The meeting came to order at 7:00 PM.
Members Present: Jim Barfoot, Chris Bull, Grant Dulgarian, Anneliese Greenier, Harriet Hemphill, Kerry Kohring, Sheila Perlow, Peter Sandby-Thomas, Thomas Schmeling, Dean Weinberg.
Members Absent: Anthony Arrigo, Sierra Barter, Daren Bulley, Martha Fraenkel, Howie Gladstone, Claude Goldman, Daniel MacLellan, Britt Page, Jesse Polhemus, Joan Retsinas, Mary Ann Rossoni.
Guests: Brett Smiley (Mayoral Candidate), Abbey Jacobson (neighbor), Ruth Lloyd (neighbor), Rick Harkins (neighbor), Michelle Harkins (neighbor) Lee Pichette and Vishal Jain (incoming board members) John Bazik (SNA listserv manager).
President’s Report (Dean):
This is the last meeting of the current Board. March 3rd is our annual meeting and the election of new members. This is a good time to review goals and plan new ones.
Dean spoke with Bob McMahon about the Community Garden. Things look good for a spring start. The Music Festival grant application has just come out and Dean is working on that. We did not get a grant last year but hope to this time.
The annual meeting is upcoming with different format. All five Providence mayoral candidates have confirmed that they will attend. Campus Fine Wine and Blaze will sponsor. The new location for the event is the Highlands on Highland Ave behind Home and Hospice.
Minutes. Motion to approve corrected January minutes by Kerry. Second by Sheila. All in favor.
Treasurer’s report (Harriet):
Harriet raised the question of whether we should roll North Main Street funds into the rest of funds. Dean noted that these funds are not formally restricted. This has been checked and confirmed. Dean requested that we wait to make any decision until members who might have strong feelings are present. Tom moved to postpone a decision. Anneliese seconded. All in favor.
The unofficial committee is Sierra, Kerry, Tom.
Kerry: Valarie Houshar, director of Highlands, wants to know what we need (tables, assistants, etc.) Kerry is planning a meeting with her. The dining room accommodates 60 people, but there are side rooms for spill-over.
Jim Barfoot recommended clearing up the date for the community at large. East Side Monthly did have the date as 3/3. We have posted the date and location on the Website. Dean will email the listserv.
Newsletters, which contain the correct date, were distributed to carriers last Sat and are in process of being delivered.
Harriet will bring copies of the annual financial statement to set out on tables.
Dean pointed to Kerry’s contributions and thanked him for accepting the VP position.
Kerry will have profiles of new members for annual meeting, We will take nominations from the floor.
A short discussion followed regarding the procedures for voting and the format of the ballot. Jim Barfoot moved and Sheila seconded, to leave it to the nominating committee to work out the mechanics of the ballot
Community Garden. (See above).
We’ve raised $15k. Bob McMahon hopes to put it to bid in March. Our next step is organizing community involvement days for volunteer work groups. We still need to put together the group that will run the garden.
Guest Michelle Harkins asked where she can see plans. Some discussion regarding the nature of the plan followed. Plots will be raised beds. Anthony is chair of this committee but he is moving out of the neighborhood. Anybody who wants to be a member of that committee (including non board members) should contact him.
Guests: Brett Smiley introduced himself as a candidate for mayor of Providence. He said he looks forward to our annual meeting and talking with each of us in the future.
We discussed problems occurring on the listserv. John Bazik administers the list. Anneliese is against too many rules. Discussion of the pros and cons of blocking users, requiring registration. John contacted source of problem, but he did not respond. Dean suggested that we set up a subcommittee to continue this discussion. No action was taken.
Snow Brigade. Chris reported some issues with an 8th Street property, but otherwise the program has run smoothly.
Photo contest. Joan Retsinas says that she will contact the committee regarding next steps.
The Hope Street Spring Fair is May 31. HSMA would like us to be more involved. Sheila suggests shredder. If you’re interested, contact Dean who will put you in touch with HSMA president.
Yard sale. If we want to go back to the model of walking neighborhood with map, we need to decide two newsletters in advance. Pros and cons of this idea were discussed.
Dean reported that we have nothing brewing at the moment other than the above. If people have ideas about spring events they should come forward. We might revive the Easter egg hunt. Dean will check in with Anthony about the status of eggs, etc. Michelle mentioned that we might consider having more events for adults without kids.
Newsletter: Kerry suggested that the February delivery might be changed. The weather this year has been bad for deliverers. This would require moving the annual meeting as well. No action was taken.
Other: Sheila Perlow mentioned the fire that closed Jerry’s Citgo. Its manager, Peter, has been a faithful attendee at our annual meetings. It was generally agreed that some notice should be taken by the board, possibly with a card and or mention at our annual meeting. It was also suggested that this would be an appropriate story for our newsletter.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:35
Thomas Schmeling, Secretary.