RBCA Meeting Minutes for Wednesday, July 11, 2001
Chair: Mary Whitfield
In Attendance: Jorgen Bader, Patricia Barber, Julie Bittner, Michael Bittner, Matt Bowman, Eileen Farley, Barb Holya, Terri Kimball, Beth Meshke, Donna Pacanovsky
Visiting: Lynn, a neighbor; Darcy Nothnagle of Jim McDermott’s office
The minutes from June were approved.
Lynn, a neighbor within the community, presented a traffic issue. Cars coming from Lake City Way are turning on to 20th Ave NE, then turn on to NE 62nd St and finally 15th Ave NE on their way to the University or University District. Lynn is exploring options of either blocking traffic entering 20th Ave NE from NE 65th St, or putting in chicanes on 20th. The board stated that first SeaTran and the Fire Department must approve, and after that the local neighbors must sign on to either option. Matt suggested asking for accident information for that immediate area. Terri mentioned another neighbor in the area who succeeded in making a street one way and although there was neighborhood support it was and still is a very contentious solution. Jorgen suggested that she write a letter to John Layzer who conducted a University Area Transportation Study to ask if he would study this particular area. After Lynn has shown a draft to RBCA, the board would write a cover letter supporting the effort.
A letter from Jeanne Hale to the City Council with regard to video signs was discussed. There is currently a moratorium on such signs but this is due to end in October. There is a DCLU hearing July 12th that will discuss regulating these signs. It was decided that Beth will send an RBCA email stating our support of the city council’s opposition (Council Bill 113692) to these signs entirely.
Darcy Nothnagle of Jim McDermott’s office introduced herself. She described herself as a liaison to neighborhood community groups. The services that the 7th Congressional District office can provide include: case work, issues involving federal agencies such as Medicare/Medicaid, problems with a phone company, research for school projects, tickets and tour information for the White House. The district also has internships in D.C. for undergraduate or graduate students. The phone number for the office is (206) 553-7170, fax (206) 553-7175. Her email is email@example.com
Eileen discussed a Section 8 housing unit (for disabled and low income people) that is located on public land by the Ronald McDonald House. Provail, the local cerebral palsy organization, does not want to be the caretaker of this unit anymore and has offered the lease to Ronald McDonald House and Children’s. Both CHMC and the Ronald McDonald House have declined, because they do not want to displace the current residents. Darcy from Jim McDermott’s office stated that she had received a call from the Tenant’s Union just today about this issue. It was decided to write a joint letter with Hawthorne Hills and Laurelhurst neighborhood associations in support of the Tenant’s Union position to continue these units as Section 8 housing. Eileen will call Jeanne Hale. Darcy stated that she also would like a copy of the letter.
[Addendum: Eileen Farley attended another Provail Tenant meeting on Wednesday. It turns out Provail owns the property, which is very unusual. One of their board members, Ron Knox, attended and said the board has decided it will not move tenants who do not want to be "relocated". It was not clear if this commitment extends beyond the 2004 endo of the Section 8 agreement which Provail has. The Provail staff also said that they have been unable to locate anyone who qualifies for the wheelchair accessible, rent subsidized apartment in the complex which has been empty for a couple of months. They said tell anyone who is interested to contact Provail, 3670 Stone Way North, Seattle 98103-8004, main line 363-7303. ]
The discussion turned to the upcoming community meeting, Wednesday, September 5th, 6:45 p.m., here at Ravenna Eckstein Community Center, hosted by six neighborhood associations including RBCA. The other community associations are North Windemere, Hawthorne Hills, View Ridge, Wedgwood, and Laurelhurst. This meeting pertains to the upcoming mayoral election and Greg Nichols, Paul Schell and Mark Sidran have all met the criteria and agreed to attend. KOMO’s Emily Langley will be moderating. The criteria from the League of Women voters will be used to determine eligibility to participate in the forum, although all candidates will have the opportunity to leave materials for people to pick up. The board discussed how best to reach the RBCA community with news of this event. Patricia Barber volunteered to make a list of labels for the approximately 7000 homes. A one and one-half side notice was suggested, and may replace the fall newsletter. Beth will talk to Jody. Barb Holya and Patricia Barber will coordinate with regard to the labels. Eileen will get an invitation flyer with a letterhead that incorporates the six neighborhood associations. In addition, talk of a mailing generated interest in increasing the fees for becoming a member of RBCA. A vote was taken and passed (with one abstention) to increase the fee to $15.00 a year, $10.00 for those 62 and over and/or with a limited income.
An update from the latest CUCAC (City University Community Association Committee) meeting was presented very briefly by Michael Bittner. Michael was made the official representative at the July 10th CUCAC meeting. Bill Clark is now the alternate. Michael stated that the University is considering additional lighting at the softball fields and other athletic fields. Mary commented that many of the lights at the athletic facilities are left on all night, including the stadium lights, and wondered why this was necessary. Michael also noted that Sound Transit’s plans in the University area tend to focus on cars as the main form of transportation, as opposed to buses, trains or other alternatives.
Jorgen Bader discussed the University’s lease lid. The University has 400,000 to 500,000 sq. feet in the University District that they can lease, and yet they want to raise the lease lid because they want to lease more from private owners. The downside of the University leasing more property in the University District is that they are only open during business hours and do not want residential housing in a building that they lease, thus limiting mixed use. Michael will support the University District council’s view on this at upcoming CUCAC meetings.
The North End Neighborhood Projects List was brought up. Matt Bowman’s project was funded (#1088). Jorgen commented that he will write a letter to John Layzer stating that University Village should do some improvements in the surrounding neighborhood as mitigation for their planned large parking garage.
Jorgen also brought up the 2001 Opportunity Fund. The allocation of these monies needs to made through an open city wide competitive process, using the criteria of Ordinance 120024 and Resolution 30185. Instead it appears that of the $4 million dollars available, $3 million has already been set aside for certain projects that, while certainly deserving, did not go through the competitive process. Jeanne Hale has written a letter expressing her dissatisfaction with the process, as has the Seattle Community Council Federation. Jorgen and Mary will work together to write a letter to the Pro Parks Levy Oversight Committee and the chair will sign.
The August 8 board meeting will have a focus geared toward the recent review of the RBCA bylaws. The subcommittee (Terri, Eileen, Jody and Jorgen) will report their suggestions at that time.
Matt Bowman will be the chairperson for August.