June 13, 2019

EPIC Community Meeting Minutes 06 -13


June 13th, 2019, 6:30 – 8:50
East Phillips Park Cultural & Community Center, 2307 17th Ave S.
EPIC web address: eastphillips-epic.com
Office: 2536 18th Avenue S., Minneapolis, MN 55404
Phone: (612) -280-8418

Board Roster: Rosie Cruz, Laura Dale, Mary Gonsior, Cassandra Holmes, Shontal Lajeunesse, Abah Mohamed, Carol Pass, Steve Sandberg, Sarah Santiago. 
Board Members Present: Cassandra Holmes, Shontal Lajeunesse, Steve Sandberg, Sarah Santiago, Mary Gonsior, Rosie Cruz
Board Members Not Present: Carol Pass (E), Laura Dale (E), Abah Mohamed (U)
Members: Schuyler Sellars, Lex Horan, Devika Ghai, George Kennedy, Carol Hill-Kennedy, Luce Guillen-Givins, Autumn Garrington, Michael Green, Linda Leonard
Guests: Shirley Heyer, Callie Pliego, Stephany Lopez, Dean Dovolis, Graham Faulkner, Jenny Dutra, Tony Brown, Clay Dutra, Enzo Rizzatti, Alex Downer

6:45     Greetings: Announcements
 
Q        QUORUM achieved at 6:45pm 
7:00     Agenda: Approved the agenda for tonight MG, SL, Approved
Minutes: Approved the minutes from May 9th MG, CH, Approved
           
7:15     Housing Development (at 1626 E Lake Street) Conversation with Owner and City
Developers present: Clay and Jenny Dutra; Graham Faulkner and Stephany Lopez from Alondra Cano’s office; CPED NOT present.
  At the May General membership meeting residents raised the following questions and concerns:
·               17th and Lake Street building
·               Can the city figure out a plan for parking around the building?
·               Can EPIC learn how to have a say in the process of issues of affordable housing with this building
·               Is the developer targeting particular commercial tenants? Who?
·               What kind of commercial tenants is he looking for?
·               What business hours will be allowed?
·               June 17th – going in front of the planning commission
·               Alondra’s office has said the developer is interested in learning more about seeking public funding – Devika will forward her correspondence from Alondra’s office to EPIC Board for further action
               One of the main purposes of this conversation is to discuss this further
               Since it is publicly funded, it must have 3-4 affordable units
§  There are two funding scenarios and this is one of them. Due to new inclusionary zoning ordinance language passed in December of 2018, all new developments above 10 units must fall into one of the two categories: 10% at 60% AMI or 20% at 50% AMI, the latter allowing the developer to access financing from the city. If they seek no funding, the former base requirement for all development is in effect.**
DISCUSSION
·      EPIC intro by Devika and Steve
o   Developers presented at previous community meeting
o   More questions: affordable housing options, parking options, what variances are being sought, sanitation hours
o   Devika appreciates developers answering questions
o   Most people that were heard from while door knocking had not heard of this proposed development
§  Most questions from door knocking surrounded affordability
§  Some written questions were submitted from door knocking
·      Presenters:
o   Proposed development takes two parcels – currently divided by alley
o   Proposing mixed use – 5 retail units and 39 apartments
o   Community room can be used by tenants and general community
o   Bike shop in the planned development
o   11 apartments per floor on 2nd, 3rd and 4th floors – each unit has own balcony
o   Penthouse on top of building
o   2 decks for tenants on top of building
·      Questions and answers:
o   Developer’s company is working to improve this community (Phillips and Powderhorn and entire South Minneapolis) as much as possible – starting with housing
o   Want diversity and local businesses
o   Not sure what the business hours will be yet
o   Changed mind about seeking public funding because of last community meeting
o   Not asking for money – wants to do what the community is asking – if it’s affordability, city offers money for offering affordable housing, but if city offers, developer will use this money
o   What changes from the earlier proposal is affordability – nothing else from earlier proposal
o   Concerns about 16th and 17th avenue narrowness and high levels of traffic flow
o   Developer proposes to limit retail space to office and other businesses that will not need loading and unloading
o   Community member appreciates thought that developer has put in about affordability since last presentation
o   Developer has contacts in building industry and investors over the years
o   Investors: developer himself and a group of other investors
o   Approximates $1,200 – $1,400 per unit – based on surrounding area rent
§  Affordable units will likely be 60% of above rent
o   Another comment about a concern of the alley being cutoff
o   Developer sees cutting off alley as a positive because neighbors who reside on the block will be the only ones using the alley
o   Concern about lighting in the alley
o   Lighting and cameras all around the building
§  Will help to clean up the area – cameras will not just serve the building
o   Question about underground parking
·      Very expensive to put in underground parking
o   $1 million for 10 parking spots
·      The lot is too narrow as well
o   Have not had analysis for the study of the finances
o   If developer uses city funding – likely 8 units need to be affordable and they will be 60% AMI (area median income)
o   City now requires new housing apartments to have 10% of their housing be affordable - in this case - 4 units have to be affordable
o   Concern that AMI is not relevant for East Phillips
o   How are people looking for affordable housing going to find this building?
§  City has interest in connecting people who are eligible – but the tenant application process is not managed by the city
§  Owner will need to advertise rates as well
o   Concern about gentrification of area
o   There are a lot of ways to ensure gentrification does not occur
o   Concern that plans occur in East Phillips without community input
·      Concern that developer is coming to the community late
·      Developer says he came to first community without architectural plans, just hand written plans
o   Developer says it is not too late to make changes to the plan
o   Community member says she has heard the developer listening and changing plans based on community input and developer wants to pay attention to us
o   Developer is concerned about affordability – there are a lot of questions and issues – he wants to hear solutions from the community – we need to discuss as a community – “help me put a building that everyone likes”
·      Concern that neighbors have not heard about proposal
o   Suggestion that the AMI for the whole greater metro is irrelevant and proposes that the developer uses East Phillips AMI
o   Feasibility study that the developer uses looks at neighborhood AMI
o   If everything goes well – planning to start building in 3 months
o   Area is overparked – developer says if you don’t want cars around don’t make space for them
o   Community member suggests that the developer flyers the direct area around the building to advertise for open units before advertising to the rest of the city
o   Developer responds that he plans to have a sign out front of building as it is under construction with a website on it for people to apply
§  Community member proposes that the immediate area around the development should be flyered first, with application and a phone number so it is more accessible to people without easy access to computers
·      Should be a bilingual flyer
o   Contact developer with more solutions at (612) 930-1616 and info@ingaugeusa.com
8:00     SCOUT team
o   EPIC has helped to fund a survey of Little Earth – survey had a response rate of 84% of households of Little Earth – 304 people
o   A large reason for high response rate was the incentives they offered = 3 $10 gift cards for each household that completed survey were provided and EPIC was mentioned as a funder of this incentive
o   Seeking money for another survey – exit type survey – implementation of grant – more community engagement - $2,000 for incentives for a survey
o   Board member suggests that if EPIC is able to find a contract with available funds EPIC ought to fund this survey
o   Going forward with items that EPIC funds, EPIC needs to have access to the data
·      Little Earth owns it and nobody can share without their permission
o   Put requests in writing to Little Earth
MOTION: EPIC will fund up to $2,000 toward SCOUT Little Earth Survey provided appropriate funding is available and EPIC will be listed as a funder of these surveys and will be provided a report summarizing the data and the research team will be invited to give a presentation to the EPIC community, SS, GK, 2 abstained because of conflict of interest, Approved
            Will need to repeat this vote next month 21-day review period

8:10     Report on Mother’s Day Pow Wow at Cedar Field Park from May 11th
o   Thank you note presented to EPIC from LERA for helping to fund the Pow Wow
o   Itemized budget, receipts and photos shared with the board
o   Great attendance
o   First time women empowerment march before Pow Wow and two spirits participated, as well as Aztec dancers

8:15     Update on funding from City of Minneapolis Office of Violence Prevention
o   Devika put together an incredible proposal
o   Grant was approved contingent on insurance documents from EPIC
o   A few edits were made and will be submitted to the city
o   Have 6-7 months to conduct survey of greater East Phillips community and employing youth and community members
o   This project encompasses a greater idea of safety and wellbeing as well as engaging the community in a deeper conversation
o   The community is needed to suggest youth and adults that will be involved in conducting the surveys – these will be paid positions
o   EPIC will further discuss supplemental funding particularly for incentives for those who complete the survey
o   SCOUT had similar survey – questions were written by us and for us

8:25     Brief update on Roof Depot Site/East Phillips Indoor Urban Farm/Hiawatha Advisory Committee
o   Hiawatha Advisory Committee Meeting scheduled for June 17th is cancelled!
o   HAC has been disassembled
o   City is tearing down building on the site – we are not sure when
o   East Phillips Neighborhood Institute (EPNI) is now asking community for help – need to use different tactics
o   Contacting the media and using civil disobedience is likely only way to implement green infrastructure and avoid more pollution in the neighborhood
o   We need to get aggressive with the city
o   Petition for environmental assessment worksheet was passed around the room
o   The petition may not change much but will slow down the city’s plan
o   Dean Dovolis from DJR Architecture says this has been one of the more covert tactics he has seen by the city to get what the city wants
o   EPNI is not asking for money from the city
o   Had $9 million pledged to project prior
o   There are investors interested and on standby if city allows our plan to go forward

8:30     Community Meeting about Roof Depot site is Monday, June 17th at 6:00pm at East Phillips Park
o   We’ll share some food, plan next steps in our fight to keep more pollution out of East Phillips and break into work groups
§  Write letters, make calls etc.
Join us in door knocking for the community meeting:
·      Friday June 14th at 5:30pm-Little Earth Youth Development Center (2495 18th Ave S)
·      Brief door knocking training and then set out with a partner to meet some neighbors and get them to come to the community meeting and sign our petition
8:50     Other Items
o   Summer Events:
·      Summerfest is June 23rd at East Phillips Park at 1:30pm
o   Come for the Talent Show, Music and Food!
If you would like to volunteer for the event or if you have questions contact Brad Pass at 1abjpass@gmail.com or Steve Sandburg at steve@stevesandberg.com
·      Community Garden – All summer
o   A few open spots left
o   $30 per year
·      National Night Out – Tuesday, August 6th
o   EPIC has funding for official National Night Out paper plates (no money for food or entertainment)
§  Contact EPIC if you are interested or would like to learn more
                     §  Ideas?
o   Fall Events:
§  Phillips Community Clean Sweep – October 12th
§  Garden Fall Harvest Party Saturday, October 19th
·      Expand our October Harvest party (block off the street)
§  Ideas?
9:00     Adjourn

FOR NEXT MONTH:
Will need to repeat SCOUT motion vote next month – 21 day review period