March 2018 General Meeting Minutes
Date: March 7th, 2018
Location: Sts. Peter and Paul Parish Hall
Minutes taken by: Secretary Taylor Bodine
The meeting was called to order at 7:09 P.M. by President Wade Weistreich
Officers and Directors in Attendance: Beth Bennett, Scott Plackemeier, Wade Weistreich, Billy Tomber, Christopher Schwarz, Venessa Kobrin, Taylor Bodine
Officers and Directors Absent: Neil Putz, Luann Denten. Bill Clendenin, Stephen Shuman
Aldermen Present: Alderman Dan Guenther and Alderman Jack Coatar
Committeeman Present: None
Other Officials: None
Metropolitan Community Church: Pastor Katie Hotze-Wilton
The Metropolitan Community Church is hosting an Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, March 24th at Pontiac Park. There will be fun prizes, giveaways, and a visit from the Easter Bunny. This event is free and everyone is welcome. In June, they will also be hosting a Family Day Carnival.
Soulard Farmers Market: Ted Greenfield
The Farmers Market is looking to expand their appeal to vendors by being open on Sundays. At their busiest, they are only filling 80% of their spots. Vendors are moving on, retiring, etc. and the market needs the business. The SRG Members were asked to raise their hands if they opposed to the Farmers Market being open on Sundays: no one opposed.
A question was asked about whether or not the master plan to renovate is still happening. They do not currently have the funds for that projects, but it is still a “plan”.
Board and General Meeting Minutes
Lisa Marlinghaus requested to amend the Treasury Report from the February General Meeting to read the following:
“How does the SRG determine how money is spent?” Christopher Schwarz answered the question by clarifying that the operating expenses for the SRG are roughly $85,000. This includes funds for events, administration, and projects within the neighborhood as requested by Committees and approved by the Board. This process takes place at the June budgeting meeting. Christopher recommended that members who have ideas or desires as to how SRG money is spent in the neighborhood, approach or join committees as those are the people actually executing projects.”
Julie D. moved to approve the February Meeting minutes. Jim Rick seconded. The minutes were approved.
To date, we have made over $62,000 and we we have spent about $52,000. We are ahead just short of $10,000. We are in the middle of moving our account from Carrollton to AB Credit Union.
Police Report (Sherdon Douglas)
No report given. Officer Douglas is on leave.
Suggestion Box Results (Wade Weistreich)
There have been a total of three suggestions. One was left in the suggestion box, and two were submitted online. They have been addressed - thank you for submitting suggestions!
Lisa Marlinghaus was nominated for the position of Secretary, and has accepted. Christopher Schwarz was nominated for the position of Treasurer, and has accepted. LeRoy Fitzwater was nominated for the position of Director, and has accepted.
Nominations will be accepted through Monday, April 2nd. Veronica Putz will create the ballots. Elections will be held at the April General Membership meeting, April 4th.
Moonbase Market/Earthbound (Wade Weistreich)
Members of the Board met with the owners of the Moonbase Market and Earthbound. They do plan on staying open 7 days a week, as presented during the February General Meeting. If you have questions or concerns please talk to us. At this time, the SRG has not been asked for a formal letter of support for them.
MGI – post Mardi Gras Meeting
The post Mardi Gras meeting was last Thursday. A few of the board members attended and do not have a report. The events went smoothly.
Julie Price mentioned concern over the quality of events that led up to Mardi Gras. She attended the Wine Tasting event and shared that there were barely any Soulard residents, not a lot of people dressed up and there were safety concerns with no water being offered while alcoholic beverages were being served and multiple people fell because of the slippery floors. She felt as if no money was put into the event, and that the $50 she spent on her ticket was not worth it. Billy Tomber addressed that MGI has already discussed this issue and that she was not the only one that felt that way. The loss of the Cruzan Rum sponsorship created a struggle for funding this year. They are going to rebrand everything for next year and improve the event.
SRG Committee Reports
Safety (Scott Plackemeier/Sergio Sevillano)
The Safety Committee will work on creating better communication with Officer Douglas.
The next Safety meeting will be held on March 26th. During the last SSBD meeting, it was brought up that there have been a large amount of guns stolen from cars within the neighborhood. That is problematic because it is not only stolen property, but also stolen guns that are likely to be used for other crimes. They will be following up on this issue.
The Safety Walk date is still TBD. It will be on a seperate night instead of in between the SRG meeting and the social as it has been in the past. If you would like to participate, you will simply walk the neighborhood and point out any potential safety issues that you see.
A concerned resident of 13th & Sidney Street asked what was being done in regards to the shooting/car chase that occurred this past week on 13th Street. He had anticipated to talk Officer Douglas. Alderman Jack Coatar stated that he was not aware of this situation, and would speak to the resident about this after the meeting.
Alderman Coatar also noted that there has been an $8,000 increase in the Officers’ salaries and there are classes being taken to further train Soulard’s Officers. Unfortunately, our retention rate is not great due to higher salaries in the counties and because the counties want experienced officers from the city. He stated that we are still short officers, per protocol. He said that he will be getting us a full report on this incident and that there should be an Officer at every one of the SRG General meetings.
Beautification (Richard Eaton)
If you are interested in joining, we will be having a Beautification brunch at 1PM this coming Sunday at 1842 S. 9th street. There are quite a few areas of Beautification that volunteers can join!
We have volunteers from Greek Life at SLU coming to help with Pontiac Park. We also have another group coming to help with the Soulard Station on the 16th at 1PM. Pontiac park will be a special interest of ours this summer!
Residential Promotion (Wade Westreich)
The Garden Tour and Bastille Day are coming up!
Communications (Venessa Kobrin)
The calendar is getting updated
The Survey will be distributed in two formats. There will be an online version found on Soulard.Org, via email, Facebook and Nextdoor. There will also be hard copies. We are asking that as many residents as possible fill this out. There will be incentives offered for completion. We need the data in order to make changes, and this is a great way to clearly express your opinions.
The next issue of the Renaissance will be the Garden Tour. Deadline will be Mid-May. The last issue was full of content from neighbors and it was great! If you have articles, please send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please send movie suggestions for Movies in the Park to Venessa@soulard.org. So far, Harry Potter has been nominated.
Parlour Tour (Julie Price)
The Parlor Tour was sold out this year and gross sales were $18,000. The sponsorships this year allowed us to have less expenses. Thank you to everyone that helped make this happen!
There will be a reception in a few months that will explain what it takes to have your house on the tour. This is not an obligation, feel free to come if you are interested. More details TBA.
PRT/Code and Zoning (Jay Gibbs)
Jay attended the walkthrough of Moonbase Market with some of the board. It was unanimous that the signs on the building were too big. They will be bringing a revised design to the committee.
There were questions raised about the retail space being built on 1000 Russell having both siding and brick. Other concerns were raised about the PRT/Code and Zoning committee being brought up to date in a timely manner. Jay noted that everything he receives will be brought to the committee.
The concern with the container for construction on the corner of Menard and Shenandoah blocking the stop sign will be addressed. Wade and Alderman Jack Coatar are working on either getting it moved or getting a temporary stop sign on the other side of the container.
Another question was asked in regards to the Hilton’s garage. Jay noted that we do not require garages to look like a historic building, and that rules/codes for garages are very minimal. The garage that the Hilton has built does not violate any of our current rules or codes.
Jay noted that he has not heard from Orlando in a while when questions were asked about his street facing garage plans.
Fundraising (Chris Schwarz)
Trivia night was a success. Over 150 people attended and we made a little over $3,400. Expenses should be fairly minimal. Thank you to the volunteers and the sponsors!!
There is a meeting coming up to discuss the Concert Series and other matters on Monday the 12th at 2358 South 12th street. There will be drinks and finger foods.
The 2018 Concert Series Dates are:
May 12th, June 10th, July 21st, August 11th, September 8th.
The September 8th concert may be changing. If you have any band suggestions or connections, please let us know!
Volunteer shirts will be distributed to volunteers who have completed three shifts. They will be royal blue and heather grey baseball t shirts. Up to one shift from last year can be used for this year. Talk to your committee head if you have questions.
We will be cheering on the GO! Marathon on April 8th this year with a cheer station on the 2nd mile marker. There will be a sign up on the blaster, Facebook event made, and will mention this again during the April meeting. More information TBA but we anticipate that we will need volunteers there around 7AM.
Membership (Julie Price)
We have our very first special event in a few years. We will be bowling this Saturday at Saratoga Lanes in Maplewood. There is a sign up sheet in the back for the shuttle from Molly’s. The first round will leave around 6:45 PM and return for the second round around 7:30PM. When everyone is ready to return the shuttle will take us back. There will be bowling, darts, pool and a cash bar. There is a Facebook event made if you need more details.
The Membership Drive is coming up. It will be at Lynch Street Tavern from 6-9PM in place of the May General Membership meeting on May 2nd. This is all inclusive as long as your dues are paid. There will be door prizes, koozies and celebrations!
If you are on the Parlor or Garden tour this year, you receive a free membership for a year!
We have openings for socials in August, November and December.
Pat and Anita Walker are hosting the social this evening! They are located at 2300 South 13th Street.
The SRG has 287 current members and our goal is to gain 50 more.
Julie is also part of the Central Patrol Business Association. The SRG gave $500 towards the goal to give police officers 100 dollar bonuses. This year they will be having a “Night at the Ballpark” on April 25th at 6PM. Tickets are $30 and the police officers will be honored before the game, with the Officer of the Year throwing the first pitch. Please contact Julie for more questions and thank you to the SRG for your support.
Holiday Decorating (Venessa Kobrin)
Legion Report (Bill Wirtel)
The Legions has 9 new members! Mardi Gras was great and they even sold out of their biscuits and gravy.
The first two fish fries have sold out. The next one will be a shrimp boil and there are only two more left!
The fence around the Legion is needing to be replaced. They are looking for 13 feet of cast iron loop spear. If anyone has any connections for those supplies please let Bill know. One of the planters on the 11th Street side was turned over in the alley. There was a white vehicle spotted on a camera, but no license place.
Heavy rain caused roof damage and several interior tiles needed to be replaced. Donations are welcomed to help with that cost and the cost of new flooring that is needed.
The brick building in the back will finally be completed in the back!
Soulard Business Association (Tom Gullickson)
Mardi Gras Inc. (Gary Toribio, Billy Tomber, Michael Pastore)
Motion to adjourn was made by Venessa Kobrin and seconded Margie Koors. The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 PM