SNA’s annual Fall Cookoff will take place on Wednesday October 30th at 6pm at Seven Stars on Hope Street! This year’s ingredient is PEAR. Yes, PEAR!
We’re pleased to announce the results of our Lippitt Park Little Free Library Art Contest. The winner is Xander Guilhardi, age 7! His winning work is shown above and will be featured on the new Little Free Library in the Lippitt Park playground, sponsored by the Friends of Rochambeau Library. He will also receive the first prize of a $25 art supply gift certificate. Kelsey Corrigan, age 10, won second prize of a $15 art supply gift certificate, and Maria, age 11, won third prize of a $10 art supply gift certificate. The judging was challenging with so many excellent entries from which to choose. Thank you to all who entered! And big thanks to local business Jerry’s Artarama at 653 North Main Street for donating the gift certificates to us!
SNA is pleased to help bring neighbors outdoor family movie nights in Lippitt Park! These were a big success last year, and we’re excited that they’ll be back — and the first is this week: Wednesday, July 17th, at 7pm! The second is scheduled for Wednesday, August 21st.
Here’s a description from our friends at the Providence Children’s Film Festival and Cricket Cinema:
“I screen… You screen… We ALL screen to watch breathtaking films in a beautiful Providence Park! The Providence Children’s Film Festival and the Cricket Cinema are delighted to partner up once again with the Summit Neighborhood Association and Hope Street Merchants Association to present two screenings under the stars in Lippitt Park this summer. On Wednesday, July 17th an award winning reel of short films titled BODIES IN MOTION (synopsis below) will return from it’s premiere last February at the festival. Popcorn will be poppin’ and feet will be stompin’ for this show beginning just after the sun sets in the west. Pack a picnic, grab a blanket and claim your spot on the lawn. The event is free and all ages are welcome!
BODIES IN MOTION: People express so much through their body language. Sometimes it’s planned like a dance, other times it’s a spontaneous reaction to an environment, or a protest to an injustice done. Be warned that after watching these films you might be inspired to “speak” a different body language. This reel includes a dance done completely underwater, a girl determined to be taught the art of wire walking, and a sloth that should never order ice cream again! (In English or no dialogue / 2016-2018 / 80 min / recommended for all ages)
This screening would not be possible without the generous support of the 2019 Eat Play Learn Neighborhood Performing Arts Initiative presented by Mayor Jorge O. Elorza, the Providence Art Culture Tourism, the Department of Parks and Recreation, the Partnership for Providence Parks, with support from the Office of Economic Opportunity Youth Advanced Summer Internship Team.
Location: Lippitt Memorial Park – 1015 Hope St, Providence, RI
Follow PCFF and/or SNA on Facebook for last minute changes due to weather conditions.”
SNA hosted a discussion on June 17th regarding the City Council leadership’s proposed property tax changes following the recent mandatory revaluation that occurred. Ward 3 City Councilor Nirva LaFortune shared her understanding and opinion of the situation, and fielded audience questions along with fellow elected officials District 4 State Representative Rebecca Kislak and Ward 1 City Councilor Seth Yurdin. The city must decide on a tax structure soon to tax residential property on their new valuations. There are two proposals in play as of June 18, 2019, each of which would comply with the state mandate that no city or town increase TOTAL taxes by more than 4% in one year: the Elorza administration’s proposal and the City Council leadership’s proposal. We’ll post resources here in an ongoing manner with an eye toward impartial information and statements by our local elected officials. Please share with us via SNAProv@gmail.com if you encounter sources that you think would be helpful to folks.
[Update as of 7/3/19: The controversial tax changes are off the table for this year. The Council switched to a more conventional proposal. The mayor has yet to approve it and may veto it, since it is part of a budget that includes some cuts that could be viewed as controversial. See Boston Globe article below. “The budget the council will vote on Wednesday would set one property tax rate — $24.56 per $1,000 of assessed value — for all homes, with a 40 percent exemption going to individuals who live in the properties they own. The proposal means anyone who was already getting a tax decrease under Elorza’s plan would get a larger one now, and residents who were getting a tax increase are getting a slightly smaller increase.”]
[Update as of 7/15/19: the city budget has been signed by Mayor Elorza, and includes the more conventional property tax structure. City Council leadership stated that while they were unsuccessful this year, they wish to try to make the change to a two-tiered structure again next year.]
- Previous FY 2019 Tax Structure:
- Existing Fiscal Year 2019 Tax Rates for Cities and Towns Statewide (R.I. Department of Revenue – Division of Municipal Finance) Providence’s is $18.80 per $1,000 of value for owner-occupied homes; $31.96 per $1,000 of value for non-owner-occupied homes.
- Existing Fiscal Year 2019 Providence Property Tax Exemptions (for senior citizens, veterans, blind, etc.) (City of Providence – Tax Assessors)
- FY 2020 Tax Structure Saga:
- June 6th: Providence seeks to shield poor neighborhoods from property-tax spike (Providence Journal)
- June 13th: Providence Council leaders reveal plan to revamp property taxes (WPRI Channel 12)
- June 16th: District 4 State Representative Rebecca Kislak’s e-mail newsletter
- June 17th: East Siders sound off on City Council tax proposal (WPRI Channel 12)
- June 17th: Ward 3 City Councilor Nirva LaFortune’s e-mail newsletter
- June 19th: Providence Budget Battle — South Side Says It’s Time for East Side to Pay, Igliozzi Looks for Cuts (GoLocalProv – note this outlet does not follow some accepted journalistic practices such as listing the author’s byline, however, the article does provide some information and quotes not available elsewhere)
- New property tax calculator – you can compare what your taxes would be under the mayor’s plan and the City Council leadership’s plan (Web tool developed by local resident Bil Herron) [7/3/19 note: this calculator is for the Council’s controversial proposal prior to 6/26/19 after which they changed tack and released a more conventional plan.]
- June 26th: Controversial Providence tax plan is off the table for this year (WPRI Channel 12)
- July 3rd: In Providence, mayor and City Council just can’t seem to get along (Boston Globe – mentions the tax issue)
- July 9th: Elorza signs $770 million budget; tax bills to go out soon (WPRI Channel 12)
- July 9th: Providence City Council gives final approval to $770-million budget (Providence Journal)
- August 14th: Providence’s richest ZIP code getting biggest tax break, data reveals (WPRI Channel 12)
We had a lot of fun at our tent at the Hope Street Block Party this past weekend, where we offered artists of all ages the chance to create a “quilt” square! Click here if you missed your chance to become a member and support neighborhood events, programs, and projects big and small — such as this weekend’s free art activity!
On Monday, April 29th, Summit Neighborhood Association held its annual membership meeting at the Highlands on the East Side. Roughly 45 neighbors attended and enjoyed refreshments from Rhode Island’s own Foolproof Beer, Diamond Hill Winery, and My Daddy’s Pizza.
SNA President Ethan Gyles reviewed the past year’s activities and shared SNA’s plans for projects, events, and programs for the coming year. Audience members each had the chance to review a list of ideas and return a checklist to indicate whether they were interested in leading or volunteering for one or more of them, along with suggestions for additional ideas.
One of the main events of the meeting was the election of the Board of Directors and its officers for the coming year. The officers are Ethan Gyles, President; Thomas Schmeling, Vice-President, Britt Page, Treasurer, Laura Ramsey, Secretary; Erik Christiansen, Newsletter Secretary. Returning Board members are Anneliese Greenier, Anna Highsmith, Read Porter, and Sharon Lee Waldman. New Board members are Ariel Pittner, Torin Mathieu, Zachary Barnes, and Christopher Lowe.
We heard from our first-term State Representative Rebecca Kislak. She updated us on current issues and outlined her legislative agenda, then engaged in Q&A with the audience.
The Sheila Perlow Award was presented to Greg Gerritt for his long and dedicated work on behalf of the environment and on issues of social and economic justice. Greg is a longtime Summit resident who has continually showed a strong spirit of civic engagement and volunteerism. The award is named for Sheila Perlow, a long-time Summit Neighborhood Association board member, dedicated community volunteer, vibrant personality, and kind friend to many.
Thanks to The Highlands on the East Side for hosting us!
The Highlands Assisted Living at 101 Highland Avenue are hosting a silent auction fundraiser for the Alzheimer’s Assocaition on June 21. The Highlands have generously allowed SNA the use of their dining room space for our Annual Meetings for years now, and we’re pleased to share this worthy event.
We’re sharing a message from Miriam Hospital below. This is a good one to take note of, because seeing decontamination tents and such could be alarming if one wasn’t aware it was a drill:
“As part of our mission, delivering health with care, we frequently hold drills for emergency preparedness. On May 8,  The Miriam Hospital will conduct a drill for hazardous exposures. Neighbors will see activity around the hospital including the installation of our hazardous decontamination tents and more. Security will be onsite to assist with traffic or any other issues as they arise. Please do not be alarmed when you see this activity next week. You can call the Neighborhood Hotline at any time at 401.793.4040.”