EPNA February 6, 2020 meeting minutes
Meeting called to order at 6:30 PM.
Welcome and introductions.
Approval of January meeting minutes:
- Motion made, seconded, and passed to approve the meeting minutes.
Community officer update:
- North Police District Officer Leiterman attended and discussed the shooting at Pawling/Dahle. He said it was a targeted shooting, the general community is not at risk, and that the Violent Crimes Unit is involved.
- Questions were asked about other drug dealing residences and problems. Officer Leiterman said to never worry about calling the police if there is something you think is suspicious. Use the non-emergency number of 255-2345 or call 911.
- A question was asked about the safety of the Eken Park neighborhood and he said our rate of crime is less than many other areas of the city.
- Our new neighborhood resource officer will be Officer Garcia. He will take over that position by next month’s meeting.
Guest speaker Paul Noeldner of the Friends of Hartmeyer Natural area:
- Paul gave a presentation on the benefits of the wetland and surrounding uplands, and how the development of the Oscar Mayer area will impact the Hartmeyer Natural area. It is currently 30 acres and will be greatly reduced in size unless plans are changed.
- His ask to the neighborhood is that the community send an email saying, “I support saving the Hartmeyer” to all alders at the following addresses: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. It is urgent that this be done before the planning commission meeting this coming Monday.
Alder Syed Abbas’ update:
- Alder Abbas supports preserving the Hartmeyer Natural Area. He got the city to approve $20,000 for an appraisal and evaluation. People need to attend meetings to voice their support for preserving it.
- Oscar Mayer Special Area Plan update: Alder Abbas held a public meeting at Bashford church and the city held a meeting at Oscar Mayer. The Eken Park Neighborhood Association submitted a letter approving the project overall but opposing the opening of Coolidge Street eastbound from Packers Avenue. Traffic engineering did not approve the four way traffic signal, but the plan commission went ahead with the design. Alder Abbas has requested a report on the number of recent accidents on Coolidge and Myrtle streets. The next meeting will be in front of the Plan Commission on Monday, February 10. Show up before 5:30 to register to talk. After the Plan Commission it will go to the city council. Beth Sluys from the Northside Neighborhood Council added that she has an email from Canadian Pacific railroad saying they will not approve any at grade crossings.
- Dunkin Donuts update: Alder Abbas held a public meeting. Concerns were raised at the meeting about Moka coffee and People’s Bakery being in the immediate vicinity and the impact Dunkin may have on local businesses. Other issues brought up included the drive-through entrance at Oak and E. Washington and the impact that may have on Bus Rapid Transit. People with concerns need to email the alders and show up to meetings. Our alder will give updates when there are more to report. A concern was raised at tonight’s meeting about the property being left vacant if Dunkin did not move in. The alder advised that other businesses are interested in the property including a small grocer, but Dunkin is willing to pay the most for the site.
- The two standing committees are the Festival Committee and the Greenspace Committee. They will be working on a plan to publicize, put in writing their purpose, and set a budget. The Greenspace committee maintains the butterfly garden, medians on Commercial Avenue, areas of Washington Manor park, and other places.
- There are two temporary/ad hoc committees: Voucher Committee and Gateway Committee. Ben from the Gateway Committee said the installation of the butterflies will take place this summer. Erich from the Voucher Committee presented his committee charter. Motion made, seconded, and passed to confirm the purpose of the Voucher Committee.
- People are encouraged to join the committees. You do need to be a member to join, but you do not have to attend the membership meetings.
- Alder Abbas requested that any emails regarding Coolidge Street and Oscar Mayer be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, and NOT to all alders before the Monday meeting.
- Tom R. requested that an Outreach Committee be established again.
- Zach requested a letter of support be sent from EPNA to the city in support of preserving all 30 acres of the Hartmeyer area. Motion made, seconded, and passed.
- Motion made, seconded, and passed to authorize the Festival Committee to spend up to $2,500 for upfront costs and they are to submit a list of expenses to the membership.
Motion to adjourn was made, seconded, and approved. Meeting adjourned at 7:30