Friday, September 9, 2022

WECAN board meeting minutes September 1, 2022

 WECAN General Membership Meeting Minutes September 1, 2022 on the porch at 21 Jefferson Drive @ 6:30 pm.

Board Members present: Byron Ballard, Joe Fioccola, Rebecca Lance, Sylvia Organ, Pattiy Torno, and Suzanne Willis. 

Board Members not present: Stephanie El-Hajj, Mike Kenton, Rachel Larson, Rich Peterson, Carrie Pettler and Brittany Wager.

Also present: Lisa Adams, Zac Altheimer, Katie and Justin Bledsoe, Emily Fenster, Melanie Ham and Michael, Brian Lander, John and Janet Long, Patrick Pearson, Lynn Player, Ranse, and 5 children 

CALL TO ORDER: After refreshments Rebecca called the meeting to order at 7:02 pm suggesting that social meetings should be quarterly.

NEIGHBORHOOD MATCHING GRANTS: Pattiy reviewed that for the first round of grants WECAN was awarded $2500 which was matched with over 300 volunteer hours (at $25/hr.) That $5,000 value went toward renewing half of the community garden and some planting at Owens Bell Park. The city offered a second round and WECAN applied and was awarded $5,000 (to be matched with volunteer hours and $1500 cash from RADBA) for four projects: $4,000 for the Sign Garden, $4,000 for the Clingman Streetscape, $1,000 for the Edible Triangle and $1,000 for the Urban Trail and possible seating. A request was made to post pictures of these on the FaceBook page and a question about sub-groups there or an album to post pictures to that anyone can access. Many volunteers will be needed for WECAN’s match and information about opportunities will be distributed by the listserve or email list and on FaceBook. Anyone can sign up at WECANNEWS.blogspot.com and Pattiy will add a tab there for NMG (Neighborhood Matching Grants.) There was a question about a pin post on the FaceBook group. Pattiy would also like a shorter url. Lynn observed that there are about 25 people who have expressed interest in the Community garden contact group. Pattiy noted that the city’s goal is to make neighborhoods work together and they have been successful.  Pattiy thanked Lynn for a third grant of over $3,000 which was awarded through Bountiful Cities and an anonymous donor and which will go toward renewing and expanding the other half of the community garden.

WELCOME WAGON: Ranse along with Lisa and Rachel need help in knowing who our new neighbors are.

COMMUNITY GARDEN: Lynn described several achievements besides the harvest of potatoes, peppers, squash and garlic available at the meeting.

  • Last March the Sunrise garden was refenced and ten new beds were built. The purpose was about food which is awesome but also about building relationships in the community
  • The garden achieved Pollinator status with native plants and water
  • ART was happy to supplement our water supply. Thanks to Barry and John there.
  • Compost Bins were built by Brian and Swann and primed for painting. There is a list of allowables posted and Ranse will also post the list on FaceBook. The three bins are Sun for fresh kitchen scraps and eggshells, the Moon bin to ‘bake’ and the Earth bin with ready to use compost which should have some ready for fall planting time.
  • Sunset garden will need a lot of volunteer help to clear out, level, place ground cloth, stakes, fencing and ten new beds.
  • Asheville Buncombe Food Policy Council proposed a food pantry for neighbors to share. It should be for the neighborhood and not passersby. We could use it to hold tools, seeds, produce directions or instructions or however we want. There are potential construction costs associated with the kit but can be installed with volunteers. Rebecca recalled the discussion from the last meeting that the choice was with the community garden group. Joe also met with Kristina Israel about permissions to install and expand. Her meeting with the city legal is delayed by vacations.
  • The effort now is to be consistent, continuing to meet on Thursdays at 6, maintaining what we have and working on signage and agreements/norms (aka rules) about which beds are community efforts and which are for individuals.
HALLOWEEN GATHERING: Rebecca recalled the successes of the Haunted Trail which will be returning this year. There is an annual budget. Work times are TBA. If you are interested in helping out please contact Brittany at 35 Jefferson. (brittanywager@gmail.com)

ANNUAL MEETING PLANNING: Joe announced the annual meeting on December 1, 2022 will be the 25th anniversary of the first WECAN meeting. Cake will be appropriate. Suggestions for a location include The Patton or maybe The Hilliard. The annual meeting is where new board members are elected.

WECAN NEWSLETTER: Joe reported that each year WECAN produces a newsletter. Some topics he suggested include: City Agreements (Pattiy), Community Garden (Lynn), Halloween (Rebecca), HSCD update (Carrie), Neighbor Profile (Byron), and Worm Knightmares (Charlie).

WECAN ORGANIZATION: Rebecca recalled that WECAN needs a meeting facilitator, treasurer, communications co-chair, minutes taker and to talk to us if you can help.

ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Joe announced upcoming events of interest:
            Thursday September 8     10-12   River Summit at New Belgium
            Saturday  September 10   10:30   W Avl Garden Stroll 587 Haywood Rd
            Friday      September 16   4-5:30  French Broad Greenway West Opens  
            Friday      September 16   8:30     Neighborhood Leader RoundTable
            Tuesday  September 20    9 am    Adopt A Highway Litter pick up

DUKE SUBSTATION UPDATE:
Pattiy spoke with Jason Walls and the substation is still in the works except that GIS technology has been changing. The exterior design of the building will remain as planned but the interior is changing. The redesign of the interior should be completed this year with construction moved to 2024-2025.  

TREASURER’S REPORT:  Pattiy reported a balance of $3989.89

ADJOURN: Meeting adjourned at 7:45 p.m.
Next WECAN Board meeting October 6, 2022           
Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola 

 

Thursday, August 11, 2022

WECAN board meeting minutes August, 2022

 WECAN Board Meeting Minutes August 4, 2022 Virtual meeting via Zoom @ 6:30 pm

Board Members present: Byron Ballard, Joe Fioccola, Rebecca Lance, Rachel Larson, Sylvia Organ, Pattiy Torno, and Suzanne Willis.

Board Members not present: Stephanie El-Hajj, Mike Kenton, Rich Peterson, Patrick Pearson, Carrie Pettler, Brittany Wager and Davina Weirich

Also present: Brian Lander, Lynn Player, Lisa and Emily Finster, and Gina Smith from the Asheville- Buncombe Food Policy Council.

CALL TO ORDER: Rebecca called the meeting to order at 6:33 pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Byron moved and Pattiy seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the
June 2 Meeting as distributed and corrected. The motion passed.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Pattiy reported that a check was received from Bountiful Cities on behalf
of an anonymous donor for the community Garden in the amount of $2420. From that $217.71 was used by Lynn for a new rain barrel and hoses. Other uses of that money must be approved by Lynn or Joe. Also, closing out the Neighborhood Matching Grant a payment of $725 was made to Royce’s Tree service for the removal of a Bradford Pear and a Mulberry from Owens-Bell Park. She noted that the $2500 cash received from the city was matched by over 200 volunteer hours and generated a $7500-8,000 benefit to WECAN and was very successful in activating the neighborhood. She also applied for a second Neighborhood Matching Grant for $10,000 ($5,000 cash and 200 volunteer hours.)That grant is for the Sign Garden, WECAN/RADBA Clingman Streetscape, Edible Triangle and Urban Trail/Kudzu Hill. She has been in touch with Transportation Director Ken Putnam who advised her that the NCDOT has agreed to include the city and WECAN in maintenance agreements along Clingman Avenue but it must be approved by City Council at their September 13 meeting.

BLOCK JESSIES:
Attendees introduced themselves.

  • RACHEL reported curbstones being taken up on Roberts Street to West Haywood.
  • LYNN: met new neighbors, a young couple from Alaska at the end of Jefferson.
  • BRIAN: reported that the local Democratic Party is looking for a Precinct Chair to back up Mr.
  • Bacoate. Also Swann has been priming and painting the compost bins at the community garden.
  • JOE reported that he has posted the minutes to all the WECAN meetings from 1997 through 2010 on the
  • WECAN Blogspot.
  • SUZANNE heard that Angel Hadden was moving to Boston.
  • PATTIY heard from JoAnne Skinner that she was going to NY for cancer treatment but was in good spirits. Also, Mr. Bacoate has a new car. His son got him a new silver Jetta station wagon. Also the Skyview Golf Tournament had 159 participants for their 60 th year at the Municipal Golf Course. The African American group also has some national sponsors.
  • REBECCA was happy to ride bikes on the greenway and enjoyed Sugar and Snow Gelato on Riverside Drive.
  • PATTIY noted that the French Broad River West Greenway was now open. The completed greenway is paved from Craven Street to Carver Park. The Grand Opening is set for the morning of September 9, 2022. She also announced an ongoing Sunday Jam from 11 to 1 pm roller skating at Curve Studios Parking Lot. (No skateboards please!)

FOOD PANTRY PROPOSAL: Gina Smith explained that for the past two years the A-B Food Policy Council has been working on the Neighborhood Emergency Food Preparedness Project. Mutual aid food sharing structures have been built at East End Valley Street, Shiloh Community Garden and Deaverview Apartments and have been very successful. She met with Lynn and looked at possible placement at the WECAN Community Garden.They observed that Community Gardens look like a good place for these structures. She shared pictures of ones that have been built so far. They create and provide kits and material to be assembled by the neighborhood volunteers.

  • Q: Are they bear-proof? A: There have been no problems yet with bears. Most food items are canned or dry and they can be locked at night.
  • Q: It looks like the flat roof could be used as part of a water catchment system. Do you need permits for a permanent structure? A: They are moveable but might need permission.
  • Q: Is there a central place to keep information such as a garden calendar, to-do lists sharing neighborhood contacts and information? A. It can be used for whatever the community needs. Their fiscal agent Bountiful Cities can make signs available.
  • Q: There is a concern about having a food source for travelers through the neighborhood. Could it be tailored to WECAN’s needs? A: Not sure of the community’s food needs but may be needed in the future after HSCD is built. It is up to the community to decide how it works best. ABFC is funded through December.
  • Q: Is there a deadline? No deadline just contact Gina at COORDINATOR@ABFOODPOLICY.ORG.


DISCUSSION: Maybe it could begin as an information center first and later morph into a food pantry if there is a need and desire. HSCD stocks it? Are there ways to know what is inside or in stock? EEVSNA uses their newsletter or email and the units have windows so you can see what’s inside. What is the decision making process for WECAN moving forward? It was suggested to make this an agenda item for the September WECAN Meeting. Joe agreed to contact Kristina Israel about permission to build the structure.

COMMUNITY GARDEN: Lynn got a new rain barrel and we attached a saucer to it and it is working really well. Reach out if you want to help.

BEARS: They have been through WECAN recently one with a collar and another with an ear tag, maybe up to five individuals. Q: Is there a program to fund bear-proof trash cans or trash can enclosures? A: Bear Resistant Cans can be ordered by individual residents.  https://www.ncwildlife.org/Portals/0/Learning/documents/Profiles/Mammals/Bear-Resistant-Trash-Cans.pdf  Residents need to call City Sanitation before buying a can to make sure it is approved, and also after they have it, so that the Sanitation employees can pick the city-issued can.  

WELCOME WAGON: Ranse will come to the September 1 meeting.

HAYWOOD STREET COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES: Delays with funding. Little house will be
used for Admin and staffing. Carrie will update in September.

WECAN ORGANIZATION: Rebecca noted that at the July 4 social at Owens-bell Park she made announcements and wanted to know how we are feeling about the board and meetings in future. It is an important place for discussions and information sharing. Will we ever go back to in-person meetings? NO, they are a barrier to participation. Meetings are appreciated and not a waste of time. They help cement our foundation but maybe fewer meetings? Some are hesitant to change now--so much on our plate. Stay the course. Time is important and challenging, maybe more efficient one hour meetings? Monthly is good for continuity and shorter is also good. Maybe we need two more other social get- togethers besides Halloween and July 4 th? Maybe interface with businesses in WECAN with a restaurant crawl?

FUTURE NEEDS: Meeting facilitator, Treasurer, meeting notices, minutes, maybe early or later Block Jessies.

HOMELESSNESS SURVEY: Joe reported that CAN was working with the city consultants on the Homelessness policy. There is a survey asking for ideas about homelessness, its causes, solutions, and the
survey is totally anonymous. Anyone who has ideas on the subject please take it.:
HTTPS://www.surveymonkey.com/r/s96tkp8

 ADJOURN: Meeting adjourned at 7:51 p.m.

 Next WECAN Board meeting September 1, 2022

Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola 

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Draft WECAN Board meeting minutes June 2022

WECAN Board Meeting Minutes June 2, 2022 Virtual meeting via Zoom at MHO @ 6:30 pm

 Board Members present: Joe Fioccola, Rebecca Lance, Rachel Larson, Sylvia Organ, Rich Peterson, Carrie Pettler and Pattiy Torno

Board Members not present: Byron Ballard, Stephanie El-Hajj, Mike Kenton, Brittany Wager, Davina Weirich and Suzanne Willis. 

Also present: Brian and Swann Lander, Lesa Peterson, Kristina Israel, Neighborhood and Community Engagement Manager; Lucy Crown, COA Transportation; Mike Sule, Asheville on Bikes; Rev.Brian Combs; McKenzie Dillingham and April Nance HSCD Board;

 CALL TO ORDER: Rebecca called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.

 APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Pattiy moved and Rebecca seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the May 5 Meeting as distributed and corrected. The motion passed.

 TREASURER’S REPORT: Pattiy did not update the previous balance of $1717.23

 BLOCK JESSIES: REBECCA brought up the issue of an Air B&B at 24 Jefferson that was renting all 3 units and may have violated the city rules—in order to rent your home for less than 30 days, you must have a ‘homestay’ permit, allowing for the rental of up to two rooms on a short-term basis as long as the owners or caretaker also lives in the house. Some rules have recently been changed by the state. PATTIY updated on Owens-Bell Park that Parks and Rec completed the work of installing timbers to line the path and mulching that looks great. She has a bid from Royce Tree service to remove the Bradford pear and trim one of the mulberries but the maintenance agreement needs to be amended and Suzanna Horton is working on that. She also noted that a new supply of wood chips has arrived at the end of Park Ave today. JOE removed knotweed and trash from the Melk Drive (6 hrs) and from ‘short’ Hilliard (1 hour).  He tries to work on Sunday mornings when there isn’t a lot of traffic or rain. The city has an agreement with the NCDOT and WECAN has an agreement with the city to maintain and clear the site before any planting can begin. PATTIY also observed that the Edible Triangle needs a lot of weeding but the blueberries are doing well. Also that Jessie Coleman celebrated her 84th birthday last weekend.

 CLOSE THE GAP:  Lucy Crown showed a map of the GAP (Greenway/ADA/Pedestrian) Study showing Pedestrian Network Components in the WECAN area. There was some confusion about lines representing sidewalks or proposed sidewalks on West Haywood, Club/Trade and Roberts Street and whether sidewalks were even possible due to steep, hilly and narrow streets. One effort is to make the East Patton Study more functional and to slow down traffic to share the roadbeds. Rachel asked about the Steps to the Hillcrest walkover and ADA efforts there and the utility easement between Club/Trade and West Haywood. Sylvia is also concerned about truck traffic-- not so much delivery trucks but semis that often get stuck. Pattiy will connect Lucy with Sylvia and Brian for a walk through.

 UNPAVED SURFACES INITIATIVES Mike Sule showed a map of several areas for consideration: French Broad River West, Bacoate Branch, Mountainside Park, River Ridge and Azalea Park/Highland Brewing. The goal of Asheville On Bikes is to develop natural surface trails that are either multi-use or bicycle only for mountain biking. Bacoate Branch is a proposed Greenway in WECAN and he showed a section from Merritt Street behind Asheville Middle School down to Lyman Street that due to the costs involved might even precede the actual Greenway. He requested a letter of support confirming it would be a valuable asset and that we approve. He offered to bring maps to our General membership meeting in July. There was a question about connecting to the middle school but it is a security issue. Mike asked if there might be a WECAN resident interested in being the AOB liaison and Rich agreed to do so as he is an AOB member 

HAYWOOD STREET COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES: Carrie introduced McKenzie Dillingham from the HSCD Board who is a general contractor but not the project builder. She explained that HSCD has received nothing in writing yet from Givens. Any issues from WECAN will go to the HSCD Board and they will address them with the management. A question about staffing was explained by Brian. Usually 80-100 units are needed to support full time staff. The Board is straddling multiple responsibilities. They expect to hire a full time Director of Housing. Their revenue equals what is left after the mortgage is paid. They have a staff of 30 at Haywood Street Church that supports their goal of relational management which includes the Mercy League and aspirationally a Director of Frivolity. The other question was about compliance. There are some non-negotiables in complying with the Fair Housing Laws. The board hires people to complete their contract but does not handle day to day activity. The HSCD Board is ultimately responsible—not Givens. It is a stretch for Givens who focuses on elderly housing but since there are no complex Federal fund reporting requirements in this project they agreed to take on the minor compliance issues. They are also looking into mowing the property as soon as they can after no-mow-May (for pollinators.) Sylvia wanted to note that recent construction in WECAN has been traumatic with traffic and pedestrian sidewalks blocked off. The arson fire at the Hilliard construction site also caused much damage to the surrounding parts of the neighborhood. Ground-breaking is still planned for August 2022. It was also suggested that subcontractor parking should be considered and be mindful and good neighbors. Brian also noted that Haywood Street has stopped the steady collective needle distribution at the church. It is still on Wednesdays but not there.

 SUMMER EVENTS:

4th of July party hosted by Suzanne on Rector Street: There was talk of not having a Monday July 4 Party and a regular Board meeting on Thursday July 7 in the same week and of combining both before the fireworks which may even be on Saturday July 2. No action taken until a confirmation of when there will be fireworks.

 ART MEETING: Sylvia, Kristina Lee and Rebecca met and the minutes of that meeting are attached. Kristina addressed the noise issues which were of two kinds: Electric bus chargers and the money vacuum. Grania will try to reschedule a sound level check between 9 and 11 pm when the vacuum happens. Sound barriers may be a consideration for the workstation also chargers such as acoustic blankets which can cost as much as $13,000. Capacity is limited and grants may be applied to cover some costs.

 COMMUNITY GARDEN: Joe reported that Pollinator Certification was received from GreenWorks and a new grant was awarded through Bountiful Cities.

 WELCOME WAGON: Lesa reported that Rachel provided a list of recent home sales and Ranse has made a half a dozen ‘welcome wagon’ deliveries, and he has also created a tracking spreadsheet.

 ADJOURN: Meeting adjourned at 8:02 p.m.            

 Next WECAN Board meeting July TBA, 2022

Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola  



 ART SUBCOMMITTEE MINUTES:  Lee Lance

  1. Noise - chargers: A new CoA noise ordinance went into effect in September '21, and new noise readings were taken at both the charges and at the houses along Park. The noise readings are within the limits allowed per the noise ordinance. Report attached. However, a recommendation was made that fencing and/or landscaping between the ART facility and the houses on Park could be improved.
    NEXT STEP: Kristina to find out what the appropriate path is with CoA to request that a plan be put in place to explore this suggestion

  2. Noise - bus noise at night (9-11PM): The noise from the ART facility is loudest in the evening when most of the buses are returning from routes (~12 or so buses at a time).
    NEXT STEP: Grainne offered to coordinate with ART to come back in that time window to check the noise readings, as documented in an email exchange between Grainne and Barry on 5/20.

  3. Noise - shuttle cars, employees, idling buses: We discussed exploring whether the beep-at-lock could be disabled in the white shuttle cars; general noise from employee stereos/loud trucks and motorcycles; idling buses.
    NEXT STEP: Barry indicated that the staff is continuously reminded about being courteous to neighbors and will continue to ensure this is the case; John is exploring whether the lock beep can be disabled in the shuttle cars.

  4. Speed of buses/Redlights on Hilliard, at intersection of Hilliard/Clingman: Barry indicated that all buses (and shuttle cars) are equipped with Smart Drive, a behavior modification tool that allows staff to review events and provide ongoing coaching to improve driving behavior. Barry indicated that it is very difficult to see pedestrians/cyclists crossing Clingman on Hilliard headed east and urged caution / illumination. He emphasized continued direction to drivers about being cautious at this (and all) intersections.
    NEXT STEP: N/A

    Landscaping/property maintenance: WECAN thanked ART team for consistently taking care of the property, and for the positive interactions with ART employees performing the work.
    NEXT STEP: John will look into why the entire bank along Jefferson is not trimmed.

  5. Community garden water catchment: The fence is CoA property so if WECAN wants to attach water catchment to the fence, that's a CoA question. ART offered to the WECAN community garden a used/empty 330-gallon container used to deliver diesel treatment. MSDS attached.
    NEXT STEP: WECAN to let Barry know if there is interest in one of these containers.

  6. Community Garden Dinner this summer: - ART team invited to join the dinner.
    NEXT STEP: WECAN to let ART know when this is scheduled, possibly provide info for staff break room.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

WECAN Board meeting minutes May 2022

WECAN Board Meeting Minutes May 5, 2022 Virtual meeting via Zoom at MHO @ 6:30 pm

 Board Members present: Byron Ballard, Joe Fioccola, Mike Kenton, Sylvia Organ, Carrie Pettler, Pattiy Torno and Suzanne Willis. 

Board Members not present: Stephanie El-Hajj, Rebecca Lance, Rachel Larson, Rich Peterson, Brittany Wager and Davina Weirich.  

Others present: Teresa Stevenson, Andrew Crosson.

CALL TO ORDER: Sylvia called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.

 APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Byron moved and Pattiy seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the April 7 Meeting as distributed and corrected. The motion passed.

 TREASURER’S REPORT: Pattiy reported The Neighborhood Matching Grant first reimbursement payment was received within two weeks from the City in the amount of $1556.20 and was distributed to all. The current balance is $1717.23

 BLOCK JESSIES: PATTIY saw on WLOS that on Wednesday 3 people were arrested from a rental property at 43 Rector street with a large amount of fentanyl and weapons. She also updated on Owens-Bell Park that Parks and Rec was supposed to move the signs on Wednesday when she did some planting at the dogwood loop but now will begin at 6:30 am on Monday. Staff will also edge the path to the bridge with railroad ties to contain mulch. She asked for approval to remove the volunteer Bradford pear in the sunny cultural garden between the pin oak and the maple we planted for Terry Bellamy. It is non-native and invasive and there was no objection. She offered to have Curve pay for the removal and then heavily mulch until the fall and plant then. JOE completed ivy removal on Thursday.

 HAYWOOD STREET COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES Carrie introduced Teresa Stephens the new property manager for Haywood Street Community Development and Andrew Crosson

asking them to explain what property managers do.  In general: They both have hands-on experience in affordable housing. Givens’ focus has been on senior affordable housing and section 8 since the 1970’s with experience with HUD and tax credit properties and regulations. They accept vouchers. She noted that they are not yet under a formal agreement but expect to sign one very soon. Their approach is social work and compassion. ‘People are People.’ Their goal is to try to keep people successfully housed. Specifically from day-to-day managers will receive rents, applications, qualifications, keep maintenance up to par, contract with vendors, landscaping, trash removal and general administration plus building relationships with residents. They make sure that regulations are being followed by residents and staff. Sometimes the job entails mediating.

Q: How much involvement is there in the tenants lives? They are adults and share as much or as little as they choose. Q:How much experience do you have with children? Givens experience with Federal funding says they can’t exclude and have had some under age 18 living with grandparents.

Q:Is Givens local? Givens manages the Givens Estate, Highland Farms since 2012, Great Laurels since 2007, 262 apartments at Givens Gerber Park since 2016, 2017 and 2018. Q: Whose responsibility is being financially sound? HSCD has a fiduciary commitment to the Haywood Street Board. Management has a hands-on approach to budgeting, and spending with a long term goal of sustainability. They will not defer needs and will build reserve funds. Q What is the staff ratio for a 45 unit building? It depends on the budget. Normally it would employ a part time manager and a part time maintenance person. These may be supplemented with staff from Givens such as social worker or community nursing through Givens Life Ministries outreach. Q: Can you explain how qualifications are maintained?  Year-to-year residents must qualify they must show their finances 120 days before their anniversary. Q: What if a 30% renter makes too much money? Vouchers are reviewed annually by the Housing Authority. The only time residents may or shall leave (not definite on the wording) is if their income exceeds 120% of AMI. Otherwise the designation may float within the building. There will be a transfer policy and the neighborhood preference is to maintain in the building rather that frequent short term turnovers. Carrie will explain to the HSCD board to try to create consistency, cohesiveness and relationships.

Teresa asked: Q: MHO has 3 properties in WECAN what have you learned from them?   In WECAN Merrit Park, Prospect Terrace and Clingman Lofts are both condos and not rentals but on Depot Street which is outside WECAN they do have rentals. Residents of the Patton Apartments have not participated in WECAN and the Hilliard apartments have just begun to fill up, so WECAN does not really have any learning to share here. Givens produces a Community Handbook which contains hard legal information such as the lease and house rules but also has soft information in Move-In Packets such as fire plans, water cut-off locations and can include a letter from WECAN on how to participate, introduction to the neighborhood, nearest playground, bus stop, neighborhood history. Andrew added they will also have traditional monthly meetings that WECAN can attend not just address on the front end.

Q:What is the best outcome? Could the Community space be open to neighborhood use? The board vision included neighborhood events.

            Andrew explained the relationship between Givens and Haywood Street Church. They are both United Methodist Church organizations affiliated with Central UMC. They have a strong bond with Givens Life Ministries outreach to design programs to meet neighborhood needs such as the Welcome Table and Respite Center. They partner with Pisgah Legal in alternatives to evictions. There have only been 4 actual evictions since Gerber Park began. Housing is the foundation for health.

Q: What does WECAN ask from Homeowners? Nothing. There is a Community Garden, FaceBook page, Halloween haunted trail, wecannews@blogspot.com has 25 years worth of annual newsletters and meeting minutes. WECAN is very walk-able and Sylvia offered to give tours on request.  Byron added that the neighborhood has a history with Haywood Street which was connected physically before the I-240 ramp cut us off and the founders of Haywood Street were from the neighborhood and included her great-great grandfather.

 EVENTS PLANNING: a proposal for chalk Art at Owens-Bell Park on Saturday was nixed for predicted rain. An email thread proposed a July 4 celebration at Owens-Bell Park with a 6 pm cook out and maybe chalk art. A garden event proposal for May 15 led to the question of how decisions are made. A thread email suggested that a process was starting to gel. It is not formal or finalized but people are engaging and it is still evolving. Joe will start a thread. He also reported that Lyn has applied for another grant through Bountiful Cities and for Pollinator Certification through GreenWorks. MELK: Suzanne contacted Eric at GreenWorks and he looped in back to Joe.     

 BRIDGE NOISE: Pattiy noted it is loud but she appreciates that the bridge is bring fixed just maybe not so much at 7 am on Saturdays.

 COALITION of ASHEVILLE NEIGHBORHOODS: Byron reported that volunteers are requested to help out. See their website asheville-can.org. Their next meeting is at 5 pm on May 26 on Zoom (link on website.) There is a position statement on the rethinking Boards and Commissions which she will post on the Face Book page. Jones School Playground could receive a large donation but for squabbling bout continued maintenance. Video interviews with city council and mayoral candidates are also available on the website. Pattiy added Black Wall Street AVL is hosting a Mayoral / City Council candidates forum on Monday from 6-8:30 @ 8 River Arts Place.

ADJOURN: Meeting adjourned at 7:58 p.m.            

 Next WECAN Board meeting June 2, 2022 @ 6:30 pm

Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola       

 

Saturday, April 30, 2022

WECAN Board meeting minutes APRIL 2022

 

WECAN Board Meeting Minutes April 7, 2022 meeting masked at MHO @ 6:30 pm

 Board Members present: Joe Fioccola, Rebecca Lance, Sylvia Organ, Carrie Pettler, Rachel Larson, and  Pattiy Torno.

Board Members not present: Byron Ballard, Stephanie El-Hajj, Mike Kenton, Rich Peterson, Brittany Wager and Davina Weirich and Suzanne Willis. 

 CALL TO ORDER: Rebecca called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:  Rebecca moved and Sylvia seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the March 3 Meeting as distributed and corrected. The motion passed.

 TREASURER’S REPORT: Pattiy reported the balance is $1648.83.The Neighborhood Matching Grant first quarter report was completed. About $1200 of the $2500 grant has been spent on the Community Garden so far. After discussion it was settled that WECAN shall request one reimbursement from the city and disburse that to the ones who made the purchases.

 BLOCK JESSIES: RACHEL reported a Park Square cat lost a leg to cancer. REBECCA noted seeing a bear out and about and that their bear-box was working. They also got sanitation stickers instructing residents on Jefferson that and trash and recycle containers left for collection on the street must be 5 feet apart. PATTIY heard that another house on Jefferson may come on the market this year after their son graduates from High School.

 HAYWOOD STREET COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES Carrie Pettler forwarded a request for permission to rescue the yuccas and tulips on the HSCF site.

The March 21 HSCD meeting is focusing mostly on financial matters. Due Diligence period ended on March 24 and ownership of the land will be official on April 24. She corrected a statement she made last month that groundbreaking will begin in August of 2022 BUT residents are expected to will move in by August 2023. The HSCD website will be revised to have a more fundraising focus. Givens is working on a Letter of Intent-their first for a property they do not own and also working on obtaining a license as a broker. They also need to change their Articles of Incorporation to change ‘elderly’ to ‘all.’ Their Board will vote to approve the change on April 22. A Management Agreement is expected by May. Until then Policies and Document are developing about Property Management and the exact wording and intent of a Management Agreement (whether ‘on behalf of’ rather than ‘for.’)

     She noted several aspects that WECAN could have some input.

1-The Management Plan between HSCD and Givens is open to WECAN input( Teresa will be invited to the May WECAN meeting.  

2-The Operations Document will include the Scoring Matrix, Transition of Management and Occupancy Maximums.

 3-Lease Addendums are like Home Owner Association Rules. 

4- Still in conversation about an audit process. Since no Federal money is involved there is no set audit process.  The City may request an Audit as may the other funders. There will be an internal systems audit but because of confidential information may need a third party Compliance Audit to confirm affordability, behavior and the scoring Matrix for WECAN that may not be required by the funders. WECAN requested a process to address issues that may arise. Sylvia requested copies of sample leases (Rachel suggested asking MHO) for research in what can be included in them, what you can and are allowed to ask. It was also suggested that WECAN receive a copy of HSCD’s annual financial statement. Regarding the small yellow house the current resident requested an extended lease. Future use will be storage and office space. Regarding Naming Brian Combs will return from sabbatical this month and is expected to shift naming towards more fund raising opportunities. There is enough money already to begin construction but fund raising continues. Carrie reaffirmed that any qualified person should be able to live here and added that without the $1.3m left to raise the design of the apartments may be at risk along with the activities provided on site.  She included that anyone can be on the Fundraising Committee—not just Board Members. Pattiy will follow up with some leads she may have. There is a John Boyle article in the Citizen Times that says it may be time for YIMBYISM.

 GARDEN GRANTS: Phase one is almost complete. Demo, site prep, fencing, compost bins and 9 new beds were built and filled. An issue with ground cloth covering with chip mulch was settled. There was extended discussion about organization and potential next steps. Joe wants there to be clear rules for participants. There should be more accessible communication besides Face Book such as signage and labeling. He wants to take the opportunity we have for community events such as ribbon cutting, dedication, group photos, garden bed lottery, harvest celebrations, social events and community building not just ‘this is just my garden space’ and ignoring everyone else. Others have a more informal or ‘loosey-goosey’ attitude about rules so anyone can do whatever they like. Some feel that participation should come first and we can build on that and maybe that’s as good as we can expect. Pattiy feels we have already achieved a lot in what we have done so far and ripples are being felt throughout the neighborhood and also that it is a year long process. Posting rules and a map might help. Lynn has been very good at keeping things moving. She has already let some people pick out beds and make signs. Sylvia is interested in there being a meeting space. Rebecca wants to keep the traditional meeting time (Thursdays at 6 pm.)  Other parts of the grant are for Owen Bell Park and Pattiy met with Suzanna Horton and the City will fix the George Inge metal sculptural sign and switch the Park Rules and Photo signs. They are considering lining the sinuous path to the bridge with railroad ties (to hold a mulched path covering) and adding steps down from Rector Street

 ART Subcommittee will meet in the next month.

 ADJOURN: Meeting adjourned at 7:52 p.m.            

 Next WECAN Board meeting May 5, 2022 @ 6:30 pm

Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola       
 

Thursday, March 31, 2022

WECAN Board meeting minutes March 2022

 

WECAN Board Meeting Minutes March 3, 2022 meeting on Zoom @ 6:30 pm

 Board Members present: Byron Ballard, Joe Fioccola, Rebecca Lance, Sylvia Organ, Carrie Pettler, Pattiy Torno and Suzanne Willis. 

Board Members not present: Stephanie El-Hajj, Mike Kenton, Rachel Larson, Rich Peterson, Brittany Wager and Davina Weirich.

 CALL TO ORDER: Rebecca called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:  Pattiy moved and Byron seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the February 3 Meeting as distributed and corrected. The motion passed.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Pattiy received and paid the receipts for the Haunted Trail decorations at $103.65. The balance is $1648.83. She also submitted the annual 990-N e-postcard report to the IRS. She also accepted a very useful binder that holds all the Treasurer’s papers from Mr. Bacoate.

A recording of the meeting began at 6:31 pm 

BLOCK JESSIES: JP is moving to Charlotte. SUZANNE and daughter Zellie met with JoAnne and her daughter Robin who is staying with her.  JoAnne has pneumonia last week but is back and would love to see visitors. In short they are healthy and in good spirits. JOE asked when we can get back to in-person meetings. Several are okay with it. The consensus was to try to meet outside behind the Community Garden on April 7. Rebecca will check with MHO for availability of their community room as a rain location. PATTIY noted several break-ins at the Glass Center and Odyssey Clays. Only cash was taken and they left people feeling very unsettled. No updates on Pat Crisp or Pete Bassett. JOE heard that Sandi and Gerald were planning on moving away. Sylvia heard that their house was going on the market tomorrow. 

HAYWOOD STREET COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES Carrie Pettler had five things to update.  1-Rebecca invited Theresa Stevens from the Givens Estates to our next meeting regarding property management of HSCD. Carrie encouraged people to visit Givens as they are now the official property manager.

               2-Pattiy suggested some more names for the project. Researching Mrs. Foster was turning up blank and in an effort to honor the heart of the neighborhood she suggested the names of someone we know and knew and love: Jessie Nell(Mama Nell) Coleman and Jessie Mae Jones. They represent the heart of the neighborhood. These two matriarchs of the neighborhood she suggested should be honored by naming the building after Mama Nell and the Community Room after Jessie Mae who worked many years preparing meals for people.

               3- The primary siding color was finalized: “Deep Ocean”

               4-Brian Combs was taking a well deserved sabbatical until Easter (April 17.)

               5- On February 22 the majority of City Council voted to approve the purchase of the land and the conditional zoning. The project is now shovel-ready. Carrie laid out the probable timeline: Breaking ground by August 2022. Construction estimated time to complete is one year (August 2023). Then it is planned to train staff for an additional year (August 2024) before admitting tenants.

DISCUSSION: Rebecca asked if the oak trees in front could not be saved, when they might go and if they could be used to make benches. Carrie noted that funding was in place sufficient to begin construction but another $1million is also needed and if anyone wants to help or get involved with the fund raising committee reach out to her.

MELK: Carrie also expressed a concern about the Melk Property which is in between her house and the Haywood Street Project. It is NCDOT property and the City has an agreement with them and WECAN has a maintenance agreement with the City. It is very challenging and there is a lot of debris and needles. She is looking for a purpose for that area to be expressed. Maybe WECAN and HSCD can define what the purpose should be. What might be planted there and can benefit the neighborhood but not be abused. The current goal is to cut back brush to increase visibility and deter camping and other lawlessness.

GARDEN GRANTS: Pattiy reported that the agreement is signed and is going through the process of getting all the other signatures and should be ready by next week. She explained that we had to do a pivot since we only have signed agreements for the Community Garden, Owens-Bell Park and the Melk Property it was holding up the process waiting for the other agreements to come through. So, our focus will be on those three. The Community Garden is the strongest community building vehicle in WECAN and will be the biggest part of the budget, but it is flexible and can also be used for the Haunted Trail next October. This spring we focus on the Community Garden and next fall on planting in Owens-Bell Park. She noted that John repaired the WECAN sign. She has spoken to Ken Putnam and McCrae Coated and they both agree that our agreements should and eventually will happen, but no estimate on when.

 COMMUNITY GARDEN WORKDAY:

The first workdays were set for Friday March 4 and Saturday March 5. Joe, Lynn, Zack, Swann, Brian and Mitch all expressed interest. Lynn and Joe have prepared the site by removing the old rotted wood fence and privets and Joe picked up T-posts and ground cloth and they organized the tasks into 3 teams: Fence Team, Ground Team and Wood cleaning Team. Lyn created a face book event staring at 9 on Friday and 10 on Saturday. We have a white board with tasks to check off and it will be a lot of fun.

  SUBCOMMITTEES

 ART AND SPRING MEETING: Rebecca explained the commitment to meet two times a year to keep communication open and build rapport and not just complaints. She is expecting the next meeting in April or May and asked if there was any interest in attending. Sylvia wants to attend. Rebecca met Ben Woody, Development Director for the City who happens to be in charge of enforcing the new Noise Ordinance. He told her that decibel readings were taken and recommended action. He will also be at the ART meeting.

WELCOME WAGON: Lesa wants to continue but needs someone else to look at realtor records for new arrivals. Rachel might be interested but Ranse offered to check with his landlord who already does monthly checks.  A Go-Local card was suggested as a gift instead of a small plant. The cost is $20 or 10 for $180. They do have a shelf life so a bulk purchase may not work.

 COUNCIL COMMITTEES: Joe explained the City’s move to consolidate her 30-odd advisory boards into just four aligned with the City’s Living Asheville Comprehensive Plan. There are several public input sessions set in the next few weeks: March 3 from 5-7 (Too late! missed that one) Monday March 7 (12:30-2:30), Wednesday March 9 (3-7) and Friday March 11 (9-11.) For more information see restructurepilot@ publicinput.com/C1401.

 COALITION OF ASHEVILLE NEIGHBORHOODS: Byron reported that the City is working on changes to an Open Space Amendment and a work session is set for Tuesday March 8 from 2-4 pm. Joe explained that it had to do with development rules for projects over one acre and had to do with  affordable housing, tree preservation fee in lieu and other ways of avoiding it.

  OTHER BUSINESS:

Rebecca expressed her conflicted feelings and disappointment about the ongoing criticism of the board by a few on FB, and not wanting that to go unanswered. She appreciates all of us and our neighbors.

 ADJOURN: Meeting adjourned at 8:02 p.m.            

 Next WECAN Board meeting April 7, 2022 @ 6:30 pm tentatively set as in-person at the field behind the Community Garden

Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola       

Email pattiytorno@gmail.com for a link to the recording of the zoom meeting. 

WECAN board meeting minutes September 1, 2022

  WECAN General Membership Meeting Minutes September 1, 2022  on the porch at 21 Jefferson Drive @ 6:30 pm. Board Members present: Byron Bal...