DISTRICT 10 COMO COMMUNITY COUNCIL BOARD MEETING
Historic Streetcar Station
1224 Lexington Parkway North, St Paul, MN 55103
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
I. Call to Order: Chair Jon Knox called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.
II. Board Introductions:
Present: Jon Knox, Chris Harkness, Linda Hinderscheit, Kim Moon, Laurie Erickson, Dick Dian, Penny Spence, Panod Klongtruatroke, Ron Edlund, Tom Eyre and Kate Wilinski
Absent: Jody McCardle, Betsy Wehrwein, Barbara Clark, and Ted Blank
Staff Present: Jessie Bronk
III. Review, Amend, Approval of Agenda:
Motion: Approve the agenda. (Moon-Harkness) Passed.
IV. COMMUNITY SECTION:
A. Board Chair Report: On May 23, Jon Knox will take a bus tour of all the Salvation Army sites, which assist homeless teenagers, and will report to us at next month's meeting. Panod reported that he talked to the owner of St. Paul Traditions (formerly Sholom Home). They are finalizing their insurance coverage for repairs that were necessary due to a water pipe break. They will soon start renovations, and will come to report at a future Council meeting.
B. Treasurer’s Report: Penny Spence did not have a formal report today due to some delays outside of her control. Our accountant will hire a new person soon.
C. Central Corridor Transit Study: Charles Carlson, of Metro Transit, presented on the Central Corridor Metro Transit study, including the arterial study. The study will be released for public comment soon. Routes will be reconfigured to connect better with the Central Corridor Light Rail, which is now 50% complete. Routes in about 1/3rd of the city will be reconfigured (between Larpenteur and the Mississippi River, east to 35E). Planned changes include increasing service on routes 87 and 84 (both north-south routes). There is future potential for a new north-south route serving Lexington Ave. and Como Park. Mr. Carlson said if there is community interest in a Lexington/Como Park route, the residents should voice their support. There is often resident opposition to new bus lines. There are no plans for park and ride lots for the Central Corridor specifically. Arterial Transitway Corridors Study: Eleven corridors, which serve about 1/2 of total ridership in Minneapolis and St. Paul, were studied. On these routes, the buses are in motion only about 43% of the time. Most of the remainder of the time is spent boarding passengers and waiting at red lights. "Rapid Bus" would reduce boarding time. Corridors would have individualized plans. Other cities have seen 20% reduced transit time and 20% increased ridership when “rapid buses” are used. Of the 11 corridors studied here, Snelling Avenue and West 7th Street were recommended to "implement in near future," with Snelling Ave. receiving a higher technical score. The rapid bus line would run from Rosedale Center down Snelling, turn at Ford Parkway, cross the Mississippi river, and then run along 46th Steet in Minneapolis to meet the Hiawatha Light Rail Line. The study will look for resident input into designing the stations. There will be informal outreach throughout the process and a formal public hearing. The goal is to have the Snelling Rapid Bus Line open by late 2014 (after Light Rail is completed).
D. Miscellaneous community discussion: Two members of the Park Bugle board were here to introduce themselves and get an idea of what issues affect District 10.
V. BOARD BUSINESS SECTION:
A. Review/Amend/Approve Minutes & Financial Statements:
Motion: Approve agenda, financial statements and minutes of 4/17/2012meeting as amended by Kim Moon. (Moon-Klongtruatroke) Passed
Minutes of 4/17/2012 minutes, section IV.E., Como Regional Park Advisory Committee Update: “Three firms submitted an RFP,” should read, “Three firms responded to an RFP.”
B. Staff Report: Jessie Bronk reported that the Executive Committee approved a $50 donation to help fund costs for the district council leadership series and neighborhood honor roll. City grants have been revised and will be submitted tomorrow. There is an increase of over 20 sites for the neighborhood garage sale compared to last year and an increase of over 30 compared to 2010. Jessie received a report of someone who has a history of panhandling and high-pressure tactics at garage sales. Jessie will send out a notice to garage sale participants. The poster and brochure for Como Fest (formerly Staycation) are almost complete. The next block club leader meeting will be on June 7th.
C. 2012 City grants: Jessie reported that we are still awaiting approval of our city grant requests. She has been keeping monthly financials and reimbursements updated, so she will be ready to submit them when the grants are approved.
D. Ward 5 COPP funding: Amy Brendmoen contacted the District 10 Community Council to indicate that limited Ward 5 COPP funding is available. The deadline for submission is June 15th. Constant Contact is the service we use for our weekly e-blast. Funding was previously covered by COPP grants, but has expired. Jon suggested we apply for funding for Constant Contact for two years from Ward 5 COPP grants. Chris Harkness suggested we apply for funding to cover 3 years of Constant Contact. Jessie will investigate funding and write a proposal, which will be reviewed at the next Executive Committee meeting.
Motion: Apply for Ward 5 COPP grant funding to cover Constant Contact costs for multiple years. (Klongtruatroke-Spence) Passed.
E. Constant Contact renewal- board approval: See above.
F. Land Use Action Item- Hmong Sports Festival: The Sports Festival run by the Lao Family has become an important cultural event. The major issues of the last few years have been traffic, noise and parking. The Lao Family, the St. Paul Police & Parks Departments have increased use of the shuttle from the State Fair Parking Lot to the Festival; increased trash pick-up, including going into neighborhoods and picking up festival trash from neighborhood yards, and have worked to reduce excessive noise issues. There were very few statements made at the community meeting held at the Streetcar Station on Wednesday, May 9, that related to issues that affect the neighborhood during this festival. D10 appreciates the efforts of the Lao Family and the City of St. Paul to reduce the negative impact of the Hmong Sports Festival's traffic/parking, noise, potential criminal behavior and trash on the Como neighborhood. We hope this cooperative effort with the surrounding neighborhood will continue.
Motion: That the Board vote to recommend sending a letter to the City in support of the Lao Family Sports Festival being held in Como Park. (Moon-Harkness) Passed.
G. Committee Updates
a. Land Use Committee: Kim Moon indicated that there were no additional issues to discuss. A report of the last meeting was included in the board packet.
b. District Plan Ad Hoc Committee : Chris Harkness reported that there have been 12 applicants for the intern position, with the posting closing this Friday.
c. Neighborhood Relations & Safety Committee: Ted Blank & Betsy Wehrwein were not present. Written reports were in the board packet.
d. District Operations Committee: Jody McCardle was not present. Jessie presented an action item, which was drafted by Jody, to request funding in order to send out a fundraising appeal to the neighborhood. Total cost could be approximately $1500 to send an appeal to approximately 5000 households. Jessie reported that Jody was confident that there would be a positive return on the investment. Penny indicated there was not a budget item to support this in this year’s budget. Jessie asked if we could take costs from our reserve funds. There may be some savings in other areas that we could use for this. Linda indicated that she would be more comfortable approving this if we could see the language in the letter (need to be specific about what we would do with the money and why we need it). Chris indicated she would be more comfortable if the funding streams financing the printing and mailing were better known. Jon suggested we table this but encouraged Jody to draft a letter for Board review. Kate Wilinski indicated she is willing to help. This issue was tabled until the next meeting.
e. Environment Committee: Ron Edlund reported that the Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom received the St. Paul Heritage Preservation award tonight at City Hall. Minutes of past meetings were in the board packet. The committee is moving ahead to plan 3-4 sessions of the Sunday series for next year. Panod asked if there was a way to "pass the hat" at future Sunday series presentations. Panod also asked Ron if there was a way to approach the city to get guest passes for parking in the restricted areas for the garden tour during Como Fest (some garden tour participants got ticketed last year). The committee will discuss the latter two issues at its meeting tomorrow night.
f. Bylaw Review- Adhoc Committee: Panod Klongtruatroke reported that the committee has been meeting weekly recently. They plan to have a draft to submit for review in June or July. The committee enlisted Ted Sheu, a former board member and a lawyer, to review the Bylaws revision. The committee has been reviewing bylaws from other district councils. The goal is to have a final version ready for a vote at the October meeting of the board.
V. Adjourn: The meeting was adjourned at 8:39 p.m.
Motion to adjourn. (Spence-Harkness) Passed.
Respectfully submitted by Linda R. Hinderscheit, Secretary
These minutes were approved on 6/19/2012.