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  • Human Infrastructure Connectivity Goals and Policies

    Human Infrastructure banner The Human Infrastructure Connectivity chapter addresses many aspects of human infrastructure for which the County is a service provider. These include:

    • health services;
    • public safety and emergency services;
    • climate resiliency;
    • parks and recreation;
    • workforce training/education;
    • library services;
    • animal care;
    • arts and entertainment; and
    • food access.
    These elements provide goals and policies related to the efficient provision of existing and future services needed to support the current and forecasted populations. While none are required by State Law to be addressed in a county comprehensive plan, they all play a significant part in how our County functions, they implement the overall vision and they each connect our people with each other on multiple levels.

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    5.1 graphic

    5.1 Health Services Element

    Health Services Delivery and Healthy Communities

    The choice and ability of Pima County residents to lead healthy lives emerged as a critical health priority from the recent community health assessment conducted by the Pima County Health Department. This priority encompasses behavioral, medical and public health concerns, access issues, and environmental factors that need to be addressed in an integrative manner in order to achieve healthy lifestyles. The goals and policies in this section address integrating health (both physical and mental) into all types of planning efforts, providing access to information and services, ensuring adequate health staffing, and uncovering relevant data.

    Goal 1: Promote and support healthy lifestyles for all Pima County residents

    Policy 1: Integrate healthy community concepts and principles into land use, social services, and infrastructure planning processes.
    Policy 2: Increase access to resources and healthy options that support physical health and wellness.
    Policy 3: Increase access to resources that support behavioral health and wellness.
    Policy 4: Increase access to interpersonal violence prevention programs and resources.
    Policy 5: Support a healthier environment and healthier lifestyles by providing green infrastructure and encouraging its use.
    Policy 6: Enhance employee wellness through programs and initiatives that support healthy lifestyles.
    Policy 7: Monitor and evaluate the direct and indirect effects of increasing temperatures on the health of Pima County residents.

    Goal 1 Implementation Measures:

    1. Identify facilities and programs available for physical activity.
    2. Promote physical activity among school-aged youth.
    3. Expand opportunities for urban agriculture.
    4. Solicit input from community stakeholders on physical activity and exercise.
    5. Create awareness of resources, programs, and training opportunities in behavioral health, especially for youth.
    6. Promote programs and resources that enhance interpersonal safety.
    7. Promote policies and programs that reduce public and street harassment.
    8. Incorporate Complete Streets principles into jurisdictional planning to make streets safe for all users.
    9. Integrate green infrastructure into capital and improvement projects (providing shade, mitigating heat island affects, and manage storm water issues).
    10. Promote importance of physical activity for enhanced employee wellness among employers.
    11. Work with employers to encourage and support employee engagement in wellness programs and initiatives.
    12. Promote policies and programs to reduce climate vulnerability of underserved communities.

    Goal 2: Promote health literacy to Pima County residents with emphasis on populations of need

    Policy 1: Increase public awareness of relevant and reliable health information resources.
    Policy 2: Enhance health literacy practices of health care (including behavioral health) and health information providers.
    Policy 3: Increase public awareness of and access to climate preparedness resources such as heat related illness, air quality, wildfires, insect-borne diseases, and extreme weather events.
    Policy 4: Promote neighborhood-level climate risk assessments and planning.

    Goal 2 Implementation measures:

    1. Identify health and climate literacy awareness and needs of health care providers and community members.
    2. Adopt health literacy guidelines and standards.
    3. Disseminate health and climate preparedness information and education resources to the community.
    4. Identify health literacy education and training materials for health care and health information providers.
    5. Promote health literacy education and training opportunities for health care and health information providers.
    6. Provide education and materials to neighborhoods to support neighborhood administered climate risk assessments.
    7. Support integrated strategies to mitigate climate risks to neighborhoods.

    Goal 3: Improve urban and rural community access to medical, behavioral, and specialty health care services in Pima County

    Policy 1: Increase community-level communication and information related to accessing medical, behavioral,and specialty health care services.

    Goal 3 Implementation measures:

    1. Identify populations that will not be covered by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), may be eligible for coverage under the ACA, but will have barriers to that coverage.
    2. Define barriers to accessing health care services and potential solutions.
    3. Disseminate information regarding the ACA to disparate populations and employers.

    Goal 4: Improve workforce development in the medical, behavioral, and specialty health care fields in Pima County

    Policy 1: Determine professional health care workforce requirements needed to meet current and future healthcare demands. *(also see Section 5.4)
    Policy 2: Continue to support the Pathways to Healthcare partnership between Pima Community College, Pima County One-Stop and local health care employers to train economically disadvantaged residents for health care careers.

    Goal 4 Implementation measures:

    1. Conduct analysis of current health care workforce status and projected workforce needs due to the ACA, including the root causes of shortages and the barriers to accessing health care services in Pima County.
    2. Work with the Primary Care Areas (PCA) and providers to address health care workforce development in Pima County.
    3. Leverage existing health care resources in Pima County to meet identified workforce demands and fill gaps in access.
    4. Grow and sustain a public health workforce that is prepared and knowledgeable.
    5. Provide education and resources to education health providers and emergency personnel about health-related aspects of climate variability, including risks for new vector-borne diseases.

    Goal 5: Improve the availability and accessibility of behavioral health care and crisis services

    Policy 1: Engage in community initiatives to ensure access to needed services for those experiencing acute psychiatric crisis or other immediate behavioral health need.
    Policy 2: Support integrated models of care that are evidence-based and integrate medical and psychiatric treatment of the whole person.
    Policy 3: Support investment to expand training of direct care workers through programs such as Caregiver Training Institute.

    Goal 5 Implementation measures:

    1. Increase diversion from Pima County Adult Detention Complex and Pima County Juvenile Detention Center for crisis and substance use detoxification.
    2. Increase utilization of the Crisis Response Center by adults and youth that limits emergency department visits.
    3. Coordinate with law enforcement officers resulting in improved return to service times following a behavioral health crisis intervention.
    4. Reduce the use of emergency transportation in response to behavioral health crisis.
    5. Achieve a reduction in civil commitment proceedings.
    6. Encourage coordination of care with the behavioral health network outpatient providers to limit length of stay in restrictive environments.
    7. Disseminate behavioral health resource information to medical providers.
    8. Ensure access to medical treatment by advocating for the coordination of care with primary care providers and medical facilities.
    9. Participate in community initiatives to promote behavioral health services careers.
    10. Leverage existing behavioral health infrastructure by innovative treatment opportunities.

    Goal 6: Address health disparities by promoting a better understanding of community assets, health conditions, and health status within Pima County

    Policy 1: Increase accessibility to data about community assets and health disparities.
    Policy 2: Facilitate inclusion of community asset and health disparities data in surveillance, priority setting, and action planning.
    Policy 3: Increase the community's safety awareness about the relationship between extreme heat events and indoor and outdoor health risks.

    Goal 6 Implementation Measures:

    1. Research and assess available public health data as well as other data systems (census data, behavioral health data, etc.).
    2. Study feasibility of creating an academic public partnership to collect, monitor, use and report data on community assets and health disparities including climate vulnerabilities that exist within Pima County.
    3. Describe community assets and health disparities as well as social and structural factors within Pima County, including behavioral health.
    4. Engage stakeholders, health coalitions and grassroots groups, and jurisdictional officials in data sharing and interpretation.
    5. Advocate for the use of community assets and health disparities data in priority setting and action planning.

    Provision of Services for Disease Prevention

    A major component of maintaining a healthy population in Pima County is ensuring that residents are either free of chronic and acute health conditions or have the ability to manage their chronic conditions. The County works to provide residents the opportunities to attain the highest potential of health by preventing disease, providing safe environments, and by promoting healthy choices.

    Goal 7: Support and provide disease prevention for the community.

    Policy 1: Promote overall wellness by providing access to:
    1. Chronic and communicable disease prevention including sexually transmitted and vaccine preventable infection, education and services;
    2. Nutrition, child/maternal health and family planning education and support;
    3. Alternative modes of transportation (walkways, trails and bike paths) that encourage exercise;
    4. Affordable transit, van, and shuttle services and other multi-modal options (walking and biking) to provide access to health care services; and
    5. Healthy foods.
    Policy 2: Promote wellness by supporting safe communities that include:
    1. Clean water and air;
    2. Robust prevention, surveillance and investigation of communicable disease, including zoonotic and vector-borne diseases;
    3. Smoke-free establishments;
    4. Complete streets with shade and gathering spaces to encourage walkability;
    5. Safe housing, food service establishments, and swimming pools;
    6. Safe neighborhoods and parks;
    7. Safe transportation systems;
    8. Locally-owned, small scale, humane farming operations; and
    9. Coordinated resources for poor and vulnerable individuals and families.

    Goal 7 Implementation Measures:

    1. Promote programs that improve the overall wellness of the community.
    2. Update development standards to include complete streets principles.
    3. Screen clients for insurance status and appropriately refer for enrollment assistance.
    4. Increase efforts to identify and solve community health problems in Pima County.
    5. Increase informational, educational, and empowerment efforts supporting public health issues in Pima County.
    6. Reduce incidence of injuries and zoonotic illness to animals.
    7. Become an accredited public health department.
    8. Deliver clear and consistent public health messages.
    9. Engage organizations that serve Pima County residents to address issues of health, safety, and well-being.
    10. Empower and support residents to take ownership of public health in their communities (e.g. neighborhoods, schools, childcare centers).
    11. Collaborate with stakeholders and partners to identify and increase resources to address health, safety, and well-being of residents.
    12. Continue county-wide efforts to coordinate programming to address poverty and safety net issues.
    13. Integrate climate change models in planning for insect-borne disease and other complex and compound climate related health risks to urban and rural communities.

    Goal 8: Assess and address the potential health impacts of policies, programs and projects to ensure that health is included in the decision-making process

    Policy 1: Conduct and utilize health impact assessments (HIA) as a tool for assessing the potential health impacts of public policies and publically-funded programs and projects under development in respective county departments. (See also Land Use Element Section 3.1, Goal 1, Policy 14)

    Goal 8 Implementation Measures:

    1. Promote use of Health Impact Assessments.
    2. Educate decision-makers on benefits of Health Impact Assessments.

    Goal 9: Support the needs of the Pima County's aging population

    Aging Healthy

    Pima County is home to more adults age 65 and older per capita than the state as a whole. It is important to prioritize the health, quality of life and well-being of older adults by encouraging healthy aging best practices. The Pima Council on Aging (PCOA) is the designated Area Agency on Aging serving older adults and their families living in Pima County.

    Pima County Health Department offers services to seniors. Health Department staff responds to nursing home outbreaks, provides wellness education to members on senior nutrition programs in Pima County, provides health coaching to seniors and their caregivers through the Chronic Disease Self-Management program, and provides adult vaccinations.

    This section's goals and policies promote the provision of necessary services to the older members of the community.

    Aging Health

    Policy 1: Continue to support Job Seekers age 50 and older through the Pima County 50 Plus Mature Worker program.

    Policy 2: Work collaboratively with the Pima Council on Aging (PCOA), other non-profit organizations, and County departments to support programs and strategies that promote dignity, respect and a healthy quality of life for aging adults by continuing to support and encourage:
    1. Livability in all aspects of life;
    2. Access to health care, services, healthy foods, work, education and amenities by supporting alternate modes of transportation (transit, van, shuttle, para-transit, walking, biking, etc.);
    3. Services for older adults, families, and caregivers;
    4. Care transitions programs (care at home following hospitalization), in-home support, hospice care and coordination, and family caregiver services;
    5. Advocacy programs;
    6. Information and referral helpline services staffed by trained professionals;
    7. Long-term care programs for assisted living and nursing home residents;
    8. Meals and nutrition programs;
    9. Programs to assist with difficult end of life planning;
    10. Personal budgeting assistance programs;
    11. Integration of quality affordable housing options in mixed-use and multifamily developments, in established walkable and safe neighborhoods, and in other types of new development;
    12. Opportunities for aging in-place;
    13. The development and dissemination of community-based initiatives on aging; and
    14. Improve awareness of and access to resources for extreme weather events such as heating and cooling stations, acute air quality alerts, and flooding.

    Goal 9 Implementation Measures:

    1. Review the Zoning Code to eliminate potential barriers to aging in place, and adding flexible zoning provisions to support multigenerational housing and additional residence for long term caregivers especially on rural lands of at least one acre.
    2. Adopt development standards for continuing care facilities that align with established State Standards.
    3. Work with PCOA and others to widely disseminate public information on programs/support for aging populations.
    4. Continue of offer 50 Plus Employability Skills seminars and coaching at Pima County One-Stop Career Centers.
    5. Coordinate with Pima County on Aging to identify funds to support a designated Planner for Senior Services and Programs position in Pima County.

    5.2 graphic

    5.2 Public Safety and Emergency Services Element

    Community Threats, Hazards and Emergency Preparedness

    The Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and the Public Health Department's Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program, engages in collaborative, community focused emergency health planning to address biological, chemical, radiological, or natural disaster events that result in public health threats and other emergencies. These goals and policies reflect those efforts.

    Goal 1: Support collaborative, community focused emergency planning

    Policy 1: Support existing health initiatives, programs, and the development of effective plans and resources to protect life and property from public health threats and other emergencies.
    Policy 2: Continue to implement and periodically update the Pima County Hazard Mitigation Plan.
    Policy 3: Continue to monitor and mitigate climate change and drought related socio-economic and public health impacts that decrease air and water quality.
    Policy 4: Integrate climate preparedness planning into Pima County Emergency Services planning including a response for acute climate events.

    Goal 1 Implementation Measures:

    a. Increase Pima County Health Department capacity to respond to public health emergencies.
    b. Integrate flood mitigation and response by expanding the Hazard Mitigation Plan to include specific flood response activities including area specific warning dissemination.
    c. Evaluate the community's level of preparedness for power outages triggered by extreme climate events and access results for implementation.
    d. Improve awareness of and access to resources for extreme weather events such as heating and cooling stations, acute air quality alerts, and flooding.

    Public Safety and Law Enforcement

    The Pima County Sheriff's Department is committed to the advanced strategies of community policing and the direct supervision, and management of its detention facilities. Both concepts involve the establishment of dynamic partnerships with citizens, communities, and other civic and criminal justice agencies working together toward common goals. The Pima County Sheriff's Department is a leader and facilitator in attaining the goals to overcome and solve community problems with innovative ideas on crime prevention, proactive inmate management strategies, and public safety resulting in lasting solutions, reduced fear, and a better life for the residents of Pima County.

    Goal 2: Create a safe environment through the support of public safety and law enforcement

    Policy 1: Support the Pima County Sheriff's Department programs, partnerships and crime prevention, proactive inmate management and public safety strategies to increase public safety and create a safe environment.
    Policy 2: Increase coordination between behavioral health and public safety professionals.

    Goal 2 Implementation Measures:

    1. Continue to support educational programs between the Sheriff’s Department and the Health Department to ensure best practices.
    2. Continue utilizing social media as a way to disseminate crime prevention tips and share information effectively with the community.
    3. Continue developing partnerships with the community and local businesses to gain support, cooperation and a better understanding of community-police relations.

    Fire Service

    Fire and ambulance services throughout Pima County are handled by either municipal fire departments, private providers or fire districts in the unincorporated county. The County is not a fire service or ambulance service provider. Service in the population areas vary. The fire services providers in the unincorporated county are either fire districts or voluntary subscription based. These policies encourage continued collaboration with fire districts.

    Goal 3: Ensure the provision of fire service for the unincorporated areas of the County

    Policy 1: Continue to support the various fire districts serving the planning areas' unincorporated population by:

    a) Ensuring safe and efficient access to fire trucks and other emergency vehicles;
    b) Continuing to encourage fire safety in the design of new residential and nonresidential construction.
    Policy 2: Continue to require all rezoning applications for an urban land use intensity category located within a rural or volunteer fire districts to include a letter from the local fire district or responding fire department acknowledging ability to provide adequate fire protection.
    Policy 3: Encourage fire districts to right size equipment to maneuver in compact areas and alternate street design or make accommodations to facilitate those designs.

    5.3 graphic

    5.3 Parks and Recreation Element

    Pima County identifies opportunities to provide parks and oversees management and operation of County parks and recreational facilities. The purpose of the County parks, recreation and trail system is to provide recreational, social, educational, and community development services, connect people with nature and improve the quality of life for County residents.

    Public parks and recreation facilities and programs include educational and fitness classes, sports teams and tournaments, entertainment events and fairs, and youth and senior services. These programs promote healthy communities and play a fundamental role in increasing physical activity. Through facilities, outdoor settings, and services provided, they support good health. These programs:

    • Help reduce obesity and incidence of chronic disease by providing opportunities for rigorous physical activity in a variety of forms;
    • Provide a connection to nature which studies demonstrate relieves stress levels, tightens interpersonal relationships, and improves mental health; and
    • Foster overall wellness and healthful habits.
    Community centers act as the social and civic hub for recreation, human services, elder care, youth programs, nutrition and a variety of other social service programs. The provision of these services in one place, such as a community center, may provide an integrated solution for service delivery in the unincorporated area of the County, especially serving rural areas.

    The County principally acquires parks and recreation facilities through county bonds and in-lieu residential development fees.

    This section's goals and policies are directed toward efficiently providing adequate and varied facilities that meet the community's needs and coordinating recreation and parks with economic development.

    Goal 1: Support healthy lifestyles through the provision of parks and recreation

    Policy 1: Promote the establishment of a comprehensive and integrated system of parks, plazas, and playgrounds, and a trails system that provides connectivity to residential areas, employment, services, schools, libraries, activity centers and other community amenities.
    Policy 2: Promote joint-use facilities that permit access to non-jurisdictionally operated parks and recreational facilities.
    Policy 3: Continue to provide a diverse range of park types, functions and recreational opportunities to meet the physical and social needs of county residents.
    Policy 4: Provide a range of quality recreation facilities that are well maintained, have adequate lighting, signage, hours of operation and represent the multi-ethnic and multicultural needs of the region.
    Policy 5: Promote park and facility design that discourages vandalism, deters crime, provides natural surveillance and creates a safe and comfortable environment.
    Policy 6: Continue to develop and maintain a comprehensive network of multi-use trails that enhance bicycle, equestrian and pedestrian connectivity throughout the region.
    Policy 7: Increase opportunities to incorporate green space as a part of the urban environment and decrease heat islands effect, improve biological diversity, and enhance property value and quality of life.
    Policy 8: Promote flexibility in the design and programming of public facilities to accommodate appropriately scaled recreation and open space.
    Policy 9: Explore opportunities for integrating community gardens, green houses, green roofs and gardening/permaculture education programs in parks and recreation facilities.

    Goal 1 Implementation Measures:

    1. Implement Level of Service Standards for parks and user-based and activity-based recreation.
    2. Expand and tailor recreational programs and services to meet evolving community needs.
    3. Improve access to open space and natural preserves for activities such as hiking, bird watching and interpretive experiences.
    4. Develop intergenerational recreation programs housed in community centers and designed to meet the specific needs of rural communities.
    5. Expand the number of parks served by reclaimed water and allow only limited use of turf in parks for sports fields, multi-use facilities, and other appropriate recreational amenities in conformance with the County's Sustainable Action Plan and all applicable sustainability standards such as water harvesting and the use of recycled water, etc.
    6. Address parks and recreation improvements and deficiencies identified in the Pima County Infrastructure Study.

    Goal 2: Strengthen Pima County's ability to efficiently and cost-effectively manage parks, recreation and open space

    Policy 1: Explore opportunities to efficiently and cost-effectively manage parks, recreation and open space, and conservation lands.
    Policy 2: Explore alternative funding sources to operate and maintain parks and recreation facilities.
    Policy 3: Prepare and adopt a parks and recreation master plan, and define adequate maintenance needs for parks and recreation facilities.

    Goal 2 Implementation Measures:

    1. Prepare a parks and recreation master plan, identifying traditional and non-traditional funding sources for operation and maintenance.

    Goal 3: Strategically align parks and recreation with economic development

    Recreation as a Tool for Economic Development

    Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation (NRPR) and Kino Sports Complex have sport fields for rent to public, youth and adult groups. These fields are rented out at a nominal rate to lessen the financial burden on sports leagues in the County.

    A countywide inventory of sports facilities was conducted by the Pima County Sports and Tourism authority in 2013. The Pima County Sports Facilities Assessment lays the foundation for a comprehensive plan for the development of sport and recreation facilities including the ability to host sports and other events. It assesses the existing sport and recreation infrastructure for a wide range of activities using two measures: (1) Providing recreational value to the citizens of Pima County; and (2) Enhancing regional, national, and international tourism. It aggregates the findings into a long-range development scenario.


    Policy 1: Implement the recommendations of the Pima County Sports Facilities Assessment to:
    a. Provide recreational value to the citizens of Pima County; and
    b. Enhance regional, national, and international tourism.
    Policy 2: Explore opportunities to better position the Stadium District/Kino Sports Complex as a tool for economic development.
    Policy 3: Promote the Loop as a regional attraction.

    Goal 3 Implementation Measures:

    1. Proactively market the Stadium District/Kino Sports Complex.
    2. Further develop and implement a master plan for the Kino Stadium complex that would allow for hotel development, commercial, restaurant and entertainment district activities including activity centers for youth.

    5.4 graphic

    5.4 Workforce Training/Education Element

    Workforce Training Role in Improving Services and Economy

    The Pima County Workforce Investment Board is authorized by the Department of Labor and appointed by the Pima County Board of Supervisors to provide recommendations on local workforce policy and oversight of the local One-Stop system that connects job seekers (job ready youth, adult, and dislocated workers) with employers, with a special focus on eligible local growth, high-demand industry occupations. The Pima County Workforce Investment Board pursues its vision of "Quality Jobs, Qualified Workers". The Pima County One-Stop Career Center administers funding and programs under the Workforce Investment Act and is part of the Arizona Workforce Connection, a statewide network of career centers.

    This element provides goals and policies related to the provision of workforce training/education services such as aligning job seekers and job training with where the jobs are, particularly high-paying jobs and working collaboratively to make this happen. The Economic Development element includes goals and policies related to the utilization of a skilled workforce as a tool for industry attraction and economic development. *(Also see Goal 4, Policy 1 on page 5.4)

    Goal 1: Connect eligible job-ready youth, adults and dislocated workers to local growth, high-demand industry occupations

    Policy 1: Assist people in obtaining jobs in strategic industry sectors.
    Policy 2: Support employers in finding and hiring qualified employees.
    Policy 3: Engage underrepresented labor pools by removing barriers to employment.
    Policy 4: Continue to support the County's adult and youth workforce training programs and their key role in improving services and the economy.
    Policy 5: Support new partnerships through Joint Technical Education Districts (JTED) and others to expand career technical education programs to high school aged youth to help build a skilled workforce by educating and training qualified workers, and specifically by:
    1. Encouraging industry to offer internship opportunities to complement career technical education;
    2. Fostering career exploration opportunities in Grades 7 through 9; and
    3. Facility sharing by JTED with high school students in the daytime and adults in the evening.
    Policy 6: Continue to strengthen partnerships with the Business Services Team and the Sun Corridor Inc., local Chambers of Commerce and other major trade groups to:
    1. Conduct outreach to local companies; and
    2. Conduct ongoing and ad-hoc industrial workforce needs service.
    Policy 7: Focus workforce investment needs on industry sectors that provide the preponderance of the regions high-paying jobs and/or that offer our region the greatest competitive advantage in the global economy including the following strategic sectors:
    1. Emerging technology/renewable resources;
    2. Aerospace/defense/manufacturing;
    3. Transportation/logistics;
    4. Healthcare/health science/bioscience;
    5. Border security and protective services; and
    6. Infrastructure.

    Goal 1 Implementation Measures:

    1. Maintain local support and pursue available grant funding for adult and youth training programs including:
      1. One-Stop Center;
      2. Sullivan Jackson Employment Center (SJEC);
      3. Kino Veterans' Workforce Center;
      4. Workforce GED Education programs;
      5. Youth and juvenile preparation for future workforce programs;
      6. Summer Youth Program;
      7. Las Artes Arts and Education Program; and
      8. Pledge-A-Job Program.
    2. Support investment for training of direct care workers through state approved training programs, such as the Caregiver Training Institute and other programs.
    3. Support training for high demand industry occupations.
    4. Engage industry partners in sector strategies to address workforce needs.

    5.5 graphic

    5.5 Arts and Entertainment Element

    County Role in Funding Arts and Entertainment

    The Tucson Pima Arts Council is the designated non-profit agency that ensures a return on the investment of public dollars in the arts. The arts are one of the most important and visible components of what makes Tucson and Pima County great, and have a significant impact on the regions' economy, sense of place, quality of life and attractiveness to 21st century industry and talent. Yet issues are mounting in sustaining the arts in the region. The region is well below the national average in funding the arts, 50% of Arizona schools have no funds for arts education and most arts organizations have either scaled back or disappeared. Preserving the rich diverse art community offerings while exploring new sources of funding will be an ongoing challenge.

    Pima County should capitalize on the market potential of the region's Creative Economy to grow jobs and wealth. Particular opportunities include: live music/entertainment; film; culinary arts; interior design and artisan practices rooted in Hispanic and Indigenous traditions, such as tile, furniture, wrought-iron, adobe etc.

    The incorporation of public art and entertainment venues enhances the public realm, instills a sense of community pride, increases safety and revitalizes. Public facilities and public buildings can serve communities as canvases for portraying the local history and celebrating our local identity, character, heritage and sense of place. Public gathering places with art and features such as murals, fountains, plazas and promenades articulate the unique meaning, value, and character of the physical and social form of our community. They create space for social intimacy, enhance our community's character or sense of place, and promote health and well-being. A community's sense of place is not a static concept. It evolves and develops over time, reflecting the spectrum of social values within and around the community.

    Art districts can also be successful tools for revitalization, redevelopment, economic development, and the establishment of healthy communities. Please also see Chapter 6, Section 6.5 Art Districts as Tools for Economic Development.

    Goal 1: Make art a fundamental component of our communities

    Policy 1: Let art happen.
    Policy 2: Involve artists early and often in the community design process so that every piece of sidewalk and every infrastructure component can be a piece of art.
    Policy 3: Remove barriers from codes and standards that potentially prohibit or limit art installation.

    Goal 2: Continue to support the provision and maintenance of County-wide public art

    Policy 1: Continue to require all capital projects to contribute one percent for public art, including maintenance of public art.
    Policy 2: Continue to support the Pima County Public Art Program and the Tucson Pima Arts Council (TPAC).
    Policy 3: Continue to inventory, assess and maintain all County public art.
    Policy 4: Support the ongoing maintenance of existing public art and the existing arts programs.
    Policy 5: Remove unnecessary barriers from codes and standards to allowing community-enriching entertainment events.

    Goals 1-2 Implementation Measures:

    1. Work collaboratively with the Pima County Public Art Program and the Tucson Pima Arts Council to secure funding to 1) support the ongoing maintenance of existing public art; and, 2) support the existing arts programs.
    2. Examine Zoning Code to reduce or eliminate barriers for public art.
    3. Evaluate the zoning code for unnecessary barriers to community-enriching entertainment events.

    5.6 graphic

    5.6 Library Services Element

    The Pima County Library enriches lives and builds community through opportunities to learn, know, interact, and grow. The Library's resources, community involvement, and leadership help people of all ages, from all walks of life, on their journey to reach their full potential. Embracing the principles that excellence must be defined locally, be attainable for library branches of any size, and be dynamic by nature, the Library provides free programs and services that make learning fun, transcends barriers, and improves lives.

    The Library's mission statement and the focus areas of its Community Impact Plan--Learn, Create and Connect--support its objectives:

    • Encourage every citizen's potential to be a learner, educator and collaborator;
    • Partner to create programs and spaces that reinforce creativity, increase productivity, and allow residents to support their community; and
    • Partner to create programs and spaces that foster opportunity, make connections and support the exchange of ideas.
    Pima County currently has 27 library branches that serve the County. The County library system is the first regional system of its kind in the state and provides significant beneficial services to the public, including employment and job training, and 21st century skill development for teens and adults.

    The goals and policies of the Library Services Element reflect the critical role libraries play in the community, support the Library's efforts, and encourage further collaboration with other service agencies.

    Goal 1: Support the library system as a vital community asset for the provision of a variety of services

    Policy 1: Support the library’s vital functions as a destination, place of discovery and an active partner in community building, employment and job training, technological breakthroughs and economic development.
    Policy 2: Explore the possibility of integrating the library with other community services and functions to create vital activity centers.
    Policy 3: Provide flexibility in programming to embrace the library’s emerging role as educational centers for new technologies and innovation.
    Policy 4: Support existing library initiatives, programs and collaborative resources; increasing access and educational opportunity, giving children a strong start in learning and providing places where all citizens, young and old can pursue learning in a collaborative, creative environment.

    Goal 1 Implementation Measures:

    1. Continue to build and maintain welcoming library or County facilities.
    2. Continue to provide workforce development programming.
    3. Create entrepreneurship and career development opportunities through library programs, services and partner agencies.
    4. Provide youth development opportunities to promote 21st century skills and alternative career pathways.
    5. Expand partnerships with other county departments to maximize services following the successful Library Nurse collaboration model with the Pima County Health Department.
    6. Research facility sharing models in future building projects with County departments and organizations.
    7. Leverage community partnerships to provide programs and services that address our mission and support the Learn, Create, Connect focus areas.
    8. Foster organizational partnerships to provide mentoring expertise to knowledge seekers.
    9. Provide technology infrastructure, support and training at a level that meets community needs demands.
    10. Seek grant opportunities to explore innovation.
    11. Design facilities with flexible spaces and technological infrastructure.
    12. Expand partnerships with key community early literacy providers.
    13. Maintain an adequate budget to provide for the needs of changing collections including the addition of electronic resources.

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    5.7 Animal Care Element

    Pima County operates an animal care facility, Pima Animal Care Center (PACC). A key characteristic of healthy communities is their support of responsible pet ownership. The National Institutes of Health and the Center for Disease Control's (CDC) Healthy Pets Healthy People Program have established the health benefits of animal companionship.

    The goals and policies of this element focus on supporting the direction in which the County's animal care facility is moving including their collaborative efforts with community rescue groups and volunteers, increasing the live release rate through a multitude of means, maximizing the efficient use of resources towards improving the animal welfare system in the community and fostering activities and events that recognize responsible animal ownership.

    Goal 1: Improve Pima County's animal care system including decreasing the number of homeless animals and becoming a more pet-friendly community

    Policy 1: Support and promote PACC and community efforts to increase:
    1. Low-cost spay and neuter programs;
    2. Responsible owner-retention of pets;
    3. The rehoming of pets into permanent, quality homes; and
    4. Live release rate.
    Policy 2: Support and promote efforts to educate the community regarding responsible pet ownership.
    Policy 3: Support the efforts of the Pima Alliance for Animal Welfare (PAAW) and local rescue groups and encourage collaborative efforts.
    Policy 4: Encourage a regional, cross-jurisdictional approach to addressing animal welfare problems.
    Policy 5: Target resources and programs to improve the animal welfare system to neighborhoods or areas that have a greater demand and/or need for PACC services.
    Policy 6: Support community events and activities that foster respect for animals, promote learning about animals, and recognize animal ownership responsibilities.

    Goal 1 Implementation Measures:

    1. Provide resources to implement, monitor, and evaluate PAAW’s programs including the Trap, Neuter, Return (TNR) program, the Elevating the Human/Animal Bond program, and the Community Adoption Event program.
    2. Work collaboratively with other local animal rescue groups and service providers on all facets to improve the community’s animal welfare system.
    3. Educate the community on responsible pet ownership including spaying and neutering through presentations to school kids, working with social service agencies, inmate pet care programs and other methods.
    4. Minimize unnecessary development review obstacles and costs for rescue groups to locate and operate related services.
    5. Communicate the financial and other benefits of preventing unwanted pets through spay/neuter programs compared to providing euthanasia services needed to address overpopulation.
    6. Educate other County field workers on how to recognize animal abuse and neglect activities and report them to PACC.
    7. Increase the number of pet owners who report they have an established primary veterinarian for each of their pets.
    8. Increase the availability of animal spay/neuter services.
    9. Increase licensing compliance by expanding awareness efforts.

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    5.8 Food Access Element

    The availability of safe, fresh, nutritious, and affordable food that is safely grown, processed and distributed is a key determinant of health, particularly among low-income or underserved populations. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) have identified the food environment and "food deserts" -- areas with limited access to affordable fresh food -- as critical issues to consider for public health. Improving the availability of fresh food and eliminating food deserts is accomplished by increasing the local production of healthy food and encouraging affordable distribution in previously underserved areas.

    The Pima County Health Department (PCHD) has partnered with numerous public and not-for-profit agencies to enhance local production of healthy food and affordable distribution. Several of these efforts include establishment of home, school and community gardens, enhancement of gardening cooperatives, support of urban agriculture and livestock, and partnerships to advance farmers markets and farm stands in underserved areas as well as the WIC (Women, Infant and Children) voucher program funded through the U. S. Department of Agriculture.

    The goals and policies of this element address removing obstacles for local markets to prosper, encouraging collaboration among participants, and using tools such as Health Impact Assessments to evaluate efforts.

    Goal 1: Enhance the local production, processing, and affordable distribution of healthy foods

    Policy 1: Work collaboratively among County departments, the University of Arizona, UA/Pima County Cooperative Extension Service, community organizations such as food banks, 4-H and Future Farmers of America and others to secure the availability of healthy affordable food and eliminate food deserts by encouraging, supporting and removing barriers to:
    1. The establishment of home and community gardens;
    2. The enhancement of gardening cooperatives;
    3. Urban agriculture and livestock and small-scale community agriculture, including modernizing code definitions of livestock and equities in species types and sizes;
    4. Traditional farming, agriculture and livestock;
    5. Greater capacity in the County zoning code for plant processing and local, humane meat processing operations;
    6. Partnerships to develop regional food hubs, as may be needed, and to advance foodmobiles, farmers markets, farm stands and kitchen incubator facilities in under-served areas;
    7. Access to healthy foods at a neighborhood level accessible via walking or biking;
    8. Contained farming, hydroponics, permaculture and greenhouses;
    9. Mobile healthy food options for rural areas with little or no access to healthy foods;
    10. Vegetable roof gardens appropriate for desert climates;
    11. Cultivation and distribution of organic produce;
    12. Continue to provide a free source of local seeds and education through Pima County Public Library's Seed Library and gardening/sustainability programming;
    13. Reasonable accommodation in the zoning code for youth oriented life skills programs in agriculture, such as 4-H.
    Policy 2: Explore the provision of incentives for retailers providing access to healthy foods.

    Goal 2: Measure the health impacts of policies, programs and projects to ensure affordable access to healthy foods

    Policy 1: Utilize health impact assessments (HIA) as a tool for measuring the health impacts of public and publically funded policies, programs and projects.

    Goal 1 and 2 Implementation Measures:

    1. Identify and reduce regulatory barriers to all manner of the processing and distribution of healthy foods.
    2. Prepare a Health Impact Assessment (HIA).

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