July 2018 Highlights

National Night Out is August 7:     Neighborhoods around Winston-Salem will join with thousands of communities around the nation in observing National Night Out this Tuesday, August 7.  National Night Out (NNO) is the annual celebration of neighborhoods’ partnership with local police departments to help keep our communities safe.  Events will include neighborhood gatherings, cookouts, and crime prevention presentations from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday evening.

Does your neighborhood have an event planned for that evening?  If so, please contact me at my phone or email noted above to let me know the time and place.  I always try to participate in as many of these positive events as possible.  This year, the 35th annual NNO citywide kickoff event in Winston-Salem will begin at 6 p.m. in the Pecan Ridge neighborhood at 4808 Abbey Park Road (the intersection of Pecan Ridge Circle and Pecan Forest Trail, for those of us who still look at a map instead of asking GPS for directions).

Business 40 work:     Construction-related closures continue this summer, as contractors complete the new bridge and interchange with Peters Creek Parkway in advance of the full closure of Business 40 from there to US 52 for 20 months starting in November.  Keep up with the latest on work schedules, planned lane closures, and other related information here:  www.business40nc.com 


Veterans Treatment Court:     The Forsyth Veterans Treatment Court is our local version of a national program to divert veterans charged with non-violent substance abuse offenses from criminal prosecution to targeted treatment and counseling programs.  Veterans successfully completing the program will have the original charges dismissed, and should be in a better position to deal successfully with their issues going forward.  The program is well-regarded nationally, and in Forsyth just graduated its first group of participants in July.  Unfortunately, the continuing funding of the program nationwide was disrupted by legal disputes between the Trump Administration and the states over unrelated additional conditions proposed on all Justice Department grants.  As a result, during the first participants’ completion event, it was announced that guaranteed funding for the program would end as of July 31.  Since that announcement, the state of North Carolina has arranged for program funding to be restarted as of October 1.  Some of the city council members (including myself) who attended the court’s event on July 18 announced that we would work to find stopgap funding to keep the court operating during August and September.  The city manager has identified a source of funds from which to obtain the $15,000 needed to maintain the operation of this important program for this two-month gap.  I commend the court staff who continued to work through uncertainty in order to maintain this valuable effort, and the city staff who identified how we can assist in that effort.  We all owe our veterans a debt of thanks, and helping with this program is one small way we can honor that obligation.

Miller Street sidewalk:     Work on the extension of the Miller Street sidewalk north to the Five Points intersection is expected to begin the week of August 6.  I will look to provide updates on the status of other approved Southwest Ward sidewalk projects in my August update.

Miller Park renovation continues:     Reconstruction of the second stone bridge over Miller Creek has begun.  The bridge is to be rebuilt in stone, and other than higher sides should be similar to the first one at that location in materials and appearance.  I also was recently asked about a small building near the bocce courts which has been removed.  That was a storage building.  Its replacement will have restrooms as well as a storage unit.

Street resurfacing:     A rough section of Jonestown Road just north of the bridge over I-40 will be among the city street sections included in the autumn street resurfacing contract.  Work is expected to begin on this contract in September.


School supplies giveaway:     Know a child or family who could use a hand with school supplies for this fall?  The Winston-Salem Police Department will host its annual school supplies giveaway this Friday, August 10, at 10 a.m., at the Winston Mutual Building on East 5th St., and at all three District Police Offices (7836 Northpoint Blvd., 1539 Waughtown St., and 2393 Winterhaven Ln.).  It’s one book bag with spiral notebooks and pencils per child in attendance.  Contact Sgt. S.A. Karboski at 336-403-8193 with any questions.

That’s my report for July.  As always, you are welcome to contact me with comments or questions at danbesse@danbesse.org.  Thanks!