November 8, 2010

General Membership Meeting Minutes 11-8

November 8, 2010, 6:30 p.m. – 8:45 p.m.,
Holy Rosary Church Board Room, 24th and 17th Ave

Board Members: Mary Gonsior, Jenny Bjorgo, Chiffon Williams, Carol Pass, Earl Simms, Rosie Cruz, Mahamed Cali, Linda Leonard
Members Absent: Tim Chancy
Members: Alfred Johnson, Carrie Anne Johnson, Brad Pass, Hannah Lieder, Kevin Lieder, Janessa Bjorgo,
Guests: Shirley Heyer

6:30    Introduction:
·       Greetings and Introductions
·          Approval of Agenda (JB, BP)
·       Minutes from EPIC General Membership Meeting 10/11/2010 (BP, JB)

6:40    Announcements  &  Reports:
·       Tentative Grand Opening of the East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center –
·        January 22nd
·       Waiting to hear from Ms.Warmka about next meetings for 22th St. & Franklin Ave  Street Design. Residents interested in attending should indicate interest on the sign-in sheet (code 22F)
·       Report on the EPIC Harvest Garden Party
·       South HS is hosting an event to discuss environmental issues, with speakers and local resources. Pre-registration is encouraged.
·       Chiffon conducted a survey asking parents what kind of programs they would like available in neighborhoods for individuals aged 8-25. Will be conducting additional surveys among local churches, and schools.
·       Chiffon is also trying to start a program for cleaning up litter.

7:00    East Phillips Park Center: Update, Floor Colors, Kitchen Money, Rain Gardens, final excavation. We  need to all check for vandalism Update, Floor Colors, Kitchen Money, Rain Gardens, final parking lotexcavation. We need to be alert for vandalism in progress
            Tentative GRAND OPENING - Saturday, Jan. 22, 2011 from Noon to 6:00 PM.

Disaster was averted by the Park Board when they realized that everything would be postponed until Spring, unless the parking lot was addressed immediately. Announcements for the grand opening will not be advertised until successful completion is assured. Plans for the grand opening are underway, however. Seeking diversity of local talent to participate in the celebration. Contact Brad to submit suggestions for the program. Still need $30,000 for commercial kitchen range, vent hood, fire suppression and makeup air systems. Final excavation for parking lot and rain garden are going on right now. Plantings will be completed in the Spring. A slightly smaller than "professional" sized soccer field and baseball field are planned, with community supporting this plan. It will take one year to establish the sod for these fields. A tennis court and outdoor half-court basketball will also be retained.

Funds for the kitchen would be available from EPIC's NRP Phase II, however, progress on the process has been stalled due to Xcel power lines and other neighborhood concerns.
Shirley reported that local hiring for all construction projects will be done through certified, union companies. Brad reported that many partnerships are participating in planning for programming. The Park Board will contract for background checks on volunteer applications.

7:20     Phillips Community Center (PCC): New Floor Plan, Amazing Pool Proposal, Hannah Lieder

Carol presented a short history of the work done over the past three years to pull together the four neighborhoods along with other partners to give the Park Board the revenue they needed to save the Phillips Pool and Gym, and leave space in the building for community use. A CURA grant was used to obtain a consultants to review the current Park Board services available to the neighborhoods, and found that the community of Phillips was drastically underserved, and that services to the community were greatly exaggerated.

The four neighborhoods have been collaborating to save the Phillips Pool & Gym and ensure that the building remains accessible to the neighborhood for local programming. Over the past year or more, a larger group developed to figure out how to pay for the operations of the facility and programs. This eventually resulted in a partnership, with a Memorandum of Understanding representing the potential tenants, stakeholders and resident organizations that are working together as a group to restore community use of the PCC.

The process over the past year produced a series of floor plans, and multiple groups submitted proposals to the Park Board. The Memorandum and current floor plan was presented to the Park Board on Thurs. Nov. 4, 2010 including (Francisco for PWH, Bob Albee for Wellness Consortium, Running Wolf for Native American Community Clinic; Hannah Lieder for Mpls. Swims, Carol for 4 Neighborhoods, Mahomed Cali for Somali American Community.)

Hannah reported on the presentation given to the Park Board regarding the swimming pool and why it is important to save the pool for use by the community. Mpls. Swims (Hannah Leider) contracted the money put together by the neighborhoods and Mpls. Swims for a feasibility study and the resulting report concluded that it would take $276,342 to get to pool in shape to fill it with water and use the pool. Additional improvements (windows, individual showers, etc.) would add renovation costs of an additional $240,514. The total cost projected for all renovations to the poolroom interiors and locker rooms is at least $624,000. Concept drawings were provided by DJR Architecture, Inc.

7:40     Xcel Energy HIGH VOLTAGE TRANSMISSION LINES: Xcel rejects the some of the             Recommendations of the Administrative Law Judge!

Xcel rejected all recommendations from the Law Judge. They asked for exceptions on everything and asked the PUC to not require them to do any of this. The comment period was NOT extended. EPIC, Karen Clark and many community residents wrote to the PUC with comments on the recommendations, and Xcel's request. According to Tim Springer, we have to wait now, and see what the PUC is going to do. Xcel needs to give its "certificate of need." Also, anyone can testify again this spring. Watch for public meetings on this.

8:00   2600-2606 17th Ave. PROPOSAL FOR APARTMENT of 20 UNITS of  HOMELESS HOUSING by Alliance of the Streets. Issues with Alliance, EPIC’s Response Kris Brogan’s Letter
*EPIC received an email from Met Council staff stating that the Alliance Housing proposal as not recommended for funding by either the MN Housing or LHIA.

8:15   NRP & NCEC Guidelines & NRP Electors: East Phillips Allocation

The new NCEC will apparently be giving us $50,000 per year (based on a formula.) We don't know when this will begin. We do know that the CDGB money we've been using will end at the end of this year. EPIC needs an elector to vote Carol onto the final NRP board that will be phased out. Two individuals MUST attend. The meeting is in two weeks. November 18?
Chiffon Williams is committed.

8:20             Reconfiguring 22nd Street: See diagram. Opinions??  Motion?
General comments at membership meeting were opposing to the proposal. The plan doesn't take into account the impact on East Phillips and other Phillips neighborhoods. One more public meeting is planned before a decision is likely to be made. What does our opinion matter - do we have any power to affect this decision?

8:30    Adjournment