Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Congress of Cities Hosts City Mobile Workhops

Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Congress of Cities Hosts City Mobile Workhops

Article excerpt

Following is a list of host city mobile workshops along with descriptions, dates and times that will be taking place during the Congress of Cities this December 9-13 in Nashville, Tennessee.

DRUG COURT PROGRAM

Substance Abuse Treatment Alternatives

In 1995, Nashville's criminal court judges became determined to do something about the repeat offenders cycling through their courts About 80 percent of the cases involved either drugs or alcohol. It was apparent to the judges that the recidivism rate for persons appearing before them with a chemical dependency problem was extremely high.

Their response was a residential treatment facility where criminals would serve time but also receive chemical dependency counseling, assistance for job training, medical attention and other care that could contribute to break the cycle of dependency and criminal activity.

Today the program has a five-year track record that has gained attention from cities across the United States with a desire to replicate residential treatment. While the national recidivism rate remains at almost 70 percent, Nashville has cut the repeat offender rate of criminal addicts to 13 percent.

Wednesday, December 10, 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Friday, December 12, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.

FEEL THE ENERGY

Metro Nashville's District Energy System

In 1999, Metro Nashville conducted a study to review Nashville's waste-to-energy plant. After finding that the cost of garbage disposal was too high and the plant's operations unreliable, a plan was created to phase out Nashville Thermal, which has operated since 1974.

In the summer of 2004, a new District Energy System, fueled by natural gas and electricity, will replace Nashville's trash incinerator. The DES system is projected to save Nashville nearly $67 million in its first 10 years of operation while also providing environmental advantages and opening 12 acres of riverfront property for desirable development.

Wednesday, December 10, 9 a.m.-Noon Friday, December 12, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.

NASHVILLE PUBLIC LIBRARY SYSTEM

A Library System For A New Century

This workshop will begin in the spectacular new main library building designed by Robert AM Stern Architects. Over the past four years, the Nashville Public Library System has been rejuvenated with new facilities, increased technology and programs that connect it to citizens in dynamic ways.

The Library System has the potential to impact a significant number of youngsters, reaching 150,000 children a year through its story times and program. The public library has undertaken an ambitious initiative, "Bringing Books to Life," to foster children's pre-school literacy.

The program, a collaboration among four affiliated United Way agencies and the public library, includes measurable results and is a model program that can be replicated in other communities.

Wednesday, December 10, 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Friday, December 12, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.

THE FUTURE BEGINS WITH YOUTH

The Mayor's Office of Children and Youth was created in July 2002 to improve communication, coordination and collaboration among government, nonprofit and private agencies serving Nashville's youngest citizens.

Initiatives sponsored by this new office include recruiting and coordinating community partners and volunteers to provide free immunizations and health screenings during kindergarten registration, developing a website--www.nashville.gov/mocy--featuring a collection of the latest, citywide trend data compiled from local and state agencies, and coordinating the formation of a new Nashville Youth Alliance to better support the city's young people.

This workshop will look at examples of how the City of Nashville has developed unique partnerships to ensure that Nashville's children and youth are healthy, safe, successful in school, and connected to caring adults, allowing them the opportunity to contribute to the progress of the city. …

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