August 11, 2011

General Membership Meeting Minutes 08-11

August 11th, 2011, 6:30 p.m. – 8:45 p.m.
East Phillips Park Cultural & Community Center 
2307 17th Ave S.
EPIC web address:
Office: 2536 18th Avenue S., Minneapolis, MN 55404
Attendees: Board Members: Mary Gonsior, Linda Leonard, Carol Pass; Chiffon Willams; Earl Sims; Rosie Cruz
·        Members: Hanna Lieder; Mohammed Cali, Brad Pass, Troy Menenger, Kim Hayden, Miko Johnson,  Margaret Kirkpatrick Guest: Shirley Heyer

6:45   Introduction:
·        Greetings and Introductions: Hanna Lieder; Mohammed Cali, Brad Pass, Shirley Heyer; Troy Menenger, Kim Hayden, Miko Johnson, Brad Pass, Margaret Kirkpatrick
·         Approval of Agenda - LL,CW
·        Minutes from EPIC 7/14 /2011 General Membership Meeting     
               Brad and Chiffon moved to accept the minutes with the addition of spelling out AT as artificial turf            in the motion made at the meeting. Passed

6:40    Announcements:
·         “Bridging Phillips” August 13th, Saturday, A Celebration of our Connections on our one Connecting Street, 24th St.  There is an effort to save the pedestrian bridge.
·         I 35 improvements with I 94 hearing about 28th and 29th street and that impacts the fact that the pedestrian bridge has to go…August.17th 5-7 pm at the Shrine building on  26th Street
·         Soccer Sign Up for Fall Park League.
·         Final Review of NRP Phase II Plan at Next Monthly EPIC Meeting to be voted on in October EPIC Meeting
·         Please ask people to email the city council about more family housing units in any developments. Families are having to leave Minneapolis to find housing because of foreclosures
7:00      Second Review & comment on NRP Phase II Plan in preparation for a final review vote at next          month’s meeting.  
·         Explanation of Funding
o   After the Mayor’s action on Dec. 13, 2010, we have $223,827, for housing and $96,783 for Community Enhancement remaining, see handout for details.
·         Explanation of the Plan
o   There has been a multilingual door-to-door survey. This is still going on with some focus groups in Somali. We have collected over 200 residents’ surveys and 22 businesses in East Phillips. We have spent several days in Cedar Field speaking with Little Earth Residents and collecting surveys from them. More focus groups are planned.
o   The survey results identified the opinions and questions about how funds would be spent in the neighborhood.
o   Those survey results so far are guiding the proportion of funds targeted for various portions of the NRP Phase II Action Plan.
o   None of the options the Steering Committee put forward were just dropped. It appears that the inclusion of things people wanted on the Plan were accurate. These came from last years Annual meeting and other discussions last year. They wanted them in somewhat different degrees, but none fully disappeared, except the EPIC Office idea, which came up when we had more money. That has turned into admin. Also providing gap financing for single family homes looks like too much of a reach.
o   The housing plan focused on using due-on-sale deferred loans and the lottery for major repairs and an appeal process for the lottery process for an emergency loan was discussed. It was concluded that the best deal for EPIC is housing deferred loans.
o   EPIC probably will contract with CEE; Center for Energy and the Environment. The BEPIC Board  also asked Doug Wise who worked with us before to offer us a proposal to
o   help us with this.
o   The other major expenditure is for development along the Greenway. This is an ongoing project, started in NRP Phase I to provide affordable family housing on the Greenway….of which there is almost none to date.
 We went through the proposal page by page with explanations and commentaries. We made jokes about wanting a gated community.
o   We concurred that we need more money for a website and we need multiple languages. We could use a volunteer to keep our website up to date. Or finding a strong volunteer.
·         Q & A on Changes
o   There was a question about prepaying part of a housing loan. The usual is to pay some to start and then segments as the work gets done.
o   Carol explained how you can build a pool of money by recovering the “due on sale” loans and seeking a  match.
MOTION: To post the Phase II Draft Plan on the website; distribute it; and start the 30 (21) day review for final approval after the next meeting.   Passed Troy and Chiffon made motion.

7:37        Preparation for Phase II Housing Rehab Support Deferred Loans for East Phillips Residents,
·         Explanation of the Plan
o   We went page by page to understand the implications and process for each category.
o   We think CEE might be able to take this on.
o   We noted that there can’t be code violations on the house.
o   We have to market this program and run the lottery, but CEE in the past was very, very helpful and they bring their own grants to the process.
·         Preliminary ratification for Review for Next Month’s  EPIC meeting
            Motion:  Approve the Draft Housing Rehab Plan for finalization at the next monthly meeting.
                        Troy, Mary        seconded. Passed
            Motion: Approves Doug Wise proposal for $4,200 using of returned Phase One contract funds.
                        Troy and Mary seconded. Passed
Earl left, but Mary arrived at 7:45 pm.
Committee of the Whole and then returned back.

7:47      Distribution of the Phase II survey: Still being collected and focus groups have happened. Very labor intensive, but we are glad we did this. People know about EPIC as never before. Online survey will go on our website in a few days.
7:50      Next Steps for Hi-Lake Apartments
            They are not ready to build this fall.
            Residents are urged to call the city council about our need for family housing because so much rental is foreclosed and people can’t find housing to stay in the community with their school and other social    relationships and networks.

            We have some information from city officials that no more funds are available for the project but we’re         going to press for two bedrooms and balconies. One resident offered to meet mornings with the developer and Carol.

7:55        “Bridging Phillips” Progressive Festival – A Special Festival connecting & celebrating the Four             Quadrants and the Multi-Ethnicities of Phillips: Our Diversity, Our Unity, Our Community, All Down Our          One Linking Street, 24th St.   Music, Food, Enchantment! Aug. 13th. EPIC Participation at E. Phillips Park
            --Dallas Johnson, presenter
8:00        Organizing for youth issues – Ideas?  Actions?? Tae Kwan Do?? Youth Soccer?? Big Brothers/Big             Sisters? Update on Somali Community Focus NPI Project. Mohamed Cali, --Carol Pass
We need coaches for a lot of sports, especially soccer. One resident knows someone who might be willing to coach.

8:07      Rosie Cruz arrived so we re-established a quorum.

8:08     Crime Concerns and Other Livability Issues:  Help Create List of Problem Properties.  Discuss           current difficulties on your block. Tracking hot spots, problems and police assistance.
            Q:   Does the owner of the property know about the problem property? No, because she lives in Seattle and a management company runs it. 2520 17th
            From Rosie  Cruz: 2931 16th Ave?
            And the house next to it…….maybe 2927…..selling drugs. There are neighborhood break-ins of cars.
            There is a prostitute that’s back now. Chiffon knows her and so does Jenny. A drug dealer is back on the 2900 block of 16th Ave.  too and we might have to use court watch and impact statements and citizen’s patrol to assist in following up on the drug and john traffic.
            Chiffon talked about a multi-million grant in Chicago to hire felons to teach skills to senior citizens and other employment options. Chiffon talked about offering options to people so they don’t turn to criminal    options.

            22nd and Bloomington has a Court Watch tomorrow 10:30 am. Pictures of chronic criminals. Options for impact statements;

            Troy on Greenway at 2 am and assaulted on his bike. The follow up is nothing….no leads….in spite of the fact that cameras are there. We talked about cameras and where they are. The one on 16th is supposed to be portable but costs money to move.

            Shooting at 2501 on 17th last night; another shooting at Little Earth this week too.

            Motion: Request 3rd precinct to provide access to all public surveillance real time video so the public can access it and rebroadcast it.

            Shirley talked about how Carla at the third precinct has helped with SA tapes in the past. There are data privacy issues for storage time. If you know the date/time/place you can ask for the tape.
            Troy and Mary seconded it

8:35       Adjournment: