Last Friday I received my bi-weekly e-mail from the City of Grand Junction containing a link to the agendas for the following week’s City Council meetings and workshops.
This week’s listing included a “special workshop” for City Council tomorrow afternoon at 11:30, with a single, two-word agenda item – “Stadium Discussion”. This sounds like a continuation of the workshop conducted two months ago, where Jamie Hamilton, Chairman of the JUCO Committee, outlined his group’s need for City assistance in obtaining funds to remodel Suplizio Field. I’ve written about this already.
Later that afternoon I received an e-mail from Grand Valley Peace and Justice, inviting me to a work session at the Homeward Bound shelter on North Avenue at Noon tomorrow. The purpose of the workshop is to update the 2001 document Grand Junction’s Response to Homelessness, and develop work groups to fashion a 10-year plan using information gleaned from the “Beyond Charity” brainstorming session conducted in May, which I also wrote about.
I was sort of amused at the coincidental timing of these two gatherings, considering that they each deal with subjects that some in the community consider essential to maintaining Grand Junction’s quality of life. I may not agree with some of those perspectives, but considering that Council is committing another afternoon session so soon to discuss the refitting of Suplizio and the salvation of JUCO in GJ for the foreseeable future, I guess it is what it is.
At the same time, literally, those who commit themselves to helping the varying facets of Grand Junction’s homeless community find assistance, shelter, and perhaps a way up and out of their predicament will attempt to marshal their at times disparate resources to find common ground, prioritize the need, and hopefully begin to map a coordinated effort that will be both effective and efficient.
The Daily Sentinel, which initially did not report on this activity, deserves credit for their story today that showcases the Grand Junction Housing Authority’s grant program to help homeless families with security deposits and other fees associated with rental housing. The comments attached to the online version of this story reflect both the best and worst of our community’s attitude toward the problem.
I’ll be on North Avenue tomorrow. I hope that the media will continue what appears to be a recent trend of reporting on some aspects of the homeless issue, as well as maintaining a presence with City Council, while they discuss an entirely different “community need”. I’m wondering how many of the poison-keyboard-equipped trolls that frequent the Sentinel’s comment system will be at the ready when more about a new stadium appears in the paper.
For me, I will defer to Delta-area blogger Robert Laitres, part of the Bagel Street Irregulars blog at the GJ Free Press website, who summed up the paradoxical behavior of some in our area rather well in a thoughtful post from last week.
Have a good evening.