Meeting Minutes, January 20, 2011 [uncorrected draft]

Vice President Mike Keeler presided.

Minutes of the November 18, 2010 meeting were read by Secretary Paul Streby and approved.

Cindy Robinson gave the treasurer’s report. The General Fund balance is $837.80, and the Beautification Fund balance is $838.94, for a total of $1676.74. The treasurer’s report was approved.

Mike read a letter from President Sherry Hayden thanking volunteers who have helped her, and proposing hiring a student to help with clerical tasks. We approved a motion to pay a student up to $100 over this year if a volunteer is not available.

Michael Kelly reported that Mott College enrollment is over 12,000. He apologised for the usual beginning-of-semester traffic congestion on Court St. He invited neighbors to an open house on January 21, 10am-6pm at the Fab Lab, which has some of the latest equipment for creating prototypes. For example, a company used the Fab Lab to test and redesign pliers they plan on marketing. The library is open and functional, but exterior work continues.

Kay Kelly announced that a grant helps pay teens for work at Kearsley Park. The Shakespeare Festival raised over $9,000, which helps pay for other projects. The Flint Folk Festival will be July 29-30. Players in Jack & the Beanstalk each were paid $50. Trail repairs are planned; wetland status may be desirable because of the recurrent flooding.

Rhina Griffel announced that the League of Women Voters is showing a film on February 10  about redistricting and gerrymandering. Members of the legislative redistricting commission for the County will be at a forum on February 17. Both events are at the Mott RTC, at 7pm. She proposed that the CCNA become a co-sponsor of the events; we would help get word out, but have no financial commitment.

Mike Herriman and Craig Wolcott gave a report on the latest College Cultural Neighborhood Watch. They are working with other neighborhood watches. CCNW has begun receiving crime statistics from the Flint Police Department. The Red Alert has only been used twice in this neighborhood, but scaling it to the whole city might be tricky. Reports began in November and are going forward. Looking at statistics will help show patterns to criminal activity. Some areas are well-covered with block captains, others are not. Eyes-and-ears helped catch burglary suspects recently. They recommended installing motion sensors. Police officers have told them that crime in the neighborhood seems to be down since the Watch began. Burned-out or obscured street lights can be reported to Consumers Power. It’s important to call 911 when people are seen trespassing in back yards, because they are often fleeing the police.

New neighbors introduced themselves.

Andy Everman thanked people who helped with clearing overgrowth in parks, fixed the tractor, and chipped in money for fuel. Mowing parks in the neighborhood cost over $800, but was covered by donations. Woodside Church expects a new interim pastor soon. The wooded area needs some cleanup, It is intended to serve as an area for meditation, plays, and other activities.

City Councilman Dale Weighill recently accepted a new deanship at Mott. The house at 801 S. Vernon is on the demolition list. It will probably be demolished in the next 90 days. Dale voted against issuing a $20M bond to erase previous debts. He submitted a list of questions to the mayor, but the vote came down before the answers had been supplied. An auditor said that at the current rate of spending, the $20M will be spent within a year-and-a-half, and paid off over 20+ years. The mayor is recommending a two-mill tax to replace community policing; otherwise, probably 17 officers will be laid off. Another proposal would fund the City Jail with two mills; this was postponed until more information. The City Council budgeted for housing inmates in other counties where costs are lower; the Chief of Police opted against using this line. The Council approved a resolution asking the Legislature to allow a referendum on raising the property tax.

Tom Nobles announced that the Flint Community Players are staging Dearly Departed the first two weekends in March. Tickets are available throught the Whiting box office.