WOOTEN NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION
Minutes of November 10, 2008
President Adam Turner called the meeting to order at 7:05 pm.
The minutes of the September 8, 2008 WNA meeting were unanimously approved.
Treasurer’s Report: Janie Riley reported that WNA has $1,737.23.
Dr. Antonio Medina, Principal of Burnet Middle School, introduced his staff who accompanied him to the meeting: Sheila Harper, President of the PTA; Howie Howie, Dropout Intervention Specialist; and Dorothy Salas, Parent Support Coordinator. Dr. Medina reported that Burnet MS is the most diverse campus in the city with 980 students. Scores on the statewide achievement test, TAKS, are rated as “Acceptable.” Various bond improvements are being made to the school. Concerns from WNA were that some students acted disrespectful of properties on Renton when walking to and from school by vandalizing recycling and garbage containers, and asked Dr. Medina is the school personnel would escort students down Renton. Dr. Medina responded that he is only responsible for the students while on school property and that if residents have complaints they should contact the school office at 414-3225, or the AISD Police at 414-1703. Volunteer opportunities available at the school are mentoring, tutorials, and after school Boys and Girls Club. Steve Rogers informed the audience of the Communities in Schools (CIS) program as a way to volunteer in schools. Steve has been active in the program for 10 years. Burnet Middle School houses a CIS office. Another member, Laurie Coker is a mentor at Burnet. WNA was invited to participate in the campus’ Beautification Day of November 22.
Steve Zettner from Sustainable Neighborhoods was the second guest speaker. Sustainable Neighborhoods is a group working with the Vertical Mixed Use (VMU) team with the City of Austin to address open space issues not addressed by the current VMU ordinance. Open space is defined as a functional walking area so people will use cars less. This open space should be pedestrian friendly with wide sidewalks, attractive landscaping, and be functional. Functions include walking a dog, outdoor dining, and gathering places. Ideally, developments should have 20% open space. Steve Zettner held up pictures contrasting “good” and “bad” open spaces. Examples of good open space areas are Amy’s Ice Cream, the Triangle, Second Street, and Town Lake. Sustainable Neighborhoods asked Wooten NA for a letter of support for pursuing open space with VMU development. An example of the letter of support was partially read. Opie Gonzalez made a motion to write a letter of support, seconded by Michael Tuohy. The motion passed by majority. The officers of WNA will draft the letter. The next meeting of Sustainable Neighborhoods is November 12, from 6:30 8:00 pm, at the Village Christian Apartments on Rockwood, in the Recreation Room.
Announcements from newly elected WNA President, Adam Turner:
Adam explained that the Board is a conduit of information of things related to our community and stressed the importance of working together.
Congratulations to Sarah Reams and Laura Langfield on the success of the Octoberbash. The event drew approximately 60 people and Wooten NA profited in access of $300.
Property is being subdivided at 2103 W. Anderson Lane, where the North Village library is located. This sub-division may be a way to not be subject to required. The Case #C8-2008-008.01 is scheduled to be heard by the Planning Commission on November 25, 2008. The Planning Commission meets at the City Hall Council Chambers, 301 W. 2nd, Contact David Wahlgren for more information, 974-6455.
Selected committee chairs to date are:
· Community Relations – Marilyn Rogers (WNA Secretary is Chair with subcommittee of proposed newsletter)
· Finance – Janie Riley (WNA Treasurer with WNA officers serving as members)
· Business/Community Development – Sarah Reams
· Community Improvement – Larry Soucier
· Technology – Victor Engel
A request was made for volunteers for additional subcommittees and non-subcommittee rolls. Organization is the key to success for these voluntary positions.
Transportation (subcommittee). Beverly Kimbrough cannot commit time to this subcommittee for 08-09.
Neighborhood/School Liaison (subcommittee). Responsible for contact with Burnet MS, Wooten Elem, and Redeemer with the hope of increasing dialog with the PTA at these schools.
Distribution Coordinator (non-subcommittee)
Newsletter Writer/Layout (non-subcommittee)
Michelle Smith from Texas Action for Healthy Kids is applying for a grant to make the playscape at Wooten Park more of a community area, i.e., dog park, community gardens. Ron Bullock, Principal of Wooten Elementary, and WNA have been asked to write letters of support for this grant. If the grant money is awarded, volunteers from the community will be needed for some of the proposed projects. A vote on writing a letter of support is being deferred until the January WNA meeting.
Lisa and David Golden, 1414 Wooten Dr., are concerned with the speed with which people drive down Wooten Dr. They asked that the issue of traffic calming be revisited.
The meeting adjourned at 8:29 pm.
Next meeting is scheduled for January 12, 2009 at 7:00 pm.