Minutes - 1/2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009 2:25 PM

  

Board Meeting Minutes 

January 20, 2009 

Page 1 of 4 

 

 

DISTRICT 10 COMO COMMUNITY COUNCIL 

Board Meeting 

  January 20, 2009 -  7:00 p.m. 

Historic Streetcar Station 

1224 N. Lexington Parkway 

St. Paul, MN 

 

The agenda and supporting materials were mailed to directors prior to the meeting. 

Directors present: David Arbeit, John Bjork, Ted Sheu, Mike MacDonald, Marcy Micek, Scott 

Baker, Ken Kunkle, Chris Martineau, Barbara Frick, Marc Prokosch, Sehoya Cotner 

Directors absent: None 

Directors excused: Lori Klongtruatroke, Misty Havens, Matt Schmitt, Barbara Clark 

Staff present: Camille Schafer, Rhonda Debough 

I. Call to Order 

David Arbeit called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. 

II. Review, Amend, Approve Agenda 

Ken Kunkle moved to approve the minutes and Ted Sheu seconded. Unanimously approved. 

III. Community Section 

A. Como Pool Planning 

Don Ganje from the St Paul Park & Rec Department said that the goal for the planning 

process is to come up with a preliminary design for the new pool. This will be a $7 million 

project. One of first things Park & Rec will do is to look at the entire area surrounding the 

site (traffic planning, Jessamine intersection with Lexington, etc). The Como Woodland 

Project plan is also being used in the planning process. The Planning committee is open to 

the “natural” pool concept (described further below). 

David Arbeit reminded us that the Como Pool is broken, there’s no money to repair it, and it 

will not open until this renovation is done. The Planning Committee is composed of 

representatives from district councils, neighborhood, and other interested parties. The 

planning process will continue through March, at which time the design process will start. 

Marsha Milgrom, District 10 Pool Task Force representative, presented an update of the 

Como Pool planning process. A study of all aquatic facilities in St Paul has been done. The 

initial assumptions were that the water park concept was what was needed to replace Como 

Pool. Many decisions regarding the new pool have not yet been determined: size, location, 

cost, hours of operation, etc. On February 17-18 there will a public input meeting. Marsha 

 

Board Meeting Minutes 

January 20, 2009 

Page 2 of 4 

discussed some of the concerns she’s hearing from neighbors. Como Park Alliance has done 

a good job of organizing and getting the word out about the Como Pool project. 

David commented that the Land Use Committee’s work plan encompasses many of the same 

issues the Pool Task Force is discussing: parking, traffic control, etc. He emphasized that, 

though District 10 hosted a community meeting organized by Como Park Alliance on the 

Como Pool issue, District 10 is a separate entity from Como Park Alliance. 

Susan Janda described the natural swimming pool concept and distributed information about 

it. These pools use plants and other natural materials rather than manufactured or chemical 

ones. 

B. City Training for Council Boards 

Diane Wanner, District Council Coordinator, discussed training opportunities for District 

Council boards. She discussed the three purposes of the DC Coordinator position: assist with 

coordination between the City and DCs, assist with DC training, help DCs build capacity/find 

cost sharing opportunities. Board members are encouraged to register early, as there are a 

limited number of spaces available. 

C. City Budget Crisis 

On January 13, 2009, Lee Helgen held a meeting with District Council representatives to 

discuss the City budget. David Arbeit, Camille Schafer, Rhonda Debough, and Marcy Micek 

attended from District 10. David reported that the Governor unalloted funds at the end of 

2008 and significant reductions in the City budget are anticipated this year. There is a real 

possibility that rec centers will be closed (there are two in District 10). Lee asked for 

input/creative ideas from District Councils on the cuts that will need to be made. The budget 

cuts could also adversely affect District Council funding. 

IV. Review, Amend, Approve December minutes 

Marcy moved to approve the December minutes and Chris Martineau seconded. Unanimously 

approved. 

V. Board Updates 

A. Board Chair Report 

 David renegotiated our lease agreement to keep rent at $300/month rather than raising it to 

$330/month for the next 2 years. In addition, we will get a parking space in the lot north of 

the Streetcar Station. He also encouraged Board members to attend the Volunteer Awards 

Ceremony this Friday, January 23, 2009.  

B. Treasurer’s Report 

 Marcy presented the 2009 budget, which David described as an “austerity” budget (it  covers 

just the basics to keep our operation running). There is a new revenue line budgeted for 

fundraising, which will be especially needed in light of the budget crisis. The Community 

Organization Partnership Program (COPP) revenue shown in the budget is for 2009. We did 

receive word at the end of December that Councilmember Russ Stark is also granting us 

money for 2008; that money will be used to cover 2008 expenses. 

 Leah Johnson, member of the Financial Development Committee, did a short presentation on 

the financial contribution many Boards require their members to make. The Committee is 

asking Board members to make a contribution to District 10, in whatever amount they can. 

 

Board Meeting Minutes 

January 20, 2009 

Page 3 of 4 

Leah distributed pledge cards and asked that Board members think about any contacts they 

have that we could solicit for fundraising. David asked Diane Wanner if she knew if any 

other district councils require contributions from the board members. Diane didn’t know, but 

Ramsey County Commissioner Janice Rettman said that long ago District 6 did.  

 

C. Staff Report 

Rhonda Debough reported that she is working with the Capitol Region Watershed District 

and Como Alliance to do a Spring event (perhaps an open house). The E-blasts (mass email 

distribution) is going well. Ken Kunkle suggested selling ad space on E-blasts. The Financial 

Development Committee is talking about the garage sale on May 16. Sehoya Cotner 

suggested having coffee, snacks, and District 10 information to distribute at the sale. 

Camille Schafer reported that doing electronic Board packets rather than sending through 

U.S. mail saved us $40 in postage this month. She has received the 2009 Neighborhood 

Cleanup information. 

D. Committee Reports 

Land Use – Barbara Frick discussed the T-Mobile tower issue. There will be more 

community meetings. She says some neighbors don’t believe their input will make a 

difference, so no one showed up for the last meeting. David suggested District 10 may need 

to host a meeting to demonstrate our concern and to encourage involvement. Ted invited 

Luke Kuhl to their last meeting to describe the history of the Lexington-Larpenteur Node 

Study. The 2009 work plan will include Como Pool, Node Study, and Midway Parkway. 

Sholom Home Reuse – Scott Baker reported that the committee met with Sholom Home 

representatives. The committee will be putting out an electronic survey. 

Neighborhood Relations – Chris Martineau and Rhonda Debough will meet with Mike 

Hahm, Director of St. Paul Parks and Rec, next week. The committee needs members. Its  

purpose is to develop lists of connections in the District. It intends to develop a database of 

contacts that the Board could consult. 

Environment – Mike MaDonald reported that they are putting on a 3-lecture series on saving 

energy. Another rain barrel workshop will be held on May 9 at Lyngblomsten. The 

Committee is trying to get a grant from the Capitol Region Watershed District to defray the 

cost of the workshop. 

VI. Discussion Items 

A. 2009 Work Plan and City Contract 

David asked that work plans be submitted by 2/28/09 to ensure we don’t suffer a cash 

shortfall. He would like the Board to endorse the goals put forward in the work plans. 

B. Capital Improvement Budget Task Force 

David said that we are still looking for people to join this task force. The deadline to submit 

candidates is February 2, 2009. This committee reviews capital improvement projects being 

considered by the City. 

VII. Action Items 

A. Financial Report and 2009 Budget Adoption 

 

Board Meeting Minutes 

January 20, 2009 

Page 4 of 4 

Action Item: Adopt 2009 Budget 

Marc Prokosch moved to adopt the budget and Mike MacDonald seconded. Approved 

unanimously. 

B. Committee Charter Actions 

Action Item: Adopt submitted/revised charters as a group  

Marcy Micek will revise committee membership section of Financial Development 

Committee Charter. Chris Martineau will revise the title section of Neighborhood Relations 

Committee Charter. We are tabling this item for now. 

C. Work Plan Action 

Action Item: Adopt submitted/revised work plans as a group 

This item will be tabled. David would like Board members to read through the 2008 work 

plans and do a self-assessment on how well we did in accomplishing our goals. David will 

send out an email with a link to work plans and survey. 

D. Grant Proposal to Capitol Region Watershed District (CRWD) 

Action Item: Approve grant request for rain barrel workshop 

We are requesting funding from the CRWD to supplement the fees being charged 

participants. Mike MacDonald moved to approve this request and John Bjork seconded. 

Unanimously approved. 

VIII. Adjourn 

Meeting adjourned at 9:30 p.m. 

Minutes submitted by Marcy Micek. 

District 10 Como Community Council | 1224 Lexington Pkwy N, Saint Paul, MN 55103 | 651.644.3889 | district10 [at] district10comopark.org

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