ANA Annual Meeting Minutes
ANA board members in attendance: Kelly Falsani, Denis Houle, Steve Johnson, Nikki Lindberg, Betsen Philip, Noah Schuchman, Alisha Strowbridge, Keith Swanson
ANA staff member: Jen Swanson.
30+ others in attendance.
Quarterly Safety Meeting – called to order at 6:06 pm by Keith Swanson and Amy Lavender
- Announced that this is the quarterly meeting, and our next Safety meeting will be in June. Amy presented an overview of recent activity. Since January 1 very little crime has taken place in the Armatage neighborhood (details available on handouts at meeting or online). A Burglary Prevention Workshop will be held March 27 at 7pm at the Church of the Good Shepard (4801 France). All are welcome.
- Inspector Matt Clark, commander of the 5th precinct, was in attendance, and wanted to share some summer strategies for crime prevention, and to hear about concerns from our neighborhood. He noted we live in a very low crime area of the city and precinct. Violent crimes are down, but property crimes are up across the city. A citizen raised a concern about a particular incident in which she was involved. Inspector Clark responded to her concerns, and offered to discuss more outside of the public meeting. Concerns were raised by a couple of citizens about speeding on Penn Ave between Highway 62 and 58th Street. He will increase patrols and ticketing in that area to see if it has an effect. He was also asked about who to call if you suspect drug activity. If it is taking place right now, call 9-1-1, otherwise you can report concerns to 3-1-1 or forward to Amy Lavender.
Welcome – ANA President Alisha Strowbridge called the meeting to order at 6:33 pm
Armatage Street Work Overview – Tracy Lindgren & Jeff Handeland
- Tracy Lindgren (Engineer, Paving Construction, City of Minneapolis) presented on the resurfacing project to take place this summer in Armatage. The affected area is from 54th to 58th Streets, between Penn and Xerxes Avenues (but not including Penn, Xerxes and 54th). The current road condition rating puts in the perfect range for resurfacing and will extend the life of the road. This section was paved originally in 1982, and thus is why this is the area of the project. The project is paid for from assessments and bond funds. A uniform assessment rate is used for all of Minneapolis. A handout explained the project details and the assessment fee structure.
- Homes affected by any parking restrictions will receive a robo-call, as well as see signs posted about restrictions. The project is also being done in conjunction with some utility projects, and so will allow for that work to be completed before doing the actual resurfacing (probably sometime in August). Once the asphalt has been spread, it can take 4-8 hours for the road to be usable. Crews will open the road as soon as the temperature is cool enough for traffic. It is not expected that we will see another project like this in our neighborhood real soon, as the city is trying to spread these project resources around the entire city each summer. There are no plans to bury any overhead utilities at this point.
- Jeff Handeland (Project Engineer, Penn Avenue S Reconstruction) presented on the reconstruction of Penn Avenue. The project will occur in two phases from 2013-2014. The first phase in 2013 will affect Penn from the Crosstown to 54th; the second phase in 2014 will affect Penn from 54th to 50th. Details of the plan can be viewed at http://www.minneapolismn.gov/cip/all/wcms1p-083125.
- The first phase is coordinated with the plans with MDOT to resurface the Penn Ave. bridge in the hope of minimizing disruption to the neighborhood. A number of ash trees will be removed, but new trees will be planted. Some changes we can expect to see include wider boulevards, a narrower street, intersection bump outs for increased pedestrian safety, left turn lanes for some northbound intersections. Assessments are done in the same manner as the materials presented by Tracy.
- Jeff was asked whether this will be similar to the Lyndale Ave. reconstruction, and he didn’t think it was too similar (not as much lane shifting). There will be some reduction in parking in some areas (because of road width requirements). Some of the proposed narrowing is to help reduce speeds on Penn Avenue and improve pedestrian safety. They will do their best to keep our access across Penn Ave. open, but some closures will be unavoidable during the construction period from April through October.
- A questions was also raised about potholes, which can be reported to 3-1-1.
Secretary of State Mark Ritchie
- Mark Ritchie spoke about some of the responsibilities of the Secretary of State’s including the elections, support for businesses, assisting with adoptions, notaries, etc., as well as managing the process for government boards, committees, commissions, etc.
- Their office is also responsible for current and historical civic information. They are currently working in partnership with the History Center to bring the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights to Minnesota (April 3 – July 4). He handed out flag etiquette flyers to those in attendance; their most requested brochure. He also had information about becoming an election judge, and noted that there is a special trainee judge program available to 16 and 17 year olds.
- He wants his office to be accessible to all Minnesota residents, and if your organization would like someone from their office to visit your group, please contact them.
- He opened the floor for questions and was asked about his position on the voter ID issue. Although it is the responsibility of his office to oversee and help implement the laws, not to legislate, he does not support the implementation of voter ID. First, he doesn’t see the legislation as having strong bi-partisan support. Second, he believes it will disenfranchise both older and younger voters: older voters, because some 84,000 senior citizens don’t have photo ID, and younger voters because it will eliminate same day voter registration and implement provisional balloting. He explained the potential costs and delayed election results which can stem from provisional balloting as creating problems in a system that isn’t broken (and, in fact, is a model system for other states) siting that with some 540,000 people using same-day registration in the last presidential election, and with our election recall, only a handful of ballots were debated by the review team.
- Alicia thanked Mark Ritchie, and commented about the ANA 365 photos which were showing during meeting, and announced that we are looking for photographers to be involved next year.
City Council Update – Betsy Hodges
- Betsy called attention to the email list for Ward 13. She gave a brief budget update, explaining the budgeting process, the approval for a 0% increase to property taxes (helped by resolving the pension fund issue), and that individual property taxes, however, are not 0% due to other factors affecting individual homeowners and businesses. Betsy re-stated her opposition to any public funding for a Vikings stadium.
- The city will be requiring compostable bags for yard waste, with April 9 as the first pick up, and there will be a 4-weeks grace period. Call 3-1-1 for more info. It was noted that 3-1-1 wasn’t working for Sprint users, and that there could be issues with dead spots. An option is to use the 10-digit city information number: 612.673.3000. She was also asked about the future of single sort recycling. The decision right now looks to be between single or dual sort, and the city is looking a current infrastructure to determine which makes the most sense and there should be more information in April. She was also asked whether building contractors have any recycling regulations. She wasn’t aware of any, but did say the city was looking at how to encourage large city events, like the Uptown Art Fair, to recycle.
- Transit is a big issue right now, and more information can be found online as the various options continue to be researched and discussed. The city no longer requires bike licensing, but they do require pet licenses. They have reduced the fees to encourage participation, and she encourages you to license your pet as it greatly increases your chances of getting a lost pat back home.
ANA Board Election
Nominations were opened to the floor for the open Board positions. Jeff Forss nominated himself, and was written onto the ballot. The slate of Denis Houle, Nicole Lindberg, Noah Schuchman, Jim Steely, and Alisha Strowbridge, as well as Jeff, were elected to the ANA board.
Meeting adjourned at 8:08 p.m.