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Drought crisis: winter water-saving awareness efforts ramped up<span><figure class="figure-credits left"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" /><figcaption> <p> © City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure> <p>The City is currently focusing its attention on making residents and water users aware of the need to build water reserves during the winter months, especially in light of the harsh summer that is expected. This means continuing to reduce water usage even though the weather is cooler and wetter. </p><p>Metro-wide, the City’s area-based mayoral committee members, as well as City staff, water inspectors and law enforcement officers, are continuing to spread the message of saving water even though it is winter. </p><span><figure class="figure-credits right"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" /><figcaption> <p>  © City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure></span><p>‘Our dam levels remain critically lower than usual during the start of the winter and we don’t know when we’ll get rainfall or how much rain will fall. We are worried that our water users will start to relax their efforts and use more water because it is winter. We have had many enquiries from members of the public asking us whether we are now out of the woods and whether water restrictions have been removed. We are therefore using all of our resources to spread the word that we must continue to save water while we have it, come rain or shine,’ said Councillor Ntsodo. </p><p>The City is envisioning stricter water restrictions. If implemented, Level 4b restrictions would help to adjust the water usage target downwards to 500 million litres of collective water use per day from the current target of 600 million litres per day. </p><span>​<figure class="figure-credits left"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" /><figcaption> <p>  © City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure></span></span>The City’s Water Resilience Task Team has been set up to boost the City’s response to drought, to ensure that acute water shortages are avoided, and to transform Cape Town’s water landscape into one that ultimately relies less on rainwater. <p>The City continues with all of its planned and proactive interventions, such as pressure reduction programmes and emergency work, as well as taking tough action on those who contravene the existing Level 4 restrictions. <br> <br>Residents can contact the City via email to <a href=""></a> for queries or to report contraventions of the water restrictions (evidence should be provided to assist the City’s enforcement efforts), or they can send an SMS to 31373.</p><p>For further information on how to adhere to the less than 100-litre usage requirement, residents should please visit the water restrictions page on the City’s website: <a href=""></a> </p><p><br>End</p>2017-06-27T22:00:00Z1
City set to start construction on new cemetery<p>​The City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department will start construction of the new Metro South-East Cemetery in Mfuleni in the coming weeks. A total of R22,2 million is intended to be spent on this project over the next four years, as well as several planned extensions to existing cemeteries.  </p><p>The City is under continuous pressure to provide burial space as it remains the preferred option over cremation (a 60/40 split) for many, based on cultural and religious beliefs. In 2016, there were 26 446 deaths recorded in Cape Town, resulting in approximately 13 500 burials in City-owned cemeteries. The rest were buried outside Cape Town or in private cemeteries, or cremated.</p><p>Currently, the City manages 40 cemeteries, as outlined in the <a href="" target="_blank">map</a>.   </p><p>‘We are in the difficult position of jockeying for land with other departments who are facing service delivery demands of their own, like provision of housing and community facilities. Ongoing provision of burial space in response to need remains a priority for the City, however we do ask that residents strongly consider cremation where cultural and religious beliefs do not preclude this. When loved ones have not specified how they would like to be interred, burial is often the default option. This choice needs to be more openly talked about among loved ones and preferences around how one would like to be laid to rest need to be recorded and communicated,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security; and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith.</p><p>As part of our commitment to being a responsive administration and in line with the Organisational Development and Transformation Plan, the City is working to ensure that it meets the needs of bereaved families. This includes:</p><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">availing nearly 70 000 graves in the last 12 years through infill development and extensions at existing cemeteries, but also new cemetery developments</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">the installation of two new cremators at Maitland Cemetery in February this year</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">pilot projects testing the feasibility of above-ground burial systems including a mausoleum in Maitland and modular grave units at Rusthof Cemetery  </div></li></ul><p>The planned Metro South-East Cemetery will make available 24 800 graves and the Vaalfontein Outspan Cemetery development will have capacity for just over 26 000 graves, alongside ongoing development of existing regional cemeteries like Atlantis and Welmoed.</p><p>‘Burial space is a challenge in most cities in the world and Cape Town is no exception. We are continually reassessing our approach and how we can improve, but ultimately we will have to start considering and implementing alternatives. Cremation is a simpler and more cost-effective alternative to burial. There’s evidence to suggest that more people are opting for it, but it’s not yet at a level to take pressure off the demand for burial space,’ added Alderman Smith.</p><span><div class="image-gallery-slider img-gal-1" id="img-gal-1" data-slides="3" data-slide="1" style="height:493.5px;"><div class="image-gallery-content" style="height:414px;">​​​​ <figure class="itemSlide slide-left slide-1"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" /> <figcaption class="image-slide-text" style="display:none;"> <p>    The City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department will start construction</p> </figcaption> </figure> <figure class="itemSlide slide-left slide-2"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" /> <figcaption class="image-slide-text" style="display:none;"> <p>   The City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department will start construction</p> </figcaption> </figure> <figure class="itemSlide slide-left slide-3"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" /> <figcaption class="image-slide-text" style="display:none;"> <p>   The City of Cape Town’s Recreation and Parks Department will start construction</p> </figcaption> </figure> </div><div class="image-gallery-control"><div class="image-gallery-caption"><p> <a title="title" href="#"> <b>Aerial view of Cape Town</b></a> - Loren ipsum dolor sit amet loren ipsum dolor sit amet Loren ipsum dolor sit amet.</p></div><div class="image-gallery-nav"><div class="nav-info">1 of 3</div><div class="slide-next"> <i class="icon arrow-white-next"></i> </div><div class="slide-prev"> <i class="icon arrow-white-prev"></i>​</div></div></div></div>​​</span><p> </p><p><strong>End</strong></p>2017-06-27T22:00:00Z1
City condemns vandalism of community hall during Joe Slovo protests<p>​Last night, 26 June 2017, protest action in Joe Slovo in Milnerton resulted in the burning of the City of Cape Town’s Joe Slovo community hall. The hall has been severely damaged and will be closed until further notice. </p><span>​<figure class="figure-credits right"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" style="width:461px;" /><figcaption> <p> <b>Damage to the Joe Slovo Hall</b><br>© City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure></span>The fire damage is extensive, resulting in almost all of the ceiling boards in the main hall being destroyed. These are now littering the floor of the hall. This is particularly hard to swallow when just yesterday the Recreation and Parks Department finished extensive repairs to all ceilings boards and doors in this facility after years of motivating for the funding for these repairs. <p> </p><p>No room within this facility was spared in this act of violence. The main hall and kitchen have both sustained substantial fire damage. Even the storeroom of the facility was burnt down, along with all of the recreation equipment stored within it. </p><p>Just last week this hall was humming with children at a series of Youth Day programmes and we had weeks of holiday programmes planned for winter. Now we have had to remove staff from the facility. This is extremely discouraging for our recreation staff. The City has spent years transforming this hall into one that the community can be proud of, where in any given week nearly 2 500 children and youth visit the centre for recreation programmes.</p><p>Regular programmes at the facility include aerobics, basketball, drama and crèche programmes. The centre also had a very popular gym.</p><p>The nearest community halls are the Summer Greens Hall and the Milnerton Hall and the City’s Recreation and Parks Department will accommodate users of the Joe Slovo Hall at these centres as far as possible.</p><p><strong></strong> </p><p><strong>End</strong></p><span>​</span><p> </p>2017-06-26T22:00:00Z1
City’s Traffic Service puts the squeeze on ‘pirate’ taxi operators<p>The City of Cape Town’s Traffic Service held a week-long operation in the southern peninsula, in association with the South African Police Service, Metro Police and Law Enforcement, in response to tensions in the taxi industry.</p><p>Officers impounded 74 vehicles during operations in Vrygrond, Westlake, Heathfield, Retreat, Steenberg, Muizenberg and Wynberg after drivers could not produce operating licences or were found to be operating in contravention of their operating licences. </p><p>They also served 23 warrants, released 13 motorists on a warning, and issued 3 377 fines for various offences. Of the 18 arrests, three were for outstanding warrants, 12 for driving while intoxicated, and one each for reckless and negligent driving, failing to obey a lawful instruction, and possession of a fraudulent driver’s licence.</p><p>‘Recently, tensions flared again in the Retreat/Vrygrond area between legal and illegal operators. Our staff saturated the area in response and, based on the statistics, the operation was a success. We’ll be keeping a close eye on the situation to ensure that everyone stays in their lane and to help prevent a repeat of the violence we’ve seen in the area in the past,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security; and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith.</p><p>The City’s Metro Police Department meanwhile arrested 89 suspects in the last week, including 71 for drunk driving. Officers also made arrests for drug possession (7) and various other offences, including possession of ammunition, possession of suspected stolen property, attempted murder, and assault on a police officer.</p><p>On Thursday 22 June 2017, Metro Police members were on general patrols when they were alerted to a Law Enforcement pursuit of a grey Mercedes Benz on Baden Powell Drive. Officers responded and spotted the vehicle heading towards the Capricorn traffic circle. When they arrived at the location, the suspects had abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot. An eyewitness gave officers a description of the suspects and the direction they were headed. Officers searched the area and found the two men, who were positively identified by the witness. Officers later found that the Mercedes was a stolen vehicle that had been used in an armed robbery in the Langa area, and that both suspects were wanted on charges of armed robbery, theft, and possession of an illegal firearm for incidents in Milnerton and Macassar. </p><p>‘This was exceptional work by the City’s enforcement services and I laud their dogged determination in tracking down the suspects when the odds of finding them were slim. Because of their commitment, two potentially dangerous criminals are off the streets. I also want to thank the eyewitness for his assistance. This case is an example of how the community and enforcement services can work together to make Cape Town safer,’ added Alderman Smith.<br></p>2017-06-25T22:00:00Z1




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