Kick off 2018 with Stock Show, MLK Day parades

Two upcoming parades celebrate the rich heritage and traditions of Fort Worth. You won’t want to miss these events:

Fort Worth Stock Show Parade

The Fort Worth Stock Show’s All Western Parade is scheduled for 11 a.m. Jan. 13 in downtown Fort Worth. Nearly 100,000 spectators line the streets of downtown Cowtown to watch this spectacular annual event. Plenty of horses and other livestock can be seen — but no motorized vehicles are allowed.

The parade starts at the corner of Weatherford and Main streets and ends at Houston and Bluff streets.

To reserve parade seating, contact the ticket office at 817-877-2420 and keep your seat ticket because it also serves as general admission to the Stock Show grounds any day during the 23-day run (rodeo performances are not included).

Learn about all the western activities coming up at the Stock Show, Jan. 12-Feb. 3.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade

Fort Worth’s annual tribute to civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. steps off at 11 a.m. Jan. 15.

The parade begins at Ninth and Commerce streets, heads west on Ninth Street, north on Houston Street, east on Weatherford Street, south on Main Street before ending with a rally at Sundance Square Plaza. Learn more.

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Fort Worth Bike Sharing racks up strong numbers in 2017

Fort Worth Bike Sharing continues to roll up impressive numbers as it moves into its fifth year.

Some 2017 statistics for the program:

  • 59,280 trips, up from 55,841 in 2016.
  • 266,648 miles, down from 286,149 in 2016.
  • 252,153 carbon offsets. (A carbon offset is a reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide or greenhouse gases made to compensate for or to offset an emission made elsewhere.)
  • 10.6 million calories burned.

Currently there are 46 stations in the system, and 350 bicycles.

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Clinic provides legal advice for would-be entrepreneurs

Are you a budding entrepreneur? Get help with sticky legal issues from Texas A&M School of Law students as you get your business off the ground.

The Entrepreneurship Law Clinic at Texas A&M University School of Law helps clients who have limited financial resources start, organize and develop their business. In this clinic, student attorneys help determine what kind of legal entity is right for each client’s situation. The student attorneys then assist with the paperwork and transactions required to establish or develop a business, whether that business is for-profit or nonprofit. The clinic also provides assistance in strategizing, negotiating and drafting organizational and operational agreements.

Law students assist clients in establishing and organizing business entities under these legal structures:

  • Corporations (S and C).
  • Limited liability companies.
  • Partnerships.
  • Joint ventures.
  • Sole proprietorships.
  • Nonprofit corporations.

All work performed by student attorneys is under the direction of experienced faculty, who are leading practitioners in the community.

Anyone with limited financial resources in need of legal counsel related to forming organizing or developing a business is encouraged to apply. The clinic generally represents individuals and businesses with incomes no greater than 300 percent of the federal poverty level. Clients are selected based on a variety of factors, including financial need, educational value to the law students, potential impact on society or communities, and timing.

Although services are provided free by the student attorneys and their supervisors, clients are responsible for certain fees and other costs that may be necessary. For example, clients are responsible for the fees to register a company in Texas or another state. All fees will be paid directly to the particular state or other governing body by the client.

Request assistance from the clinic.

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Special Needs Assistance Program aids the entire community

A man-made accident, terrorist act or severe weather disaster can strike quickly and without warning. All Fort Worth residents should know what to do and quickly move to shelter in these situations, but residents with a disability can find it especially difficult to get out of harm’s way.

According to the July 2016 U.S. Census Quick Facts Report, 7.8 percent of Fort Worth residents under the age of 65 were reported to have some type of disability. That is more than 66,000 Fort Worth residents, and that number grows substantially when you add in residents 65 and older.

That is why the City of Fort Worth hosts the Special Needs Assistance Program (SNAP).

This SNAP program is not federal food stamps, but a local database that contains information about residents with disabilities who may not be able to evacuate their homes, or simply want to provide advance information on their disability to emergency first responders.

SNAP registration is available in English and Spanish, does not define or limit what a disability would be, is free to all Fort Worth residents and should be reviewed annually to keep information current.

Register online, call the Office of Emergency Management at 817-392-6170 or mail a registration request including name and contact information to: Office of Emergency Management, 200 Texas St., Fort Worth, TX 76102.

Emergency management personnel will assist residents with phone and mail registration.

Information provided in the SNAP program helps emergency management personnel plan for future disasters and provides advance knowledge of the resident’s specific disability to emergency first responders after a disaster or 911 call.

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Construction coming to northside neighborhoods

Water, sewer and street improvements are scheduled for 10 street segments in the northside area of Fort Worth. Existing water and sewer lines are being replaced and the streets rehabilitated. Affected streets and alleyways include:

  • Northwest 23rd Street from Lincoln Avenue to Columbus Avenue.
  • Northwest 24th Street from Ephriham Avenue to Grayson Avenue.
  • Northwest 24th Street from Lydon Avenue to Robinson Street.
  • Northwest Eighth Street from Rock Island Street to McCandless Street.
  • Northwest 30th Street from Angle Avenue to Chestnut Avenue.
  • Northwest 31st Street from Rock Island Street to McCandless Street.
  • Chestnut Avenue from Loraine Street to Northwest 30th Street.
  • Market Avenue from Northwest 28th Street to Northwest Loraine Street.
  • McKinley Avenue from Northwest 23rd Street to Azle Avenue.
  • McKinley Avenue from Northwest 29th Street to Northwest 30th Street.

To find out more about the project, make plans to attend the community meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Jan. 17 at the North Tri-Ethnic Community Center, 2950 Roosevelt Ave.

To learn more, contact Project Manager Mary Hanna at 817-392-5565.

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How to dispose of live Christmas trees

Live Christmas trees may have added warmth and vitality to your home during the holiday season, but now they’re kicked to the curb…and that’s where the city’s Solid Waste Services comes in.

Live Christmas trees are biodegradable, which means they can be easily reused or recycled for mulch. These trees can be disposed of as part of the normal weekly yard waste pickup following the holidays, or residents can take the trees to any of the city’s four drop-off stations between 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday. (Stations will be closed on New Year’s Day.)

  • 2400 Brennan Ave.
  • 5150 Martin Luther King Freeway.
  • 6260 Old Hemphill Road.
  • 301 Hillshire Drive.

Note: Drop-off stations will be closed on New Year’s Day.

Trees must be less than eight feet long, and should be cut into two pieces if necessary. Be sure to take all your decorations, lights and tree stands off of the tree before you place it on the curb.

Do not put the tree in a plastic bag.

Flocked trees are accepted, but artificial trees are not accepted for yard waste collection.

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Movies That Matter to screen 'I Am Not Your Negro'

Movies That Matter, a film series program managed by the City of Fort Worth’s Human Relations Commission, will present I Am Not Your Negro at 7 p.m. Jan. 11 at Fort Worth Botanic Garden Center, 3220 Botanic Garden Blvd.

A reception will precede the film at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, and reservations can be made online.

I Am Not Your Negro is a radical, up-to-the-minute examination of race in America. It’s a journey into black history that connects the past of the Civil Rights movement to the present of #BlackLivesMatter.

Movies That Matter was created in 2010 as a way to create awareness in the community about human rights issues affecting people in Fort Worth and worldwide. The series presents human rights-related film screenings and moderated discussions.

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Fort Worth partners with Strava to make commuting better

The City of Fort Worth has partnered with Strava Metro, allowing users to record their human-powered travels and then have the routes compiled anonymously with millions of other Strava members. Metro aggregates that data and then works with city planners and advocates to improve commuting in Fort Worth.

By uploading commutes to Strava, transportation planners can determine what infrastructure is effective and what is problematic, providing a powerful tool for making improvements and creating better bike lanes, multi-use paths and car-free streets.

But, Strava Metro is only as good as the data that users provide to it. So download Strava for free on your phone or sign up online and start making your commutes count toward a safer and stress-free future.

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Water, sewer rates changing in January

Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, average Fort Worth residential customers will see a $3.31 monthly increase in their combined water and sewer bill.

With the changes, the average customer will pay about $2.09 a day for water and sewer service. The complete list of current 2017 water rates and future 2018 rates is available online.

The changes to both water and sewer rates affect both the fixed monthly charge, which is based on meter size, and the volume rates. There is a small decrease in volume rates for some classes or tiers within classes.

For residential water customers, the rates for the first tier remain the same as the current rate, while the rates for the other three tiers increase. The adopted rates continue the multiyear plan to adjust the fixed/variable revenue ratio to improve revenue stability. This results in an increase in the water monthly service charge for all customers and an increase in the sewer monthly service charge for all but those with the two smallest meter sizes. These smaller sizes are primarily on residential accounts.

The Water Department’s FY2018 water and sewer budget is $19,349,105, or 4.5 percent more than the FY2017 budget. The categories with the largest increases are cash financing of capital projects and debt service, personnel and contractual costs, professional services, vehicle and equipment purchases, transfers to the General Fund, residential meters and chemical purchases.

The city’s growth and maintenance on aging water and wastewater facilities are factors for the increases in several categories.

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