SNA President D. Weinberg commences meeting at 7:06 p.m.
Attending: Dean Weinberg, Jesse Polhemus, Harriet Hemphill, Anthony Arrigo, Grant Dulgarian, Daniel MacLellan, Britt Page, Brad Pelletier, Shelia Perlow, Thomas Schmeling, Jennifer Trayner.
Absent: Howie Gladstone, Claude Goldman, Kerry Kohring, Mary-Ann Rossoni, Peter Sanby-Thomas
- Guest Neighbors: SNA residents Jeff and Mary Claire (no last names given) introduce their circulated neighborhood petition regarding a loud kitchen vent at Highland Court. Jeff and Mary Claire have lived in Summit for two years. According Mary Claire, investors from Massachusetts have recently bought Highland Court at 101 Highland Avenue. New investors are changing name to “Highlands on the East Side” and marketing the property as an upscale assisted living facility. According to the petition, Highland Court has a very loud kitchen vent that runs from 7a.m. to 7 p.m. affecting people on Preston Way and adjacent streets. The petition, signed by 29 people, states that the noise is impacting quality of life and calls on Highland Court to take action to abate the noise. Mary Claire stated that Pat Orral, director of assisted living, now has the petition. Mary Clair has also written a letter to Councilman Kevin Jackson, to which he has not responded.
- B. Pelletier suggests to send a certified letter listing grievances, and of everything that has been done and collected by residents to the new owners and wait for a response.
- D. Weinberg suggests sending the petition out on the SNA listserv looking for other residents in the effected areas.
- Meeting Minutes: Minutes from last meeting unanimously approved
- Treasurer’s Report: H. Hemphill discusses treasurer’s report. D. Weinberg comments on general items of concern regarding budget: lack of renewing membership dues and not getting new membership contributions, difficulty signing up new members during Music Festival or Farmer’s Markets, and that the newsletter budget is over-budget because of two printings so far this year vs. one at this time last year. A. Arrigo suggests that SNA look into providing some “value” for SNA membership other than just supporting SNA: possibly discounts at local businesses, for example. H. Hemphill says will discuss this shortly when reviewing membership committee activities. J. Polhemus moves to approve Treasury Report. Treasurer’s report unanimously approved by board.
- N. Smithfield Telephone Pole: D. Weinberg reports that Councilman Kevin Jackson did not respond to SNA request for moving the telephone pole on N. Smithfield Ave. to allow for two-way access from N. Main to Rt. 95, and that SNA has been trying to get Councilman Jackson to respond for two years with no luck. SNA funds earmarked for that project have now been rolled into the Narragansett Bay Commission project, and NBC will now oversee moving the pole. Two way street will now be part of the overall N Main Street Project.
- Membership Committee: H. Hemphill is now chair of the membership committee. Postcards will be in on Aug 1, and membership database is up to date. Membership Committee is going to discuss how to get more people involved at next committee meeting. Postcards will be going out to acknowledge membership renewals or new members starting in August.
- Lippitt Park Benches: T. Schmeling met with Bob MacMahon, director of the Parks Department, regarding different options for benches in Lippitt Park. T. Schmeling passed around a printout with a range of possibilities for benches. D. Weinberg suggested community volunteer day to fix existing benches that are broken. Next step is to assess the park’s current layout in order to decide how many and which locations for new benches. Discussion ensued among the board about which type of bench wood (cheap) vs. recycled plastic (expensive) would be best for the park. T. Schmeling moved to go forward with purchase of wood “Contour Benches” with the $5000 funds provided by Parents For Parks, SNA, and Miriam Hospital. J. Polhemus moves to allow committee discretion to purchase benches. Board unanimously approved motions.
- Recycling in Lippitt Park: T. Schmeling reports on lack of recycling bins in Lippitt Park. Parks dept does not have a truck that is capable of hauling recycling out of bins, only trash. T. Schmeling does not know of any parks in Providence that have recycling bins. T. Schmeling will meet with Bob MacMahon again and make suggestions for some solutions to lack of budget and ability of city to get recycling out of the park.
- Music Festival: D. Weinberg reports that a Biergarten will be at the festival and run by Trinity Brew House; Trinity and SNA will split proceeds. D. Weinberg states that SNA must have volunteers to check ID’s for Biergarten. D. Weinberg and B. Pelletier discuss liability issues for liquor being served at music festival, particularly with SNA in charge of checking ID’s. B. Pelletier states that a restaurant or bar will already have people trained in checking ID’s and performing other restaurant-related activities. B. Pelletier suggests that Trinity will be covered by their own liability insurance, but SNA needs to have a separate contract with Trinity stating that Trinity will defend SNA in case of alcohol-related lawsuit. Weinberg suggests paying Trinity employees to check ID’s. Weinberg will look into the liability issue further.
- D. Weinberg also states that SNA volunteers are also needed for such things as sitting at SNA table, setting up the park, setting up the stage, and so forth. D. Weinberg passes around a sign-up sheet for board members to volunteer at the Music Festival.
- Music Festival Committee is currently lining up bands.
- Weinberg reports that save the date posters have gone up on Hope Street. Vendor Fee – $35 for booth to be set up at the Festival.
- SNA looking for Gift certificates to give out as part of raffle during festival.
- Yard Sale: B. Page now taking over primary yard sale responsibilities from J. Polhemus. B. Page states that she’s been working on lining up music for the yard sale. J. Polhemus reports that eight spots already for yard sale. A. Arrigo asks how many total spots are available. J. Polhemus says that Warden for the church will have to make final determination, but guesses that there will be at least 25-30.
- Community Garden/Tot Lot: A. Arrigo reports that garden committee met with Bob MacMahon of the Parks Department to discuss plans for the Tot Lot. A. Arrigo stated that MacMahon was very enthusiastic about the redesign of the park and the possibilities for the community garden. Committee and MacMahon determined that the space could accommodate 30, 10’x4’ garden beds. Water access is available at the sidewalk directly adjacent to proposed garden space, so very easy to get water into the garden. A. Arrigo discussed additional features of the new park design including more “tot” friendly playground equipment, new swings, additional playground structures, additional benches and shade for parents, a “track” for tots to ride toys/bikes around the entire play area. A. Arrigo reports that drawings from the city’s landscape architect will be forthcoming at the end of July per MacMahon. D. Weinberg suggests preserving some of the field/grass area for kids to run/people to use.
- Bylaws: B. Pelletier and T. Schmeling are working on changes to the SNA Board’s bylaws and will submit new daft to the board by the next board meeting.
- Advertisements/ Signage on Telephone Poles: A. Arrigo suggests that “We Buy Cars for Cash” and other similar advertisements/signs are proliferating around the area, are unsightly, and are against city ordinance. T. Schmeling refers to City of Providence Ordinance Ch. 3, Sec. 3-3 to 3-5, which prohibits signage on city-owned property. Sec. 3-4 states:
- No person shall post or otherwise affix, nor cause to be posted or affixed, any bill, poster, or notice upon any tree, fence, post, pole or Rhode Island Public Transit Authority Bus Shelters, or other structures within or upon the occupation line of any street or highway; and, no person shall paint, print, mark, or cause to be painted, printed or marked, any sign, notice or advertisement upon any tree, fence, board, post, pole or Rhode Island Public Transit Authority Bus Shelter or other structure within or upon the occupation line of any street or highway. This section shall be enforced by the Providence Police Department. The director of public works or his or her designee is empowered to remove any materials that constitute a violation of this section.
B. Pelletier suggests that the city police department should be notified and enforce the ordinance. J. Polhemus and A. Arrigo will call police Lt. Ryan for Summit area to make a complaint, and call DPW to work with police for enforcement. If those actions fail to stop the proliferation of signs, A. Arrigo will write a letter to present to the Board to insist the city take further action.
- Rhoda Perry: D. Weinberg asks if SNA should do anything to honor Senator Perry for her support of the community, and when the most appropriate event would be for that. B. Pelletier suggests giving citation to Senator Perry from SNA for 20 years of support for community and activities. T. Schmeling moves that we honor Rhoda Perry at the annual meeting at Feb. (Seconded by B. Pelletier). Approved by board.
- Overnight Parking: D. Weinberg reports that parking meetings were very contentious. Mayor refuses to answer questions about the parking plan. D. Weinberg and J. Polhemus state that if your street opts-out, then no-one on the street can get an overnight parking pass for guests. D. Weinberg states that revenues from new parking allowances project to be .06% of city budget.
- Newsletter: D. Weinberg states that newsletter committee looking for articles as soon as possible.
- Snow Shoveling Program: B. Page and T. Schmeling met to discuss snow shoveling. Drafted blurb to put in newsletter. B. Page will email the past volunteers to see if they will assist again. T. Schmeling read draft of blurb. Board commented on draft and suggested changes. J. Polhemus suggested setting up separate email address for snow shoveling.
- New Business: G. Dulgarian states that RIPTA originally would not disclose ridership data for their route to Miriam hospital. Data is now available and ridership is very low. Grant moves to write a letter on behalf of SNA to address potential changes in service to Miriam Hospital. Move is not seconded and not carried due to lack of information, or specific actions for SNA to take. Dulgarian also asks board members to consider bond issue for street repair and discuss at the next meeting whether SNA should take a position.
- Howie Gladstone: S. Perlow submitted into the record that board member Howie Gladstone is having surgery and that the SNA board wishes Howie a speedy recovery.
D. Weinberg adjourns meeting at 9:13 p.m.
Anthony F. Arrigo