President Gerald Ford 1913-2006

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Former President Gerald Ford, the only non-elected chief executive, died Tuesday, December 26, 2006. The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum in Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor provide exhibits, history and papers of Michigan’s only president and his family. The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press have extensive coverage of the President's life.

A Plan for Ann Arbor’s Future

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Every year the City of Ann Arbor produces a 5-year plan for Capital Improvement projects – bridge repairs, street construction, utility upgrades. Even fun stuff like non-motorized trails, bike lanes and street lighting are included. You can read the newest Draft online and attend a Public Hearing and give your input, Thursday, January 4th at 7 p.m. in the City Council Chambers.

Ann Arbor Now Offers Online Property Tax Payments

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Save time and stamps by paying your A2 property taxes online. There are no additional fees for using the ACH online option. Want to find out more about your property? Check out the city’s Assessment and Property Tax Data site and the county’s Property/Parcel Lookup site. You’ll find plenty of data including assessment history, sales history, parcel description and more.

Public Parking Workshop

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The Downtown Development Authority will hold a Community Workshop on Wednesday, Dec. 6th, 6-8 p.m. to discuss a comprehensive strategy for downtown parking. Citizens are invited to participate in the open meeting in the Community Room of the DTE Building, 425 S. Main Street.

Civic Lessons

Could you pass the new Pilot Naturalization Exam? The U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Service has redesigned the test to focus on the principles of our nation rather than recitation of facts. The library has many resources to help guide you through the citizenship process.

What's the outlook for regional rapid transit?

SEMCOG, the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, will hold public meetings next week to discuss five proposals emerging from the 'Ann Arbor to Detroit Transit Study' which outlines rapid transit alternatives for the area. The Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti area meeting will be held at Washtenaw Community College (Morris Lawrence Building, Room 103) 4800 East Huron River Drive on Monday, December 4 from 4:30 to 8:00 p.m. The organization is seeking public comment on the proposals. Additional background to the proposals is also available at the SEMCOG site.
This is a good time to become informed and make your voice heard on a vital regional issue for commuters and the economy.

Bag Those Leaves!

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Weekly curbside collection of residential yard waste compostables ends next Friday, Dec. 1st. If you don’t have time to make the deadline but still have leaves to get out of the way before we’re buried in snow, take them to the Drop Off Station for only $2 a bag. And don’t forget, due to Thanksgiving, trash collections will occur one day later than the usual weekly collection date.

That Growling in Your Stomach

Is NOT, repeat NOT hunger, according to the Committee on National Statistics. Instead, 35 million Americans last year experienced “low food security” and 10.8 million experienced “very low food security” per the 2005 Household Food Security in the United States report by the USDA. “Hunger” has been banished from the federal government lexicon as “too amorphous.” The U.S. Conference of Mayors, however, continues to count hungry people as “hungry.” Look for their new report in early December. Speaking of banished words, check out the annual lists of banished words from Lakes Superior State College.

Historic Preservation – The Revised Edition

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The City of Ann Arbor is holding public meetings to discuss proposed revisions to the Historic Preservation ordinance, Chapter 103. The meetings will be held on Thursday, Nov. 16th at 7 p.m. in the City Council Chambers and Tuesday, Nov. 28 at 7 p.m. at Bach Elementary School. The meetings will explain the proposed changes, how they will affect our community and provide an opportunity for residents to comment on the draft ordinance.

Give 'Em a Gold Star

The City of Ann Arbor took home a 2006 Gold Star from Michigan’s Promoting Active Communities Collaborative for encouraging residents to get out and get moving. Our favorite reason Ann Arbor won? The Border-to-Border Trail that links AA with Ypsi and beyond. The City also won for making Getting Downtown healthy for you and the environment. Congratulations.

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