Why Do WHNA?

WHNA is short for Watrous Heights Neighborhood Association.

If you live in the proposed area, you will be receiving an invitation to attend a meeting Monday, March 7th 2022 at 6:00 pm in the South Union Elementary School Library. 

This meeting will give you an opportunity to ask questions about the effects of voting to become part of WHNA.

All residents in the proposed area are invited to attend this meeting. All in attendance will have an opportunity to vote for or against becoming part of the Watrous Heights Neighborhood Association.

 

What is a Recognized Neighborhood Association?

 

A recognized neighborhood association is a group of people who identify with a common area, who share common goals and concerns, and who meet the standards of neighborhood recognition. Recognized associations represent the position of the collective neighborhood and provide input to City Council, Boards and Commissions and City Staff on issues affecting neighborhoods.

 

What is the role of a Recognized Neighborhood Association?

 

Neighborhood associations play a key role in building community, sharing ideas, and working cooperatively to make their neighborhood a better place to live. To do this, recognized neighborhoods:

     * Conduct regular meetings to share information or discuss topics of neighborhood interest.

     * Organize events or activities that engage neighbors socially.

     * Promote leadership and volunteerism within the organization.

     * Receive official communications and notifications from City departments on a variety of programs, services, and development activities that directly impact the neighborhood, and share information with neighborhood residents.

     * Provide input to the City Council, Boards and Commissions, and City Staff on issues affecting the neighborhood.

     * Provide input on new and existing City programs and services on behalf of the collective neighborhood.

What are the benefits of a Recognized Neighborhood Association?

Recognized Neighborhood Associations receive the following benefits, but not limit to:

     * Receives an official certificate of recognition from the Mayor and City Council, as well as annual recertification to maintain recognition status.

     * Priority by City Leaders and Staff for attending regularly scheduled neighborhood meetings. For ad hoc meetings or special events, recognized neighborhood associations will also receive priority by City Leaders and Staff over non-recognized neighborhoods or groups.

     * Priority given for use of City Facilities according to department policies and City Code.

     * Opportunity to participate in the Neighborhood Revitalization Program, such as but not limited to Spring Cleaning to Reduce Urban Blight (SCRUB), Neighborhood Based Service Delivery, Neighborhood Infrastructure Rehabilitation Program (NIRP), Neighborhood Finance Corporation (NFC) lending, and other planning services.

What has WHNA done to benefit the neighborhood in the past?

Our four founding members formed the WHNA and obtained recognition because we had an illegal drug house in our immediate area and drive-by shootings. We felt the need to have the status to rid our neighborhood of this problem. IT WORKED. The shootings have stopped, and the illegal drug house is no longer active.

We have worked with the City to remove some Blight Homes and will have a couple more removed this year. Our WHNA Board has grown and become more active. We now consider many of the City Personnel as active team members working with us on a regular basis to benefit the neighborhood. 

We have incorporated as a Non-Profit under Iowa Law. We have obtained 501(c)3 designation from the I.R.S. as Tax Exempt. We have developed a website that many of our neighbors now use as a dependable source of information for our area. We have been able to bring in many informative speakers of interest to our neighbors.

We hosted the National Night Out Event last August to honor our Police and Fire Department at Park Avenue School Grounds. It was informative and FUN for the kids. Food and lots to do. We are already scheduled to host that again Tuesday August 2nd 2022. It will be bigger and better this year. Mark it down on your Calendar.

We also have had a Cul-De-Sac Event for fun and Halloween spots to give out candy to the kids. We plan to do more this year.

One of our biggest Events this past year was the WHNA Fourth Annual Holiday Lighting Contest. There was $500 in Gift Cards awarded to the winners. We are already planning for the WHNA Fifth Annual Holiday Lighting Contest to be bigger and better for the neighborhood this year.

What are the Goals of Watrous Heights Neighborhood Association?

We wanted to have a park or small green space in our area. A couple of years ago we had a commitment from a serious supporter to provide 50% of the funding to acquire and develop a small neighborhood park. That fell through but is still a serious goal.

We have several projects that we would like to implement to make our WHNA area better. You as neighbors in the proposed area can help make that happen. We need your ideas. We need your efforts to work with us to make that happen.

WELCOME ABOARD!!!