BOARD OF DIRECTORS MINUTES – Meeting of November 3, 2014

PRESENT: Matt Ruben, President;  Janet Finegar, Secretary; Steve Richman, Treasurer; Jennifer Baker; Larry Freedman; Monika Kreidie; Dolores Lyons; Sharon Richman; Anne Waginger; Logan Welde.  

ABSENT:  Don Phillips, Vice-President; Michael Coyne; Sasi Judd; Katrina Mansfield; Chris Somers.

The meeting was called to order by the President at 7:07 p.m.

Motion: By Dolores Lyons, seconded Monika Kreidie :“To approve the minutes of the October Board meeting.”  Passed 6-0-2

President’s Report: Matt Ruben.

  1. It is time to send out the annual fund appeal; ideally it will go out about 10 days before Thanksgiving. There is a decision to be made about how many appeals should be sent with a physical letter and brochure and how many should be sent electronically. Katrina will update the electronic appeal; we have NLNA brochures left over from the museum exhibit that can be used with a fundraising letter for hard copy mailings.
  2. The bylaws change passed at the general meeting, so we are now required only to have quarterly general membership meetings. Matt suggests that our next formal meeting be in early 2015 and that we focus on the November meet-and-greet and December Operation Santa wrapping party for information distribution in the near future.
  3. The Kearny Friends paper drive was quite successful and delivered 600 reams of paper to the school.

New Business

Logan reported that we have purchased 500 “circular-free” stickers that can be posted on one’s door: combined with a form from the city where one registers one’s address with L&I, the stickers reduce junk fliering at the door by up to 90% and can lead to fines for businesses that flier anyway. Logan suggested a few plans for distributing the stickers and connecting it to informing neighbors about the NLNA’s services and soliciting donations.

Treasurer’s Report: Steve Richman: written report attached and reviewed.

Motion: By Katrina Mansfield, seconded by Monika Kriedie. “To approve the Treasurer’s report as submitted.”  Passed 9-0-0

 

Liberty Lands Committee Report: Janet Finegar:

  • The fall festival was only slightly attended because of the wind and cold and Eagles game. Still, people had a nice time and we ended up making some money for the NLNA, so it’s all good. We will, however, need to return most if not all of the PTSSD grant of support, since we did not have many expenses. (The moonbounces were cancelled due to high winds.)
  • Matt got an email of complaint from someone whose car was towed for the Fall Festival. Much of the information in her complaint was wrong, but nonetheless, the need to tow cars on 3rd for park activities is one that comes up a lot. We may want to discuss some kind of permanent signage warning people that overnight parking on weekends isn’t always legal.
  • November 15 is the Love Your Park workday. We’ll plant crocuses and a new tree, spread some mulch, and (we hope) replace the valve boxes throughout the park. And other stuff. We hope to have a bunch of volunteers from a local fraternity to help out.
  • The Weeder’s Club has been stalwartly working every Saturday from 9-11 and will continue until November 15th.
  • We won an honorable mention of sorts “Garden of Distinction for Combination – Community” in the PHS City Gardens contest.
  • Thanks to Lara, the first of the “dog poop stations” (funded by the PTSSD) has been installed and is being used.
  • As of today (Monday) the Waste Management “extra” trash pickup is done for the season. We will start it up again in March.
  • If anyone knows of an indoor spot where the lawn mower could be stored for the winter, we really need one. It needs to have wide garage-style doors.
  • Krampuslauf is December 13, and we would like to ask PTSSD for support for it.

 

Zoning Committee Report: Larry Freedman; written report attached and reviewed.

Motion: By Monika Kriedie, seconded by Katrina Mansfield. “To support the recommendation of the Zoning Committee on the matter of 117-20 Spring Garden St., i.e.: ‘Thank you for your presentation. Before support for this project is issued, we will need more information on dedicated space for trash storage, the roof deck plans, and verification of the proper distance and location of emergency exits. Please go to our design committee to present this information. A letter of support will be issued upon receipt by the design committee of this information, including a full set of plans as presented to the ZBA, with finish materials called out for all 4 sides.’”  Passed: 9-0-0

Motion: By Janet Finegar, seconded by Monika Kriedie. “To support the recommendation of the Zoning Committee on the matter of 117 W. Laurel St., i.e.: ‘We vote to support the project as presented. A letter of support will be issued after receipt of a set of drawings as presented to the ZBA, including elevations showing material selections for all 4 sides and the plan for hiding utility meters.’”  Passed: 9-0-0

Motion: By Monika Kriedie, seconded by Katrina Mansfield. “To support the recommendation of the Zoning Committee on the matter of 929 N. Hancock St., i.e.: ‘Thank you for your presentation. We can’t support a plan that includes a two-car garage at this location.’”  Passed: 9-0-0

Motion: By Steve Richman, seconded by Sharon Richman. “To support the recommendation of the Zoning Committee on the matter of 701-03 N. 2nd St., i.e.: ‘A letter of support will be issued after agreeing to the following in writing and submitting plans: Hours for the establishment will be M-Th 11 a.m. – 11 p.m., Fr-Sat 11 a.m.- 12 a.m., Sun 12 p.m.-10 p.m. A trash room within the building will house non-metal containers with bag liners that will be brought to the curb on Fairmount by the commercial pick up drivers during the hours of 7 a.m. – 11 a.m. At no point will trash be left on the sidewalk.’”  Passed: 9-0-0

Old Business

The meeting was adjourned by acclaim at 8:30 p.m.

Addenda:

TREASURER’S REPORT – NOV 2014

2013-14 Budget Update

  • For the year ended September 30, General Fund and Liberty Lands income totaled almost $134,000 and expenses totaled nearly $108,000. The positive balance of $26,000 was further bolstered with prior year funds of $12,000, bringing total year net income to nearly $38,000.
  • This balance includes:
    • About $5,800 in the General Fund carried into 2014-15 to pay for obligations incurred in the prior year but not paid.
    • $16,000 from rent for the mailbox store. This amount was un-programmed by the board in 2013-14 and placed into the reserve account.
    • About $16,000 was carried over to 2014-15 for Project Clean Streets.

Highlights of 2013-14 Budget

  • Revenue was about $10,000 above budgeted levels, largely due to higher than anticipated corporate contributions for Clean Streets (+$13,500), and from higher levels of individual donations (+$2,700) and rental income (+$2,000). This was offset by lower than anticipated revenue from fundraising (-$6,000), grants (-$1,000) and user fees (-$900).
  • Expenses were $14,000 less than budgeted levels. This was due to deferred capital improvements (-$1,500), lower spending for fundraising (-$4,000) and administration (-$4,500) and delayed billing and payment for taxes and legal expenses (-$5,000).  Lower spending in these areas was offset by higher spending for communications (+$4,100) and equipment (+$800).
  • Improvements were made to the community center, including painting and new curtains.
  • Receipt of more than $21,000 in corporate and other contributions enabled us to continue Clean Streets and support our spring and fall fests. Sufficient funds were carried over to continue Clean Streets for at least another year.
  • A large grant, totaling more than $41,000 was received from PTSSD, which will fund improvements to Liberty Lands and community environmental programs. PTSSD also gave us $3,500 for another community improvement initiative named for Amber Long.  An additional $5,000 grant was received from the water department for a demonstration program.  Finally, we received $3,500 from the Philadelphia History Museum for a history of Northern Liberties exhibit that ran at the museum.
  • We again made a large deposit to the reserve fund for the third consecutive year.  Our reserve fund now totals more than $90,000, providing resources to strengthen our financial operations, invest in our future and meet unexpected expenses.

October 2014 Results

  • It is far too early in the fiscal year to notice any trends, but certain results are noteworthy.  Rental income is running slightly ahead of expectations, both for the community center and Liberty Lands (+$600); revenue from environmental initiatives is also ahead (+$300).  In the latter case it is due to contributions received for our new recycling bins that just became available.  Unfortunately, despite a lot of hard work by several board members and others from the community, net income from the Fall Music Fest was about $1,300 less than anticipated.  Finally, on a better note, we received notice that PTSSD will give us $1,000 to support our other fall fest, which was held just yesterday.

 

ZONING COMMITTEE MEETING – Monday 10/27/14

Members present: Larry Freedman (chair), Charlie Abdo, Kenny Grono, Kyle Koenig, Melissa Magness, Joe Mikuliak, Michael Simons, Anthony Bottenfield, Tim McDonald, Jonathan Sher, Ira Upin    Members absent: Beth Emig, Sharon Richman

117-20 Spring Garden – CMX2 – Zhen Jin: A return visit with a redesign to the project we approved.

Previous Motion (Joe) – 2nd (Jon): Vote 6-0  Thank you for your presentation. We offer conditional support for this project; however, please return to the Zoning Committee with plans that include: – roof decks, parapets, pilot houses and solar panels on the roof shown as they will be built; – storm water strategy; – interior layout; and,- façade drawings with dimensions and materials called out.

The changes made to the project were as follows: Parking will be underground and the number of spaces increased from 8 to 22. The number of residential units increased from 24 to 30, and the commercial is shown as 4 spaces, instead of the previous 1. The total commercial is approx.. 6000 sf. The heights are the same as the previously approved project, but the total footprint has increased to include the area previously used as a drive way. A roof deck for the 5th floor tenants has been added to the higher roof. The lower roof roof deck from the previous proposal was maintained.

Motion: (Joe) 2nd (Kenny) vote: 8-0  Thank you for your presentation. Before support for this project is issued, we will need more information on dedicated space for trash storage, the roof deck plans, and verification of the proper distance and location of emergency exits. Please go to our design committee to present this information. A letter of support will be issued upon receipt by the design committee of this information, including a full set of plans as presented to the ZBA, with finish materials called out for all 4 sides.

117 W. Laurel – I1 – Kevin O’Neil: A proposal for a single family dwelling in an industrial zone. This 3 bdrm 2 ½ bath home is 35’ tall, has a roof deck with a 5’ setback and a finished basement. Discussion: Parking was discussed. Near neighbors said they preferred the plan as drawn with no garage, even though this lot is currently used by neighbors for parking.

Motion: (Melissa) 2nd (Joe) vote: 8-0 We vote to support the project as presented. A letter of support will be issued after receipt of a set of drawings as presented to the ZBA, including elevations showing material selections for all 4 sides and the plan for hiding utility meters.

929 N. Hancock: A proposal for a single family dwelling with a 2 car garage.  Expected refusal is for the garage. The home is 4 bedrooms, 3 full baths and 2 half baths. The curb cut for the garage is 16’7”.

Motion: (Joe) 2nd (Tim). Vote 6-2-1  Thank you for your presentation. We can’t support a plan that includes a garage at this location.

143 W Wildey – CMX3 – Ron Patterson: A proposal for a parking garage, which now requires a variance.

August meeting notes: This parcel (231’10” x 122’7”) includes the lot currently in use by the Boone School residents. The lot is intended to be the parking garage for the residents of the Piazza (349 units) and the Boone School (44 units).  The 4-tier open garage would provide 304 spaces for 393 units [349 + 44 = 393]. There will be two pedestrian circulations – one that is only stairs and one that is stairs next to the elevator (49’ high).  The entrance is located on Wildey Street close to the Boone School.  There is some potential for additional angle-parking along Germantown Avenue (approximately 50 additional spots) for commercial customers.  There was discussion about the design and entrance location of the garage.  There was no discussion to accommodate parking for the events. We would ask them to meet with the UDC.

October meeting notes:  The entrance has been moved closer to the former Germantown Ave as requested at the August meeting. The discussion of this project was tabled, to allow for a discussion of the appeal, plans for event parking and events, to be included in the recommendations of the ZC.

701-03 N. 2nd St – CMX2.5 – Brett Feldman: A proposal for a restaurant in mixed use building. Proposal is for a wood-fired pizzeria, Spuntino.

Motion (Group) vote: 10-0  A letter of support will be issued after agreeing to the following, in writing and submitting plans: Hours for the establishment will be M-Th 11am – 11pm, Fr-Sat 11am- 12am, Sun 12pm-10pm. Trash room within the building will house non-metal containers with bag liners, that will be brought to the curb on Fairmount by the commercial pick up drivers during the hours of 7am – 11am. At no point will trash be left on the sidewalk.