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Pocatello Mayor Brian Blad’s July Newsletter Posted

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July 1, 2020

Pocatello Mayor Brian Blad (photo credit: City of Pocatello website)

The City of Pocatello has posted Mayor Brian Blad’s July newsletter on the City website.

This issue of the Mayor’s newsletter includes articles on “A New Normal,” a message from Southeastern Idaho Public Health, residential firepits, and the announcement that Pocatello’s parks and trails are now open.

To read the Mayor’s newsletter, visit:

https://www.pocatello.us/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/1334

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Pocatello City Council to Discuss Renewal of Senior Activity Center Lease at Tomorrow’s City Council Meeting; In-Person Attendance Allowed

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July 1, 2020

God Bless Truckers Tote Bag, by americanbreadwinner, Pocatello, Idaho.

At tomorrow night’s Pocatello City Council (Council) meeting, the first to allow in-person attendance in some time, the Council will discuss the renewal of the Senior Activity Center Lease.

The current, 10-year agreement for the lease of the Senior Center, expired on June 30, 2020.  The proposal on the agenda is to renew a 10-year agreement term, with a condition allowing for a reduction in term length, should the Senior Activity Center, Inc. relocate to a new or alternate facility.  It also includes a provision to change the name of the lessee from from Greater Pocatello Senior Citizens, Inc. to Senior Activity Center, Inc., and to update current utility processing protocols in place since FY2018.

Also on the agenda is consideration of a request from Old Town Pocatello for a waiver of the open container ordinance to allow alcohol to be consumed on city sidewalks and permitted “parklet” areas throughout the Old Town Pocatello Business Improvement District, daily until 11:00 p.m., beginning immediately through Saturday, October 31, 2020.

The Council meeting will be held at the Pocatello City Council Chambers, 911 N. 7th Avenue, starting at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 2, 2020.  The full Council meeting will be live-streamed at:  http://streaming.pocatello.us/ and available on Sparklight Cable channel 56, as well.

To view the agenda, or for more information, visit:

https://www.pocatello.us/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_07022020-1049?html=true

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

City of Pocatello Offices, PRT Closed July 3 and 4; Sanitation Collection Normal

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(City of Pocatello Press Release, July 1, 2020)

Friday, July 3 City of Pocatello offices will be closed for Independence Day (observed).

Pocatello Regional Transit buses will not be running July 3 and July 4.  Salt Lake Express buses can still be met at the Transit Center.

The Sanitation Department’s collection trucks will be operating as normal July 3.  Residents who are scheduled for a Friday pickup of garbage, recycling, or yard waste should still place their autocarts out as scheduled.

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

Pocatello Police Department Releases Video Explanation of Feb. 25, 2020, Officer-Involved Shooting. VIEWER DISCRETION ADVISED

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(City of Pocatello Press Release, June 29, 2020)

Below is a link to the Pocatello Police Department’s video explanation of an officer-involved shooting that happened February 25, 2020.

This video is intended to provide the public with more information regarding the February 25, 2020 officer-involved shooting in Pocatello.  The incident was investigated by the East Idaho Critical Incident Task Force.  During the course of the investigation, witnesses were interviewed and evidence was gathered.  The Twin Falls County Prosecutor has found that the officers were justified in their actions.

This video contains graphic content and strong language. Viewer discretion is advised.

To view the video, click on the link, below:

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

Pocatello Fire, Police Remind Residents to Keep Fireworks Displays “Safe and Sane”

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(City of Pocatello Press Release, July 1, 2020)

God Bless Truckers Tote Bag, by americanbreadwinner, Pocatello, Idaho.

What’s traditionally been one of the Pocatello Fire Department’s busiest days of the year is almost here.

Firefighters are reminding citizens to keep their celebrations “Safe and Sane” during the days around the Fourth of July.

“We want you to have a safe and enjoyable Fourth of July,” said Pocatello Fire Chief David Gates.  “By following just a few simple tips, you can prevent property damage and keep you, your loved ones, and neighbors from being injured or worse.”

To keep your festivities “Safe and Sane,” firefighters have the following tips:

– Buy only those fireworks that are legal for the City of Pocatello.

– Do not try to relight or handle malfunctioning fireworks – instead soak them with water and throw them away.

– Do not ignite fireworks in a container

– Do not give fireworks to small children and closely supervise older children.

– Light fireworks outdoors in a clear area away from houses and flammable materials

– Keep a bucket of water or a water supply nearby for emergencies.

– Light all fireworks with a long-handled lighter or jumbo punk.

– Make sure all the fireworks are dead out and allow adequate time for the fireworks to cool or place in a bucket of water prior to disposing.

Firefighters would also like to add:

– Fireworks are banned in the Wildland-Urban Interface portions of Pocatello.  To view a map that highlights the areas where fireworks are prohibited, visit bit.ly/PocatelloChubbuckWUI.

– Pets and fireworks do not mix.  Many pets become stressed and fearful during this season, and will try to hide or run away from the noise and lights.  Make sure your pet has somewhere safe and secure to hide.

– Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.

– If your fireworks do cause a fire, call 911 immediately and then attempt to extinguish if possible to do so safely.

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For more fireworks safety tips from the National Safety Council, visit nsc.org/home-safety/tools-resources/seasonal-safety/summer/fireworks.

In Utah, the firework-caused Traverse Fire scorched over 465 acres and led to the evacuation of more than 220 homes in three communities.

Under Pocatello City Code 15.10.040, citizens who light off illegal fireworks can be cited with a misdemeanor.  Additionally, citizens may be held financially responsible for any damages that occur from improper firework use.

“We want to make sure that everyone has a safe Fourth of July,” said Pocatello Police Chief Roger Schei.  “With some recent fires in our region, we want to be proactive in preventing them from occurring.”

Additionally, emergency medical services personnel would like to remind citizens that all firework use can be dangerous.  According to a Consumer Product Safety Commission report, “Fireworks were involved in an estimated 9,100 injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments during calendar year 2018.”

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

Guest Column: U. S. Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) on Justice for All

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June 29, 2020

Justice for All

by:  U. S. Senator Mike Crapo

(U.S. Senator Mike Crapo, official photo)

When there is a need for a major reform in our country, listening is the starting point for sound change.  Recently, I had the opportunity to discuss proposed federal policy changes to address police use of force at a Senate Committee on the Judiciary hearing.  The input of those who have worked closely on this issue is instrumental as we work to enact legislation to rebuild the lost confidence in many institutions designed for the purposes of keeping communities safe.

The vast majority of law enforcement officers are hard-working Americans who put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe.  Unfortunately, we have seen several instances of horrific and inexcusable conduct by some very bad actors under the guise of law enforcement.  Reforms are needed, as well as greater accountability and transparency, to help eliminate racial inequality and rebuild the trust all Americans deserve to have in these important institutions.

God Bless Truckers Tote Bag, by americanbreadwinner, Pocatello, Idaho.

During the hearing, I heard recommendations of how to approach this issue on the federal level.  The discussion I had with Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff, Co-Founder and CEO of the Center for Policing Equity; Melvin Carter, Mayor of St. Paul, Minnesota; and Vanita Gupta, President and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B_YoFR3u0iM&feature=youtu.be.  I heard clearly the need for accountability improvements, more oversight tools and enhanced resources.  Better enabling the removal of bad-actor law enforcement officers is also among requested reforms.

I joined Senator Tim Scott (R-South Carolina) and 45 of my Senate colleagues, including fellow Idaho Senator Jim Risch, in introducing S.3985, the Just and Unifying Solutions to Invigorate Communities Everywhere (JUSTICE) Act.  This legislation would improve and reform policing practices, accountability and transparency.  The JUSTICE Act would:

Law Enforcement Reform

  • Strengthen the training methods and tactics throughout law enforcement jurisdictions, especially regarding de-escalation of force and the duty to intervene, and providing law enforcement with new funding to do so;
  • Reform hiring practices by providing more resources to ensure the demographics of police departments more closely match the communities they serve;
  • Ensure a hiring department has access to view all prior disciplinary records of the officer in consideration;

Accountability

  • Provide grants for more body-worn cameras, as well as penalties for failing to ensure correct usage;
  • Require a report establishing best practices for the hiring, firing, suspension and discipline of bad-actor law enforcement officers;

Transparency

  • Require all police jurisdictions nationwide to report to the Federal Bureau of Investigations instances of use-of-force and discharge of an officer’s weapon; and
  • Require new reporting on the issuance of no knock warrants.

Additionally, the JUSTICE Act will make lynching a federal crime and will create two commissions to study and offer solutions on a broader range of challenges facing Black Americans and the criminal justice system as a whole.  Text and a section-by-section of the JUSTICE Act can be found on my website at www.crapo.senate.gov.  I look forward to enactment of this legislation to help ensure justice for all.

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

Lowe’s Provides Thousands of Free, N-95 Masks to Local Businesses in Pocatello, Chubbuck

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July 1, 2020

Lowe’s Associates Provide Free N95 Face Masks to Local Businesses in Pocatello-Chubbuck

Over the course of the COVID-19 situation, Lowe’s has invested more than $340 million to ensure they serve their customers and associates with essential products and services.  Just yesterday, the company announced it would increase this commitment to more than $450 million, providing additional bonuses to employees.

Last month that commitment was on display in Pocatello, as employees from the community’s local Lowe’s store gave out thousands of N-95 masks to local business owners at the Old Town Pavilion, 420 N. Main Street, in Pocatello on Friday, June 19.

Lowe’s Associates Greg Brush (Operations Manager), Mike Cutler (Store Manager), and Jenn Renn (Install Sales Manager) manned the table for the give-a-way.  Business owners or their representatives simply had to stop by the table set up by Lowe’s staff and indicate the number of employees they had to receive their free masks.

To learn more about Lowe’s commitment to their customers and associates in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, visit:

https://corporate.lowes.com/newsroom/stories/inside-lowes/responding-covid-19-serving-customers-and-associates-essential-products-and-services

To learn more about the Pocatello Lowe’s store, visit:

https://www.lowes.com/store/ID-Pocatello/2587

 

Pocatello: Senior Center Meal Service More Than Doubles with Takeout Only Implementation

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Pocatello Senior Activity Center providing free lunch pickup service for seniors.

June 30, 2020

Pocatello Senior Center Staff and Volunteers, Andy Guerra, Marty Riedle (Staff), George Oyama, Anita Valladolid (Director), Joe Zavala (Staff)

In the early stages of the COVID-19 lockdown, Pocatello’s Senior Activity Center, like most places with food service, closed down.  At the time, they were serving about 70 meals per day with a sit-down service.

Now, after reopening with curbside service only, the number of meals served per day has more than doubled, with a record set recently of 160 meals served in one day.

Senior Activity Center staff and volunteers cook and provide a hot meal daily, Tuesday through Friday, to seniors who drive through the back parking lot of the center.  The nutritious meals typically contain a meat item, vegetables, fruit, and often include a fresh baked cookie.

Meals are provided free-of-charge to seniors, but those wishing to do so can make a donation.

The meal schedule is posted monthly online and in the Senior Activity Center Newsletter, The Scoop.

To learn more about the Senior Activity Center, visit:

http://www.pocatelloseniorcenter.com/

To see July’s menu, click on the tab for June/July Monthly Menu.

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

PragerU Video: Why I Love America, by Dennis Prager

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June 30, 2020

PragerU has released a new video featuring Dennis Prager on, “Why I Love America.”

As noted on the PragerU website, “Dennis Prager has traveled all over the world.  But at the end of every trip, he returns home with a new appreciation for America.  Why?  Because no country is more open, more generous, and has done more for the cause of freedom than America has.

Watch this inspiring video, and be reminded of why America is truly a gift to the world.

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)

Pocatello Water Department’s 2020 Water Quality Report Released

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(City of Pocatello Press Release, June 30, 2020)

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Pocatellans can now view the sampling results of their drinking water.

Recently, staff with the City of Pocatello Water Department mailed out over 26,000 copies of its Annual Water Quality Report.  The document summarizes the results of roughly 2,100 water quality tests conducted for over 100 different compounds over the past year.  The report also details the source of Pocatello’s drinking water, what is in the water, and the types of risks the City’s testing and treatment prevent.

“Our mission is to ensure clean and reliable drinking water is available to our community,” said Justin Armstrong, Water Department Superintendent.  “This year, we are happy to report through our testing that the water meets or exceeds health-based standards established under the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act.”

To ensure that tap water is safe to drink, the Environmental Protection Agency has established regulations which limit the amount of certain contaminants in water provided by public water systems.  The annual results must be reported to utility customers each year to help educate customers and to help them understand what’s in their drinking water.

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If you do not receive a report, copies can be picked up at the Water Operations Facility, 1889 North Arthur Avenue; City Hall, 911 North 7th Avenue; or the Marshall Public Library, 113 South Garfield Avenue.  A copy of the report can also be found online at bit.ly/3eN28Xb.

The Water Department serves more than 17,700 customers within the city limits and in portions of Bannock County, supplying more than 4.6 billion gallons of water per year to customers.  In 2017, the department took home the Best of Show title in the water taste test competition held at the American Water Works Association’s (AWWA) Intermountain Section’s annual conference.  The AWWA Intermountain Section consists of water systems located within Southeast Idaho and the entire state of Utah.

For more information on the City of Pocatello Water Department, visit pocatello.us/water.

(Disclaimer: Some links in this article lead to businesses with which the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer has an affiliate agreement. By following the link and purchasing from them, the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer may earn a small commission at no additional charge to you. This helps us to continue to create content that you can use. Thank you for supporting the Pocatello Chubbuck Observer!)