August 13, 2015

General Membership Meeting Minutes 08 - 13

August 13th, 2015, 6:30 p.m. – 8:50 p.m.

East Phillips Park Cultural & Community Center, 2307 17th Ave S.
EPIC web address:
Office: 2536 18th Avenue S., Minneapolis, MN 55404

Board Roster: Jenny Bjorgo, Rosie Cruz, Mary Gonsior, Jean Howard, Linda Leonard, Margarita Ortega, Carol Pass,
Board Members Present: Carol Pass, Mary Gonsior, Margarita Ortega, Jean Howard, Linda Leonard, Rosie Cruz (T),
Board Members Not Present: Jenny Bjorgo
EPIC Members: Brad Pass,  Laura Dale, Clara Emma, Naomi Kordian, Kristin Dionne,  Sarah Goodspeed, Brian Heart, Brydine Falcon, Lance Lamm, Erica Schultz, Peter Vankoughnett, Carol Hil-Kennedy, Pat Fleetham, Shauna Dillon, Reta Bluetra, Lola Lablont, George Kennedy   
Guests: Aisha Gomez, Shirley Heyer, Michelle Chavez, Carrie Aspinwall, Heidi Hafermann, Joe Beaulieu, Christine MacDonald, 

6:35     Bike for Police:   Matthew Severance; newly promoted, assigned to our neighborhood, came to thank us for the bicycle. Question: Recent incidence – massive police response. Police believed someone in the garbage truck was armed. Did not believe it was stolen.

6:45     Greetings and Introductions; favorite meeting to go to. Theme: meeting guidelines.
o   Food, Learning (history, culture), Garden, school conference meetings, community building team meeting, birthday parties, diabetic breakfast (info), native American pow wows (dance), Living room, coworker meetings, underwater tea parties, Alzheimer’s support group, moving meetings, food and out of the office, productive and healthy, EPIC and family breakfast meetings, EPP programming and partnership meetings, GLBT/MN 2 Spirit Society/Little Earth/coworkers, Michegan Women’s Music Festival, Walking meeting.
o   Accommodators (10)
o   Peacemakers (2)
o   Distributed meeting guidelines
·       Approval of Agenda: Approved by consensus
·       Approval of Minutes: BP, Laura Approved

  6:55     Announcements:

  • EPIC Membership Meeting, Sept. 10th Wed. 6:30 pm, Board Meeting, East Phillips Park, Sat, 10:00 am, Sept 5th
  • First Planning Meeting for Clean Sweep, Next Wednesday, August 19th, 8:30 am
  • The POPULAR FINANCIAL LITERACY CLASS in SPANISH, Starts Next Tuesday, August 18th, 6:00 to 8:00 pm, East Phillips Park, Tuesdays and Thursdays for three weeks at East Phillips Park
  • Clean Sweep, Saturday, Oct. 10th, 9:00 am at the Welna Ace Hardware Parking Lot..Free Breakfast & T-shirts
  • EPIC Fall Harvest Party and Potluck at the Community Garden, Oct. 17th, Sat. 4:30 until the fire goes out.
  • Read the Alley Articles – EPIC posts in every issue.
  • Banyan announced they will have a ground-breaking on the 15th of September at 4 pm at 13th and 26th Street.
7:10     The Roof Depot site, the Water Yard and the Future:  Aisha Gomez, Q and A
What is happening now?
What should we be doing?
A Protest?

A lot of EPIC residents got involved to try to stop the city from purchasing the property, but the city voted to put in an offer, however, the owner rejected the offer and has said that the property is no longer for sale. We have heard that the owner was upset about all the publicity and so our efforts worked. We’re not done, we’re not exactly sure why he rejected the offer, but this gives us time to do some visioning for what could be there, how to raise funds to purchase, etc. Mayor Hodges announced her budget for next year and it includes a “green zone” project, which we hope might come to East Phillips/Hiawatha Ave. City is not looking for another site for the Water yard (City has been discussing this since 2001), and city will try again in a couple months.
EPIC passed a motion that seeks to get pollution out of this site, and turn it into something that provides local jobs and housing, and prevents new polluting industries from moving into the site. We would love to see sustainable agriculture in that area, with local jobs, with solar powered urban agriculture.

Three properties: Dalson Roofing, Bituminous Roadways, Smith Foundry, Roof Depot

MO: Since he isn’t selling to the city at this time should we be forming a relationship with the owner?
CP: We have started a protest to try to move the foundry and the roof depot out; continuing our effort to remove the polluting industries. Goal is send our message.
LL: Has anyone forwarded to the owner a vision that the Phillips community has formed.
AG: This might be appropriate for Rep. Karen Clark to present.

Other notes:
LML: The waste from Smith Foundry is being leaked out onto 28th Street.

JH: Send a separate letter with invitation to meet, and discuss future uses.
Pat: Ask Karen to present our thanks.
PV: We need to have outside support, so a personal relationship may be more important down the road.
CP: Karen feels so strongly about this site and the pollution issue and will probably do something anyway. I think we should be honest about our hopes for the properties.

MOTION: EPIC will send a thank you letter to the owner of Roof Depot for not selling his property to the City of Minneapolis (MO, MG, Limited debate; Approved.)

“rejected amendment” …and tell him that the neighborhood is exploring possibilities and would like to meet with him (Amendment, BP).
7:53     Introduction of our new Neighborhood Specialist
  • Michelle Chavez- Her vision for her Role as Neighborhood Support Specialist.
    • Will work with EPIC’s board
    • Will work with Carrie to understand history of EPIC
    • Will assist with various housing and safety projects that are currently in the pipeline; and will assist with obtaining funding for future projects also.
    • Has a number of neighborhoods
    • With the city for 17 years
      • Health dept., planning dept., public works,
  • Carrie’s position
    • Michelle and Carrie will be tag-teaming
    • Focus on needs related to leadership development
    • Will have input providing support and guidance
7:58     Discussion of the CIF Community Innovation Grant – Michelle Chavez

We are one of 11 groups who received a grant. EPIC has done projects with other groups, and this is a project working with Little Earth. The grant brings neighborhoods and one or more other nonprofits together. There are a number of Native American youth (ages 14-19) who will be working with a teaching artist, and will incorporate collaborate activities between Little Earth and the EPIC community.

Joe: Currently works with youth at Little Earth, and has worked with Heidi over the summer on this idea.

Heidi: Joe and Heidi worked together on this project for the last three years. Heidi loves working with these kids and came up with an idea to expand accessibility to business/programming/arts institutions that are traditionally less open to the Native American community.

This group of students will really “run” the program, there will be a cultural and community connection to Little Earth, and will engage multi-generational communication. The program will include an annual program at EPIC’s annual meeting, and an annual Community meeting. The activities will be heavily based in the summer, and will provide stipends for the students.

CDA: The collaboration is helping EPIC achieve some of our priority plan.

MO: Joe and Heidi are eager to get started, and so how can we get funds to them?

Michelle and Carrie: 25% is available as an advance. Michelle and Carrie are meeting tomorrow to ensure that they understand what needs to be included in the scope of services. The contract will actually be with EPIC, and so roles need to be very clear, and all these details need to be established in the agreement.

LL: Press release? Some kind of program?

8:14     EPIC needs Two New Board Members
·       Two positions are open
·       EPIC Process for filling vacancies; outlined in our bylaws (available online.)
o   Distributed and read aloud (Article VII, Section 10
o   Read aloud, (Membership Eligibility and Board of Directors )
o   Applications need to be filed with the Secretary by Saturday, August 29, 2015.
o   1404 East Franklin Ave. during business hours, or call Jean Howard at 612-499-1262[c1] 

MOTION: EPIC will move the board meeting to Sept. 12, and the GMM move to Sept. 17. (CP, JH) Approved.

8:40     Reports-

  • Finance report
  • National Night Out
  • Board Retreat
    • We did a lot of training with Ellen McVeigh (attorney)
    • What our rights are and how we can stand as a neighborhood organization even without the city, and how we “bite the hand that feeds us”.
    • Thanks to a grant from Little Earth, we enjoyed breakfast and lunch
    • We discussed historical trauma and why Little Earth residents shy away from EPIC and why it is hard for Native American board members to be here.
    • MO shared that she wants more board training
    • We started considering some bylaw changes; still needs further discussion
    • We are working on the City of Minneapolis’ responses to our bylaws
    • We learned a lot about each other
    • MO shared some information about her survey of the Little Earth community, discovering some information about generational challenges and hardships that still need to be addressed and how understanding of these issues can increase communication.
  • The Popular Financial Literacy Classes are Back IN SPANISH
    • Start on the 18th (Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6-8 pm.)
  • Home Rehab and Home Buyer Loans
    • New loans are available
MOTION: JH, MO Table the following items to the next meeting.
  • EPIC Home Construction Project
  • Report on Grievances
  • Ground Breaking for the Banyan, Sept. 15, 26th St. & 13th Ave. 4:00 pm

8:50     Adjournment (MG, JH) Adjourned

 [c1]These must be posted to the website and emailed out to the community. City will also post on their website.