RNA Board Meeting Minutes – December 2017

Board members present: Jim Lohmeyer, Jeff Bentley, Peggy Wise, John Melton, Sue Ekstam, Mike Brothers, Jeff Barber.

Others present: Officer Zach Schlup, Nancy Evans, Paden Chambers, Kevin and Nancy Williams from the Delaware Neighborhood Association board.

Approval of November Minutes – Jeff Bentley motioned to approve, Peggy Wise seconded. The minutes were approved.

Treasurer’s report – Three new household memberships joined, and we received a $20 donation, for a total increase of $80. Balance now stands at $2022.12.

PAR officer report – Officer Schlup gave an update. Package theft is happening all over the city. Good idea to have it delivered to your office or workplace if possible. Vehicle theft is also happening quite a bit right now. Large trucks such as a Ford F250 seem to be especially easy to get into and steal. This is Officer Schlup’s last meeting. Officer Laughlin will be the new PAR officer after Jan. 1.

Board members/officers for 2018 – Sue Ekstam provided an update from the nominating committee. The proposed slate would be: Laurel Bryant, chair; Jim Lohmeyer, vice chair; Jeff Barber, former chair; Peggy Wise, treasurer; Mike Brothers, secretary; Nancy Evans, Neighborhood Advisory Council Liaison; John Melton, neighborhood watchman; and members at large Jeff Bentley, Paden Chambers, Nancy Dornan.

Voting members will be asked to approve at the general meeting. We will open it up to other nominations from the neighborhood on Facebook. However, we believe that since much of the work of 2017 is carrying over to 2018 it would benefit the neighborhood to have a great deal of continuity on the board.

Neighborhood Plan review update – Jeff Bentley provided an update from the steering committee. There was a public meeting on Dec. 6 for all the property and business owners on Cherry Street. It went very well, with very good dialog among all concerned. There was another steering committee meeting last week. Jeff said the process still appears to be somewhat murky. It’s been a good and productive process and if nothing else we have raised issues in a very public manner, regardless of the eventual outcome in 2018. We need to continue to finish the process and get some revisions to the UCD. The city is still negotiating with their top-choice consultant but no one has been selected yet. The large parcel at Kickapoo and Cherry has been listed for sale for $1.3 million, much more than any recent sale on Cherry Street. Jim and Jeff Barber had a conversation with the owners last summer in order to give them some insight into the RNA’s current thinking about our vision for future development in the neighborhood. They showed the property owner several examples of quality, successful, low-density neighborhood projects from elsewhere in the country.

CU pipeline upgrade project update – Phase 1 will begin Jan. 8. There will be minimal service outages. Neighbors should be prepared for tree removals all along the south side of Madison between Delaware and Fremont. Fewer trees on Fremont will need to be taken out. Neighborwoods (City program) is working more closely with CU to replace trees, however, there aren’t many options on Madison because of the size of the street and new sidewalk. Nancy is in contact with neighbors in the area.

New Business

City Survey – It’s now live. Postcards are being mailed out at this time. The comments will be used to write the final version of the neighborhood plan, which will in turn inform revisions to the UCD. Those who want paper versions can get one. January 15 is the deadline. City will share the results when it’s done.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:20 p.m.

About Mike Brothers

Mike is a Pickwick Person; husband to Maureen and dad to Vivian and Dorothy. He has lived in the neighborhood since 2011 and has lived in Springfield for over 20 years. He the PR director for Drury University. He was previously a communications specialist with the City of Springfield and the Springfield-Greene County Health Dept, and before that a features writer and music columnist with the News-Leader.
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