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Bill Van Nimwegen - page 62

Bill Van Nimwegen has 635 articles published.

‘Water for Living’ Tops 10,000 Bottles

The fourth annual Water for Living drive has collected more than 10,000 bottles of water to help those in need in our community.

The drive, spearheaded this year by the United Way of Pinal County, is held each summer at several locations throughout the city with donations being distributed to area agencies.

The drive has drawn more than 330 cases of donations, allowing us to serve over 5,000 individuals. The Friends of Apache Junction contributed $250 toward water purchases and secured electrolyte product contributions from GU Energy Labs. Republic Services generously donated 60 cases to help keep residents hydrated as well.

The water drive also partnered with the Pinal County Sheriff’s office, and provided them with 20 cases of water to ensure their squad cars are fully stocked. The drive continues through the month of August.

    Locations for donations:

  • AJI Sporting Goods, 10444 E. Apache Trail
  • Apache Junction Chamber of Commerce, 567 Apache Trail
  • Apache Junction Public Library, 1177 N. Idaho Rd.
  • Aurora Place, 675 W. Broadway
  • Central Arizona Community College, 805 S. Idaho Rd.
  • Lost Dutchman Realty/True Guns, 1075 S. Idaho Rd #104, Apache Junction
  • Salvation Army, 605 E. Broadway Ave.
  • Western Lifestyle Realty, 940 Apache Trail

    Locations to pick up water:

  • Apache Junction Police Department, 1001 N. Idaho Rd
  • Apache Junction Food Bank, 575 N. Idaho Rd., #701
  • First Assembly of God, 651 N. Ocotillo Dr.
  • Gold Canyon United Methodist Church, 6640 S. Kings Ranch Rd.
  • Hope Women’s Center, 252 N. Ironwood Dr.
  • Veterans Center at Desert Chapel United Methodist, 462 N. Palo Verde Dr.
  • St. George Catholic Church, 300 E. 16th Ave.
  • Salvation Army, 605 E. Broadway Ave.
  • Community Alliance Against Family Abuse, 879 N. Plaza Dr., #101D
  • Genesis Project, 564 N. Idaho Rd.

Housing Rehab: Homeowners Wanted

There is still time to apply for federal funds—received by the city of Apache Junction—as part of the owner occupied housing rehabilitation program. The program provides deferred payment loans from $1,000 to $55,000 for heating, air conditioning, plumbing, roofs, ADA accessibility, code violations and health and safety issues.

Eligible applicants must be owner occupied homeowners who: • Own their home and property for a minimum of 1 year; • Reside within the city limits as a full time resident; and • Are at least 62 years old OR have a disability OR have children under the age of 18 living in the home

Applications are available online at www.ajcity.net/rehab; for pick-up at the Development Services Department, 300 E. Superstition Blvd.; or by mail. Call (480) 474-2635 to request a copy.

A Spanish version of the application is also available. Privacy is a priority and recipients of the program and information collected in the application process are held in strict confidentiality.

Information about the program including a chart to determine if you may be eligible can be found here.

Funds are distributed on a first come, first served basis. For more information, please contact Heather Patel at (480) 474-2635 or visit http://www.ajcity.net/rehab.

Neighborhood Partnerships

Want to learn more about your city? Have some questions about city programs, policies or procedures? Here is your chance to ask.

When the meetings are established, initial concerns and requested topics and speakers are solicited. City officials will provide a brief update and then field questions from residents in an interactive forum. Among those who attend include the mayor and members of council, representatives from various city departments, including the Police Department, the Parks and Recreation department and the Library. Representatives from the Superstition Fire District can also participate as well as the Apache Junction Unified School District or other community partners.

The meetings also provide an opportunity for neighbors to meet one another and enhances informed citizen participation in the future of the community.

To schedule a meeting with your community, please contact the Apache Junction Public Information Office at (480) 474-5080 or abravo@ajcity.net. To learn more about the program, visit www.ajcity.net/NPP.

AJ Couple Found Dead In Home

An elderly couple were found dead in their home in Apache Junction last Friday, June 23, and Pinal County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) investigators are saying the deaths may be heat related.

PCSO deputies were responding to a call from concerned neighbors in the Palmas Del Sol retirement community when they found Keith and Connie Cox in one of their sweltering rooms.

The deputies reported that fans were on high, but the air conditioning was not turned on.

Officials say that there was no evidence of foul play, and they are treating the deaths as heat-related until there are results from the medical examiner’s office.

Local temperatures last week exceeded 110° six days in a row and there have been 12 deaths reported in the region as possibly heat related.

There are resources available to help residents avoid suffering through the heat without respite.

Both SRP and APS will not shut off power for delinquent payments on days that the National Weather Service has issued excessive heat warnings. The utilities encourage customers to pay their bills, but say that they only need to contact their offices to avoid living without cooling.

In Apache Junction, a visit to the public library at 1177 N. Idaho Rd. is free and one of the Water for Living program stations. Another place to cool off and get water is at the Genesis Project, 564 N Idaho Rd.

Heat stoke is a very serious medical condition that happens when the body overheats and is unable to cool down without external help. The body’s natural temperature regulation process is overwhelmed by the external heat. The patient may suffer from throbbing headache; dizziness and light-headedness; lack of sweating; red, hot, and dry skin; muscle weakness or cramps; nausea and vomiting; rapid heartbeat, which may be either strong or weak; and rapid, shallow breathing.

AJPD Gets Grant from State

Apache Junction’s traffic division just purchased some new tools to assist in traffic enforcement thanks to a grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. Each officer assigned to the traffic division has been equipped with new LIDAR devices. The LTI 20-20 True Speed is one of the newest tools available to law enforcement. The new devises are a move from older technology which used RADAR to calculate the speed of a moving vehicle. LIDAR, which stands for Light Detection and Ranging, sends out specially timed pulses of light to a specifically selected target. The result is an extremely accurate measure of distance and speed. Officers are now able to accurately select a particular vehicle they want to measure from a group of vehicles traveling in close proximity. The officers have already been trained on the new devises and are using them in the field.
For more information, visit www.azgohs.gov/programs.

Overnight Work at New Fry’s

The City of Apache Junction Development Services department have told residents within 500 feet of the new Fry’s construction site of planned overnight activities last week and next month. The remaining times for overnight construction will occur midnight to 5 a.m. on July 6 and July 11.

The general contractor for the new Fry’s building has requested, as allowed in the City Code of Apache Junction, to work outside normal construction hours. During the summer, construction is permitted during the hours of 5 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Due to the excessive heat normal at this time of year, and the need to make one continuous pour of the interior floor, the city has granted an overnight construction noise permit to Campbell Development for the days and hours noted above.

In an effort to reduce noise, the contractor has relocated the truck washout area to the west side of the project site along Idaho Road and trucks will be exiting to Old West Highway near the new gas station. The majority of the activity will take place inside the walls of the new building, but concrete truck cleanout and other vehicular and equipment movement will occur outside the building. Back-up warning alarms on the cement trucks and other equipment cannot be turned off or disabled per health and safety regulations that protect workers on the job site.

The residents are being told if they have questions or concerns to contact the Code Compliance Hotline at (480) 474-5112.

Bullying Doesn’t Take Summer Off

Typically bullying is thought of as a school related problem. While school is out for summer, bullying doesn’t take a vacation. Bullying takes on different forms. Physical, verbal and social bullying have been going on since the dawn of time and where there are kids, there are likely to be bullies. Parks, public pools, malls, movie theaters or just about anywhere you find kids passing the time are places your child may encounter a bully. However during the summer, the place your child is most likely to be bullied is on social media.

Many kids these days prefer to entertain themselves in the digital world rather than going outside to play. Add to that the soaring temperatures, social media and video games played in the comfort of an air conditioned bedroom seem like a pleasant alternative to the summer heat. During the school year kids have regular contact with their friends but during the summer many teens depend on social media to keep in touch with what’s happening with their buddies. With kids spending more time on social media some may engage in cyber bullying type activities. Dealing with a bully can seem overwhelming but there are some steps you can take to keep your kid safe on the internet this summer.

Adhere to the social media website rules. Unbeknownst to a lot of grownups most social media web sites have age restrictions. In fact Facebook requires that you be at least 13-years-old to have an account with them. Many parents know about the policy and still allow their kids to violate it using false information to sign up. Responsible internet use is a learned behavior that begins with parents.

Identify what social media accounts your kids have. It’s not just about Facebook anymore. According to Statista.com; Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter are three of the most popular social media apps used by teens. Familiarize yourself with the apps so you know how they operate and what they do.

Obtain your kids’ user names and passwords and check in on them periodically. That’s not snooping, that’s parenting. You probably don’t have a problem peeking under their bed when they are not around so why wouldn’t you want to see what they’re doing online. Sometimes kids don’t report bullying because they are embarrassed. Sometimes they don’t report because they’re afraid that reporting it will only make the problem worse. Kids need guidance so it’s up to parents to stay up to date on what’s going on in the lives of their kids and a big part of a kid’s life is happening online. In addition as the parent you most likely own the device they use to access the internet and you probably pay for the connection. Ultimately, parents are responsible for their child’s internet activity. (Folks, we need to communicate with our children and get back to parenting)

Limit your child’s access to the internet. Too much idle time on social media can open the door to unwanted encounters. Most wireless routers allow you to set up restrictions for specific devices. Did you know there is free software apps that you can get to limit their online time? Make your expectations known to your children and take advantage of the technology that’s available to enforce your rules.

Block unwanted contacts on social media. A good way to avoid harassment over the web is to not interact with bullies. Bullies thrive on getting a reaction so sometimes just blocking them is enough to discourage them and end their interaction with your child.

If blocking the bully doesn’t work then reporting the user to the website’s system administrator is another route you may consider taking. The administrator can take several actions including suspending the bully’s access to the website. Social Media administrators are well aware of the pervasive problem of cyber bullying and have created methods for reporting and dealing with it.

In today’s digital world, cyber bullying can take on many different forms. Sometimes it can be difficult to escape and some bullies just won’t quit without involving the law. If you and your child are unable to make the harassment stop on your own then take legal action.
• Document and record all the activity.
• Print out the messages and take screen shots on your mobile phone.
• Do not under any circumstances delete the messages.

After documenting all of the activity there are basically two methods for handling the matter through the legal system. First you can call the police and request criminal charges for harassment. In addition you can take your documentation to the city or justice court and request an injunction against harassment.

Keep in mind, it’s virtually impossible these days to spend more than five minutes on social media without running into some offensive content and not every unpleasant encounter rises to the level of bullying. D.A.R.E. defines bullying as, “An aggressive, unwanted behavior used again and again to isolate, harm or control another person.” While some encounters may be unpleasant, if it is an isolated event or there is no specific threat made it can be difficult to build a criminal case for harassment.

Finally encourage your child to disengage from the internet. It’s hot out there but there is a life outside the web. If your children are bored and lacking creativity, visit the Apache Junction Parks and Recreation website for some alternative summer activities ideas.

Movies in the Park

Summer movie in the new Flatiron Park

The City of Apache Junction Parks & Recreation department has kicked off their Summer Movies in the Park series! Grab a blanket and some friends & family to enjoy a fun evening outside watching some great family movies. This free Movie Series will bring a hit movie one Saturday evening per month during the Summer out to Flatiron Community Park in downtown Apache Junction!

The final movie will take place on Saturday, August 12, and will feature The Lego Batman Movie. This animated, action family comedy movie features the Caped Crusader fighting bad guys in a world of Lego bricks!

Food Trucks will be on hand starting at 5:30 p.m. for these events. June will showcase the delicious delights from Old School Grub, Gary’s Desert Dogs, Red Rocket Ice Cream, and Roadside Concessions! In addition, Parks & Recreation will have Game Booths beginning at 6:00 p.m. and the Flatiron Park Splash Pad will be in full gear all evening for those looking to cool down out at the park!

Pre-Movie entertainment will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will lead straight into the featured film! For more information on this or other programs and services, please contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 480-983-2181 or visit our website at www.ajcity.net/parks.

True Guns Hits A Bullseye

True Guns owners Charlie Wise (left) and Larry Stover (right) are joined by salesman Dean Nordean (center) with a selection of long guns and hand guns.

“I guess I just love guns,” Larry Stover said when asked why he was opening True Guns. “My family was in law enforcement and there were always guys around who felt the same way.”

In March, Larry and his partner, Charlie Wise, stocked the display cases, filled the walls and opened True Guns at 1075 S. Idaho Rd., Suite 213 in Apache Junction. They celebrated their grand opening on June 3.

The 1,000 sq. ft. store currently has a respectable selection of new and used guns but Larry says “Right now, I’m putting all the profits into more inventory.”

“You can also order what’s not in the store at our website (TrueGuns.com),” says Charlie. “We are going to offer gun safety classes and conceal/carry instruction soon, it’s still in the planning stages.”

There is also a large selection of ammunition, paper targets and AR500 steel targets. A corner of the store is reserved for “True Ladies” where there is a selection of conceal/carry purses, non-lethal self-defense products and eye and ear protection.

True Guns is a member of the National Rifle Association and the store buys and trades used guns.
Store hours are Monday -Saturday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Visit them online at TrueGuns.com, like them on Facebook and Instagram, email them at sales@TrueGuns.com or call 480-982-3032 for more information.

CAC Hosts Arizona Advanced Technologies Corridor Industry Skills Summit

80+ college representatives and manufacturers participated

Central Arizona College Superstition Mountain Campus
By Angela Askey

In May, Central Arizona College hosted the Arizona Advanced Technologies Corridor Industry Skills Summit. More than 80 college representatives and manufacturers participated in the one day technology session.
Central Arizona College, Maricopa Community College District, and Pima Community College heard from companies such as Raytheon, Intel, Lucid Motors, Abbott Nutrition, Honeywell, and others. The industry leaders in the room represented more than 18,000 employees and more than 400 years of personal experience in the manufacturing industry.

A primary input from the industry leaders was their concern about finding the skilled workers on which their success relies. A special technology-enabled process captured every response from the event’s participants. In February, the three community college districts signed a charter to create a uniform curriculum to support the advanced manufacturing sector in Maricopa, Pinal and Pima counties, and the findings from this event are being used to inform that effort.

Trevor Stokes, Workforce Program Manager with the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity stated, “Industry partners were appreciative and provided kudos to the colleges for doing something out of the box to address their needs.” He added, “The value of the manufacturing sector to our economy cannot be overstated, and we are very optimistic about these developing partnerships.”

The group offered perspectives on the needed personal competencies and technical skills graduates should have as they enter the workforce and provided input as to what the curriculum should look like.

The group was able to draw some valuable conclusions:
1. Attitude and teamwork were identified as critical skills for every stage of a manufacturing career.
2. A large majority of participants are optimistic about the future of their industry in Arizona.
3. Manufacturing employers value personal and interpersonal skills like work ethic and verbal communication very highly, especially in entry-level positions.
4. The value of a manufacturing career is not only in the entry-level position, but also in the likelihood that with a little perseverance, an individual can move quickly into more sophisticated and much higher-paying roles.
5. The manufacturing career of the future will require a willingness to learn and develop expertise in multiple disciplines.
6. Certifications from the National Institute for Metalworking Skills are valued at every stage of career progression.

Following is a sampling of the questions asked during the session and the corresponding responses provided by industry leaders:

What is the single most critical factor in the success of a modern manufacturing company?


What skills are more necessary in today’s manufacturing environment than they were ten years ago? What will be more important ten years from now?

Overall, how would you describe your outlook on manufacturing/advanced technologies in Arizona?

Participants also were asked to profile their entry-level, mid-level and senior production positions in terms of the personal, foundational and technical skills needed to be successful. This exercise proved helpful in developing a baseline for the key skills and competencies required for each position level. It showed the importance of personal competencies and a willingness to learn and demonstrate team and project leadership. The ability to advance is shown to be based on technical skills.

For further information regarding the Arizona Advanced Technologies Corridor Industry Skills Summit please contact Trevor Stokes at trevor.stokes@oeo.az.gov or 602-771-0480.

 

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