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SPRINGFIELD -- City Council President Orlando Ramos is asking residents from around the city to volunteer to serve on two committees that will focus on environmental issues and dog parks.
Ramos said he is reactivating the council's Green Committee, chaired by newly elected Councilor Jesse Lederman, that will deal with environmental issues ranging from sources of pollution to energy efficiency measures.
He is also creating a Dog Park Committee chaired by Councilor Marcus Williams, that will explore creating dog parks in Springfield by considering potential locations as well as funding sources.
"We are recruiting people to be on these committees," Ramos said this week. "We want to spread the word to people who are interested in participating and serving on the committees."
Ramos recently announced his committee appointments, including several standing committees such as Finance and Public Safety. He also named some ad hoc committees but listed just the chairmen for the Green and Dog Park committees.
Lederman said he urged Ramos to keep the Green Committee in effect, believing it can still be a valuable resource for improving the environment.
"I think that especially in 2018, a focus on sustaining and improving our air quality can really be beneficial," Lederman said. "It can improve the quality of life, improve the health disparity, and I see it as an economic driver."
One of the topics could be expanding energy efficient lighting for city properties, Lederman said.
Ramos said he decided to create the new Dog Park Committee after noticing that there are a lot of dog owners and some have suggested the idea of dog parks. In addition, he noticed dog parks in many mid-size and large cities in the United States while traveling with his daughter.
Ramos said during his re-election as council president on Jan. 1, that the creation of dog parks in Springfield was one of his priorities in 2018.
Those residents who want to serve on either of the committees submit their names and background information to the City Council office at City Hall either by phone, or by email, or by letter, Ramos said. Any sent material could include a letter of interest and / or resume, he said.
The council office at City Hall is at 36 Court St., Springfield, 01103, Room 200, or can be reached by telephone at 787-6170. Residents can send information to Karla Bourassa at the council office at this email address email@example.com .
"It is an effort to continue my push for more participatory government and legislative process," Ramos said.