Clovis ‘posse’ aims to round up litter bugs

By Jack King: CNJ staff writer

Members of Clovis Pride told city commissioners Thursday they would be out in force on June 12 to help clean up the city.

Clovis Pride board member Len Vohs said the group — along with city employees — will form a “posse” that will go up and down city streets identifying houses, businesses, even city facilities that violate city codes governing litter and derelict buildings. They will then turn the names and addresses over to the city’s inspection division, which may issue citations, he said.

Vohs said Clovis Pride decided to take the action because residents have become more and more frustrated over the litter, abandoned vehicles and dilapidated buildings that clog some sites in the city.

“Clovis has got a problem and the problem is trash,” he said.

Clovis High School actors Kiko Velez, Charles Downing and Chance Shirley performed a short skit for the commission, as “Men In Black,” to illustrate Clovis Pride’s sense of mission about the clean up.

In other business:
n Parks and Recreation Director Rob Carter told the commission Potter Pool will not open on Memorial Day, as is usual, and probably not until the second week in June.

The delay is caused by problems in getting the pool cleaned in time and because of a shortage of lifeguards, he said.

Carter said the pool is encrusted with a black mold that requires an acid wash to clean, but, because of federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements, the Recreation Department was forced to hire a private contractor to do the work. The contractor cannot perform the job until May 30 and another two weeks will be required to get the water chemically balanced and get approval from the state Environment Department, he said.

Also, the department has received six applications for lifeguard position, but only two of the applicants are fully certified, he added.

This is the first year the Parks and Recreation Department has been fully responsible for the pool since taking over its management from Play Inc., he said.

City Commissioner Kevin Duncan asked Carter if the department couldn’t have begun preparing for the opening earlier in the year.

“I just want to know, from a taxpayer’s point of view, why these steps (to get the pool open on time) couldn’t have been taken,” he said.

Carter said delays from the OSHA regulations, which require workers to get a medical exam and be fitted with masks to protect them while working with the acid, were not anticipated. Filling the pool earlier in the year would have exposed the pipes to freezing and would have created a danger for children, he added.

n City Finance Director Don Clifton presented the council with a preliminary budget for the upcoming fiscal year. City budget discussions will begin in June and a final budget must go to the state Department of Finance and Administration by the end of July, he said.