Newsbriefs March 12

by Laura Turner

Atlanta Launches Job Matching Platform

Atlanta has embarked on a public-private partnership focused on connecting local businesses with city residents seeking positions across all industries at all levels of employment. The City of Atlanta Jobs Platform supports the Hire Atlanta initiative and is free and available to any firm hiring in the city.

The online platform will help bridge the gap between the jobs residents are seeking and the positions available, said Mayor Kasim Reed. "With more than 85,000 job listings on this new platform, this is just one of the ways we are using technology in an innovative way to keep Atlanta working."

The technology delivers relevant job listings to job seekers via their preferred medium - Facebook, Twitter, e-mail or mobile. Employers using the platform gain the opportunity to recruit socially, thereby finding more qualified candidates faster.

The platform, called TweetMyJobs, will also deliver analytics to city officials. The data will provide them with hyper-local insights that can help steer key strategic decisions to foster future job growth and enhance relations among government, employers and citizens.

The analytics platform will track the number of citizens pursuing job opportunities, the type of positions being sought and the industries in which job seekers want to work. The reports will show the number of jobs posted over time, as well as the type, industry and location of available opportunities.

Details: Reese McCranie, deputy director of communications, at (404) 330-6558 or

Farragut, Tenn., Named Business-Friendly City

Image removed.Farragut has been named the 2011 Most Business-Friendly City in Tennessee by the non-profit, free-market think tank Beacon Center of Tennessee. Farragut is the first city to receive this distinction twice, having received the inaugural title in 2006.

Each year the Beacon Center analyzes the state's 50 most populous cities' friendliness to business based on a number of factors. The study, How Business-Friendly are Tennessee's Cities?, scores each city in three categories: economic vitality, business tax burden and community allure.

Farragut has consistently ranked toward the top, finishing second in the 2010 rankings, due to its lack of property tax, low crime rate and strong job growth.

"The Board of Mayor and Aldermen has been committed to no property tax or business tax in the Town of Farragut, which offers a great environment for businesses to thrive and succeed," said Town Administrator David Smoak. "We look forward to the continued growth of our economy in the future."
The Beacon Center staff presented the award at a December 5 ceremony at the Farragut Town Hall.

Details: Public Relations Coordinator Chelsey Riemann at (865) 966-7057 or

Mesa, Ariz., Adds Plaques to Heritage Wall

As part of the celebration of the city's founding and Arizona's centennial, Mesa has unveiled four new plaques on the Mesa City Plaza Heritage Wall. The plaques commemorate transformative projects in the city.

The four plaques commemorate light rail arriving in 2008, which linked Mesa with Phoenix and Tempe; the opening of the state's largest performing and visual arts center in 2005, which provided an economic engine for downtown; receipt of a national award in 2008 for recruiting and retaining aerospace businesses; and adopting a preservation ordinance in 1993 that has led to the creation of historic districts and relocation of historic properties.

In 1999, a group of local citizens was formed to create a list of the most significant events to shape the city's development since its founding in 1878. After approval by the city council, 49 events were transferred to bronze plaques on the Heritage Wall. The last plaque, dated 1996, celebrates diversity in Mesa.

Last November, a new team of residents and city staff was formed to create a list of events that have occurred since that time to help celebrate Arizona's centennial. The team will reconvene in 2017 to determine if new plaques will be added.

Details: Public Information and Communications Specialist Kevin Christopher at (480) 644-4699 or

Southeast Florida Communities Beat the Heat

In an effort to help reduce the pet overpopulation problem in Southeast Florida, six animal shelters joined forces to provide spay and neuter surgeries for owned, feral and free-roaming cats.

Beat the Heat Spay/Neuter Week, held February 21 to 25, was the first project of the newly formed Southeast Florida Region Spay/Neuter Coalition.

The service was available to residents of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties and included vaccines and a microchip, as well as the sterilization surgery. The feral and free roaming cats were trapped by residents.

"This is a critical step to reducing the number of cats and kittens received in shelters throughout the spring," said Alex Munoz, director of Miami-Dade County Animal Services. "While kittens are cute, the sad truth is that there are often more kittens than there are homes for them."

Miami-Dade Animal Services also partnered with the non-profit Cat Network to offer free spay and neuter surgeries on February 19 in Wild Lime Park for dogs and cats owned or cared for by county residents. The event was part of Animal Services' continuing effort to bring such services closer to residents of South West Miami-Dade.

Details: Kathleen Labrada at (305) 418-7172 or