December 8, 2011

General Membership Meeting Minutes 12-08

December 8th, 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

Board Members Present: Steve Struthers, Mary Gonsior, Linda Leonard, Carol Pass
Members Present: Pat Fleetham, Brad Pass, Nimco Mohamed
Guest:   Jana Metge,
Agreed to meet as Committee of the Whole

6:45   Introductions:
·        Greetings and Introduction.
·        Approval of Agenda  (approved)
·        Approval of Minutes from EPIC 11/10/2011 General Membership Meeting (approved)
·        Requested that attendance be reported monthly       
6:40    Announcements:
·         La Posada, December 17th, St.Paul’s Lutheran Church, 4:00 pm, 2742 15th Ave. S.

7:35   Running Wolf Fitness Center in Phillips Community Center, New Affordable Programs to stay healthy,  Calendar of Classes – Connie Norman, Exec. Director

Opened in October 2011, they have registered 170 people in their programs, including 54 from East Phillips. The program originally was located on Lake St, and it didn’t work for people in Phillips. Native American Clinic and American Indian Health Board assisted with getting the program moved into the Phillips.

Membership is free for the first six months (through the end of March). After that the fee will be $10 per month. You must get a medical clearance before joining (not a physical.) There is not day care available at this time.  The organization is looking for a defibrillator; they are using a “loaner” right now. Financial support was brought up, to be discussed at the next board meeting.

7:15      Presentation of the PLAN for the new EAST PHILLIPS PARK SOCCER and BASEBALL FIELDS. Cliff Swenson, Park Board Planning Dept.

Cliff has been working for the park board since July and is trying to clean up a few projects. Cliff reminded us that there is a gas line running under the soccer and baseball fields. The park board is working to put together the funding to create a full size soccer field with artificial turf, (which can also be used as two “Soccer 6” fields for younger players.) With artificial turn installed, the field can be “overscheduled” during daylight hours without being concerned about erosion of the field/turf.

Cliff distributed a preliminary draft of the plan that the park board is submitting to vendors for bids. There is no field lighting provided in this plan (no funds for this right now.) Cost would be about $300,000 to install.

Starting next week, Hennepin County provided funds for the park board to begin testing samples from a few areas to gauge the level of contamination of soil at the tie-in locations for storm sewer utilities.

The Gym has been completed, the extra hoops are installed.

The kitchen was bid out twice, and a contractor has been selected. The fittings should be delivered about Christmas and the kitchen will be completed very soon thereafter

The park board will tackle pedestrian lighting in the spring. 

LL: Soccer Report       

Community based soccer is nearly ready to go. The park will provide supervised playing times, and coaching children ages 5-15. They will focus on fundamentals, ensuring that it is safe and fun. The park is looking for coaches, and is beginning to screen candidates. They are looking particularly for women who can coach. Volunteers should stop in at the park, pick up a volunteering form (including a background check), and return the completed form to Travis at the front desk.

LL: Design Project

Last month, EPIC voted to provide funding for a digital design workshop class for teens at the Waite House. They will be using the $750 provided by EPIC to purchase design software. All youth programming at the Waite House requires family participation.

7:50    Greenway Heights Project- It is going to go ahead.

Carol reported that now that EPIC’s Phase II plan has been passed – we can begin working on the contract for Loren Brueggeman (Phoenix), and PRG to get the project moving forward.

8:00      Status of the Phase II Plan (IT PASSED) and the Policy Board
            Motions from last month:
  • Support the Exec. Director letter from Waite House and the concerns of the ethnically diverse families of Midtown Phillips.
·        Call upon NRP and the new NCR to take the grass roots effort to be responsive to the ethnically diverse people more seriously on a neighborhood level. Support our NRP and NCEC rep in pressing this as a grass roots ethical issue.

Neighborhood and Community Relations Dept
Neighborhood and Community Engagement Commission
            The issue of Neighborhood Empowerment: Will there be neighborhood people on these boards
            Will there be funding for Neighborhoods

8:15    Neighborhood Crime Control: A Plan- Phillips Community Crime Coalition
 - A Central Repository for Crime    -Block Clubs

Motion from last meeting: Create Block Clubs and request crime reports from the police. Make a Plan to consolidate and coordinate crime reports and problem properties. Centrally locate this information and circulate it to residents. Work with Block clubs on the other side of Bloomington Ave. Arrange Network Meetings.
Who will help do this??

Steve S receives a weekly “digest” for several neighborhoods – he will provide sign up information for weekly reports on crime in neighborhoods.

Midtown and East Philips are considering joining together, meeting as a group, start parceling out information, get the police involved again, pick out problem houses and try to intervene in some of this crime. We need people to take responsibility for their blocks, and monitor and identify hot spots. We will start by contacting people who have been block club leaders in the past.

Pat will ask someone in his building to take on block club leadership. Chiffon suggested getting a list of owners of problem properties and is willing to talk with owners. Nimco is willing to become a block club leader. Mary will reinstate herself as a block club leader. Steve will find someone on their block willing to become a block club leader. Hannah thinks that Rose is the block club leader on her block. Contact Don Greeley for more information and to sign up for training, etc.

Jana and Carol will plan a meeting in early 2012 to start a process of communication.

Update on Safety Center and Public Safety Officers

The mayor is cutting a number of community safety positions out of the budget. Carla is leaving for the 2nd Precinct. We are keeping John and the Midtown safety center. Jana suggested that instead of Carla leaving, she be given a new job, such as “city coordinator for court watch” and that she be HQ’d at the Midtown safety center.

Nimco pointed out that funding the neighborhood crime specialists are going away.

MOTION: We endorse the concept of working to form a coalition that would be conducive to obtaining status as a weed and seed graduated site for the purpose of crime control and seek funding through that means, for crime control. (PF, CP approved as committee of the whole)

AGENDA NEXT MONTH: Nimco requested that we look into how EPIC should respond to planned cuts to funding for neighborhood crime specialists.

8:35     Adjournment