May 8, 2014

General Membership Meeting Minutes 05-08

May 8th, 2014, 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

“The world needs dreamers and the world needs doers,
but most of all the world needs dreamers who do.”

Board Members Present: Carol Pass, Jean Howard , Earl Simms, Mary Gonsior, Linda Leonard , Ali Micalin, Cesar Prado, Jennie Bjorgo, Rosie Cruz                               
EPIC Members: Laura Dale, Lee Samuels, Brad Pass, Andrew Fahlstrom, Alondra Cano                   
Guests:  Don Greeley, Sgt. Mike Fry, Carrie and Richard Aspinwall

6:35         Introductions:
·      Greetings and Introductions
·      Approval of Agenda without dissent at 6:40
·      Approval of April 10th, 2014 minutes  Brad and Laura Moved and seconded and passed 6:45
·      Carol distributed annual meeting minutes; Jean and Andrew moved to approve; motion passed.
·      Members moved to amend the agenda to give Councilmember Cano time to interact with the community.

The business on Lake Street: La Que Bueno; The city was facing an expensive and on-going legal battle to close the business; they are forced to have cameras; a security guard if more than 24 people are there; intoxicated individuals not allowed; parking lot must be closed by 10 pm; City hopes to restrict negative activity and set some bench marks; no more live entertainment; until Sept the food license is limited for serving times;
Inspectors will visit regularly and fees assessed for violations.
One year to reapply for live entertainment.
They close at 2 am.
In September they may be allowed to serve food late again.
Mary asked for Alondra to find out about locking the parking lot and why it can’t be done..

Council member Cano will keep us informed and the community and third precinct will reassess the situation together.

Don Greeley explained that the gate can’t be locked because of apartments and truck access.
Brad asked if the requirements are set in stone because of the camera discussion to follow in our agenda. The agreement is already signed and the business will have a camera only in the back.

Councilmember Cano asked if we want to try to amend so the front is covered as well because there are other problems on the block. Perhaps they would be willing to host the camera. Lee asked where it might be mounted. Shirley mentioned that if people don’t park in the back, where will they park after ten pm? Perhaps they will be towed if they park at Salvation Army.

CPS Karen Knox who works with Don will be able to answer some of our questions.
Mary asked about towing. Srgt Mike explained that it requires property owners to post and enforce towing. He explained that some street parking might be limited if the neighborhood makes a plan.

Don explained that the agreement means that employees can park in the lot even after ten pm.
The Councilmember said that she scheduled a meeting with the owners and they didn’t come.
Carol expressed an interest in having the business come to our member meeting.

Sherman and Associates
EPIC’s project on Bloomington Avenue that started as live/work units with three stories. We tried to sell them just as we entered the housing collapse. The first buyers were convicted of crime and lost the contracts. Basements have been in for about 5 years.

There is a lot of Latino discussion about PPL and another agency and the Mercado. There isn’t a market analysis; the economic development there is not carefully planned rather than a project that is built and not cohesively integrated into the corridor.  There are empty buildings on Lake Street. The question is how to work with Sherman and Associates to engage the Latino Cultural corridor  concept.  One model is the Cultural Corridor economic development on Native Americans and similarly the Somali community on Franklin.  How to include Fairview University that owns a lot of land is involved. There are Plaza Verde and Heart of the Beast  and many others as strategic players and partners.  Bringing deep sustainability and a healthy culture with a bike culture and less traffic smog, etc……

An interim plan that might be a plaza and something functional but not long term would perhaps get rid of the eyesore.

Carol pointed out that ultimately we need a developer that will be inventive. Can Sherman let the property go? Find a different developer? Buy them out?
Answer: There may be interested buyers and the Red Lake group might want to move to the Native Indian Corridor.

Council Member thinks the Latino community has considerable energy and interest and connections but no plan yet. Our community needs .  Alondra is looking for a staff  person to anchor the discussions and planning process. We will be notified about that. East Phillips will be invited to take part in the discussions.

Neighborhoods can take initiative in the interim plan.

Shirley noted that there was a plan that this corridor was part of in the past. She thinks those people should be stakeholders: PRG; Powderhorn Park; East and Midtown Phillips.

There is a plan for 11th to 15th by Midtown and Powderhorn Park which includes Spirit of Lakes which is adjacent to this four corners.
Saturday the 2700 block of 17th has a party we can come to]

Great Street Scape grant. It might work with the Bloomington Avenue development plan.

7:25:            Announcements:
·      Gardening Matters Plant Distribution: May 17th, Amer. Indian Center 9 am-noon
·      EPIC SummerFest – June 22nd, in East Phillips Park, 1:00 to 8:00 pm
·      EPIC General Membership Meeting – June 12th, 6:30 - 8:45 pm
·      Midtown neighborhood July 26 at Stewart park party as part of aquatennial
·      Global Market July 19th  as part of aquatennial
·      PowWow Mother’s Day all weekend $5 but free under 14 and over 50

7:15     Crime & Safety: Don Greeley. Updates on the crime Situation.
            17 robberies last week; many concentrated on Lake; Many victims are Latino. There are robbery prevention materials Don gave out to Latino business owners and asked some businesses and CUHC clinic
to distribute flyers.  One victim was a woman carrying $1,400 in cash.  This week there were fewer robberies and 4 arrests.

Carol asked about timing: 1-3 am people coming home alone from work late at night; or late night

Don said an email went out to 50 plus Latino organizations including churches across the city to educate and help the Latino community.

There were 8-10 prostitution arrests in a Lake street sting.

Register your bike through 311!!!!  There are lots of stolen bikes. Thousands are auctioned every year because they are not registered.  6,000 announcements went out today to the email list he has. There is no licensing any more. Get good locks. Lock the bike correctly.

Don had meetings at Global Market about security. They need trespassing control over restrooms and misc. folks. They may hire a security company. There is concern about panhandling; people sleeping in bathrooms;

Mike Fry would like to have two bikes purchased. Sargent Dave ?? would send us information. It is $1,800 for an equipped bike.  He indicated that the Greater Phillips area would have primary access to these patrols but that the bikes would also need to go where needed. There are many certified bike officers. Two more are needed now. An officer is assigned to a particular bike. These will be for the response team.

MOTION: Moved by Linda and seconded by Mary: EPIC spend $1,800 for a police bike and challenge Midtown to do the same. Motion Passed

Jean commented that Little Earth thinks police visibility is a big deterrent. Mike agreed that walking patrols do help. She asked about horses and he explained more are needed downtown for crowd control.

Mike suggested we make a list of community home cameras and video recordings so we can coordinate data in the event of a particular crime.

Brad asked about source of funding. Carol  pointed out a budget that still has three thousand dollars appropriated and funds are available.

Andrew thinks we have to have more discussion about priority plans and these funds.
Carrie said we have 70,000 in program money that can be moved around with plan modifications. We have over $300,000 available too.
Andrew wanted to see the document that verifies the data from recent priority plan input from the last member meeting and the annual meeting. Carol says she has compiled the data but not published it.

8:03            Elements of a Public Safety/Crime focused Priority Plan –

The discussion began in an ambiguous manner and progressed as we tried to figure out how to manage all of these topics .

Mary asked for patience with the Board because of its recent formation.

 Margaret mentioned all the block clubs and ways to network with them about collecting information that would be relevant to many of these challenges.

Andrew suggested forming a committee to help work with each of these topics as a way to manage division of labor.

Carol suggested a crime task force.

Shirley spoke about a task force being important to attack problems right away.

Carrie has a list of financials to the treasurer.  She reinforced the idea of a facilitated discussion about the whole set of strategies for crime control. She is willing to help with those discussions because of her coordination of the Weed and Seed program.

***  Carrie submitted the financials to the treasurer.
+++  Don Greeley offered to assist with a number of the topics and facilitating a task force.

 Linda suggested that the Board is responsible for the assignment of a task force and that the board should follow a template to issue to the people who want to work on the task force.

Brad suggested we send around the sign up sheet to see who wants to work on the task force.

Comments were made about members of the community and residents being recruited to      work  on various projects.

Walking and Driving Patrols.
       List Problem Properties (vacant and used for negative purposes).
       Buying Bikes for 3rd Precinct Police.
       Burned-out Street light reporting, new street lights in places.
       Cameras: Placement, Type and Cost.
       Research discounted cameral for home-owner installation(Funds?)
       Collecting ‘Hot Spot’ locations for Police and our surveillance.
       Creating Telephone Trees for 911 collaborations.
       Lobbying City Hall Somali, Hmong, Spanish-speaking Dispatchers.
       Have police train us for how to make effective 911 Calls.
       The EPIC Board meet with Powderhorn Leadership re Lake Street issues.

Linda suggested that the Board create a template for the task force on crime. By consensus we agreed that the board should create this document and then call upon the people who volunteer tonight to serve.
Brad asked if we could have a block club list and Don explained that it is illegal to distribute

8:25             Review funding, NRP and CPP, for this project. This was incorporated into the previous discussion and the submission of the documents to the treasurer

8:27    Update on EPIC and other ongoing projects:
 Greenway Heights Apartments, Bloomington Ave building,
2830 Cedar, The day care center just got their loan Alondra said, but we’ve heard that before. EPIC needs tangible information that this is going to happen. In four years we have seen no progress on this project.

Linda asked if the membership wanted us to send a letter to the owner. The consensus was “yes” with a request to board it; for a timeline; for a report about progress in the last year.

Triangle Building by Lake Street Station, Mary asked about the walking tour of the intersection by Lake Street and Linda was asked as secretary to see if we could get a report about the outcome of the walk.
the swimming pool: Carrie hasn’t heard anything about Native American Tribal funding for the pool project; Alondra talked about hearing that there would be a million dollar gift.

Carrie wants her tribe to consider purchasing property on Bloomington and in investing in the pool. Carrie is with Leech Lake.

Carol expressed concern that local kids won’t get to learn to swim or use the pool because the large paying constituents may take up the time.

Ryan Companies is building a lot of development in East Minneapolis. Kraus Anderson is going to build the parking lot and new amenities. Carol is thinking the pool could be an amenity to that location and that the contractors  could make philanthropic donations to the project.

Shirley said she’s approached Ryan several times in the past 4 years and they won’t ,so it would take a multi-collaborative approach to the “ask”.

8:40             Adjourned