the country. Both Premier Health Partners and Kettering Health Network are sitting on huge hordes of cash- and busy sprawling away from the urban core.

Also in the mix is a $2 million earmark for Ballpark Village- even though a developer isn’t on board. City Manager Rashad Young is talking about building a new “Greenwich Village” near the ballpark- when the allure of the real thing is more like the Oregon District, which could be put on steroids with a $2 million dollar infusion, but, that might make too much sense.

The reality is- our tax dollars are no longer ours. We’re getting to foot the bill to subsidize the ideas and dreams of the wealthy, while forgetting the basic purposes of government and society: to provide a safe and stable environment and infrastructure, so that we can all reach our potential.

Any thoughts?

Hit the road, Mack, and won’tcha go home

When the going gets rough, Percy Mack gets going. With no real plan on how to inspire the voters of Dayton to reach into their pockets for more money- Dr. Mack took the easy route out- heading for Columbia SC and more money.

The school board had no plan in place, and doesn’t seem to realize the most important thing a good leader does is prepare a number 2 person to step in and takeover.

If Deputy Superintendent Debra Brathwaite isn’t the right person to step right in, the board should consider resigning as well. We don’t have time to bring in someone new, and get a new levy passed.

Percy Mack leaves; board to start search process | Get on the Bus | Observations on schools, kids, teachers, teaching and education by Scott Elliott, Dayton Daily News
Mack on Friday accepted a job as superintendent in Columbia, S.C., a slightly larger school district of 23,000 students compared to 16,000 here.

Mack, who could not be immediately reached for comment, said earlier this month he was interested in the job primarily because it was closer to his native Georgia. He interviewed but was not selected for the superintendent job in Mobile, Ala., in September.

The school board in Columbia interviewed Mack and two other candidates last week. After a meeting this morning, they offered him the job and he accepted, according to The State newspaper.

School officials there did not disclose contract terms but have said they wanted to pay their next superintendent between $195,000 and $230,000. Mack makes about $140,000 in Dayton.

Dayton school board President Yvonne Isaacs said she was happy for Mack but sad for herself and for Dayton.

“This gets him as close to home as he can be without going home,” she said. “That’s good for his family.”

As for the district’s immediate future with a levy expected in November and no superintendent after July 1, Isaacs said the board would meet quickly to begin developing an action plan.

“It’s going to present a challenge for us,” she said.

If it takes the board more than one week to fill this spot, they may as well admit to the public that they don’t have an organization that deserves our support.

Things to do this weekend in Dayton Ohio

Well, there is really only one that’s important- head down to downtown tonight for Urban Nights. Check out the restaurants, bars, art galleries, urban living spaces and watch the people.

There will be cool stuff happening all over- but the new green modular home on Patterson and whatever the Dayton Circus is up to in the Cannery on Wayne are my picks.

I’m sure there are lots of other festivals, activities, and things going on- anyone care to pimp their faves in the comments? What are you planning to do this weekend?