July 2015

Mary Beth's Memo

Table of Contents
Meet with Mary Beth
In-District Office Hours
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

July 2
Cafe Steep
Albion and E 8th Ave.

July 9
Centerpoint West Community Room
Centerpoint Community Center
595. S Clinton St

July 16
Einstein Bros Bagels  
Lowry Town Center
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Council District 5


Council Aides:
Genny Kline
Luke Palmisano


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My Second Term Priorities
Dear Friends,

Thank you for re-electing me to serve as your Councilwoman. I will continue to work diligently for our district and for all of Denver to meet the challenges we face and celebrate what we love about Denver.

Here are some issues that I plan to work on over the next four years. I have spoken at length in this newsletter, at community forums and in the press on the inadequacy of Denver’s intra-transit system. While we have a wonderful build-out of our light rail system, these routes are for the long-haul and predominantly serve to relieve suburban traffic to and from the city. But it doesn’t meet our short-haul needs for our daily lives. I have spoken about on-demand transit that I am trying to bring to Denver but am also investigating the potential for a Denver Transit Authority to manage our intra-city needs, working with the Public Utilities Commission to make our existing system better, and exploring other means such as bus rapid transit (BRT) lanes on our busiest streets.

I also continue to investigate the on-demand or sharing economy. We are currently discussing short-term rentals and are working towards reaching some sort of resolution in the next six to twelve months. We plan also to take a hard look at worker issues, economic development, and making Denver’s growing on-demand economy work for all our citizens. I look forward to engaging our new council members on these issues.

Other important work for the next four years is making Denver a more pedestrian and bicycle friendly city. Many of our neighborhoods were built without sidewalks, as if we would never walk anywhere again, and I often hear from neighbors how they wish their neighborhood had sidewalks. There is no easy solution since property owners are responsible for building and maintaining sidewalks in Denver. However, I hope to find a way to make that responsibility less onerous. Our bicycle infrastructure is expanding but more can be done. Our neighborhoods can be built in a way that works not only for pedestrians and bicyclists but for automobile traffic as well. There is a middle path.

Our city increasingly lacks affordable housing. We are too quickly becoming a city in which much of our workforce cannot afford to live. I live in a city because I love its diversity of places, housing, income, culture and ideas. It is what makes us vibrant and keeps us as one of the premier destination cities in the world. I plan on spending time tackling the issues of diverse and affordable housing in Denver.

As always I welcome citizen participation and ideas from neighbors. Please feel free to contact my office or visit me at my office hours to share feedback, ask questions, and make suggestions. Your ideas are what power our innovation, creativity, growth, and quality of life.

Renter Resources

Many District 5 residents are having a hard time finding rental housing.  From those who are being “priced out” of apartments they have rented for years, to seniors looking to downsize, Denver residents are challenged to find a place to rent. The Colorado Apartment Association has partnered with the Colorado Association of Realtors, the Colorado Housing Finance Authority, Colorado Housing Connects, and the Colorado Division of Housing to produce the Colorado Financial Housing Assistance Guide. This guide lists over 100 agencies, non-profits and charitable organizations in Colorado that offer resources to those in need of assistance. Click here to download the guide. At the link you will also find the Renter’s Rights and Responsibilities Guide.  

REMINDER: Council Dist. 5 Boundaries Change on July 20

As many of you know, in 2011 City Council undertook the arduous task of redrawing the Council District boundaries for Denver. Redistricting is required to be done every ten years and it is based on the most recent U.S. Census data. Denver’s Charter says the city’s population must be as evenly divided among the eleven Council Districts as possible. Effective Monday, July 20th, the boundaries of Council District 5 will change. 

Though most of the district won’t be impacted, there are a few boundary changes to note:
  • Constituents north of Colfax Avenue will now be in Councilman Chris Herndon’s Council District 8. 
  • The northwestern boundary of the district will extend to Colorado Boulevard – encompassing the entire Bellevue-Hale neighborhood.
  • On the southern edge of the district, residents between South Oneida Street and South Quebec Street and East Exposition Avenue and Leetsdale Drive will be a part of Councilman-elect Paul Kashmann’s Council District 6.
  • Also on the southern edge, District 5 (west of South Oneida Street) will expand south to East Tennessee Avenue and Vale Drive.
Councilman-elect Kashmann, Councilman Herndon and I will work diligently together to serve the interests in our shared neighborhoods. You can see a map of the new district here. You can also plug in your address to find your district.

Westerly Creek Project Update

Last month about 50 community members and stakeholders attended a community meeting to review preliminary plans for improvements to Westerly Creek in East Montclair. Many community members expressed concerns about safety at street crossings, a need for increased lighting and a need to educate people about the dangers that could result from heavy rains and flooding. The Westerly Creek project team received positive feedback about the channel and trail concept and took suggestions on other design items including seating, art, landscaping, and safety. A follow up meeting is tentatively scheduled for September where the project team will show revised plans based on feedback and suggests received. Check back here for more details about this upcoming meeting.

Give Denver Collecting School Supplies to Help Students in Need

Every student should begin the school year with the school supplies needed to be successful in class and GIVE Denver is seeking donations from the community to ensure children in need start the school year off on the right track through the annual Adopt-A-Student donation drive. GIVE Denver's annual Adopt-A-Student School Supply Drive begins July 1 and runs through July 31. The annual drive helps fill backpacks full of school supplies for hundreds of children each year.

People can donate to the Adopt-A-Student drive in three ways:

1. Adopt-A-Student: Sign up online to adopt a specific student(s) and GIVE Denver will email a school supply list for that child. Consider teaming up with colleagues, friends or family members to adopt a student(s) together. Register by July 31st at

2. Donate School Supplies: Help GIVE Denver fill backpacks by donating school supplies. School supply lists can be found at and donations can be dropped off at the GIVE Center.

3. Make a Monetary Donation: GIVE Denver will use monetary donations to shop for school supplies for students not matched with a donor. Send a check payable to Denver Human Services, or make payments online at

Donors are encouraged to register by July 31 to allow GIVE Denver time to distribute the supplies in advance of the start of the school year. Donors may drop off or mail donations to Denver Human Services c/o GIVE Denver, 1200 Federal Blvd., Denver, CO 80204.
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