July 2009 WNA minutes


Minutes of July 13, 2009

President Adam Turner called the meeting to order at 7:02 pm.

Guest Speakers:

The Central West District Representative, Rolando Gutierrez, #4404, presented information regarding the significant change the Austin Police Department has undergone, in changing from districts to bureaus in an effort to downsize upper management. However this change has doubled the workload of the upper management. The Wooten Neighborhood boundaries are within the North Bureau, Baker 3 section. Officer Gutierrez advised residents to lock their doors even when home, especially doors leading from the garage to inside your house; turn on alarm systems even when home, remove all valuables from your cars. Items that are easily pawned are CDs, books, and phone chargers. He is aware of the speeders on Kromer, and of the trash thrown into the street by residents on the block as a means of solving “traffic calming” by themselves. Contact information for Rolando Gutierrez is 974-5998, and/or www.cityofsustin.org/police.

Cory McCallum, builder for Henry Gifford, out-of-state owner of the properties at 8610 and 8612 Bowling Green Dr, came to request a neighborhood plan amendment, to change the zoning from SF-3 to multifamily. Only the interior of the buildings would be remodeled to change them from duplexes to triplexes. Suggestions and questions from WNA were: obtaining a variance instead of a neighborhood plan change; multi-family also would include 4 units if the plan was changed; the property at 8612 is already adjacent to multi-family housing; exterior of the property also needs to be repaired. Adam Turner made a motion to table the discussion until the September meeting and asked the builder to come back with more information regarding the plans. Victor Engel seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

General Meeting:

Michael Tuohy made a motion to approve the minutes of the May 11, 2009 WNA meeting as written. Laura Travis seconded the motion. The minutes were unanimously approved.

Treasurer’s Report: Janie Riley reported a balance of $1,728.78 as of June 30, 2009. Two deposits were made for advertisements in the newsletter. One withdrawal was made for $121.00 for the printing of the newsletter. Two more payments are expected for ads, which will show that the newsletter pays for itself.

Chair/Liaison Summaries:

Community Relations –­ Marilyn Rogers.

Sustainable Neighborhoods meeting scheduled for July 15 at the Village Christian Apartments on Rockwood.

Look out for neighbors, especially the elderly and disabled during these hot days. If someone’s health is in danger call 911 and ask for EMS.

Volunteers are needed to help clean up Zilker Park on July 18 and 25 from 9:00 am ­ noon. Volunteers can sign up to have a chance to win a pair of Austin City Limits Music Festival 3-day passes. See Marilyn to sign up.

Finance –­ Janie Riley ­ (See Treasurer’s Report)

Business/Community Development –­ Sarah Rheams. No report.

Community Improvement –­ Larry Soucier. Larry is working with businesses regarding improvement to landscaping.

Technology ­– Victor Engel. Victor is seeking a replacement for this committee chairmanship. People who did Mueller Community web page and who would be willing to present their design to us contacted him. Adam has also contacted some people who may be interested. Imron also mentioned that his housemate has web design skills and will get his contact number to Adam.

School Liaison – ­Steve Rogers volunteered to be the new School Liaison Committee Chair.

Crime and Code Enforcement –­ Steve Rogers.

o      Steve stated that the WNA wants the Police Academy to be funded this year. He suggested that we contact the City Council for additional patrol officers who are needed. From information shared at the Commanders Forum, 216 police officers are eligible to retire. Janie Riley got no response from anyone on the City Council re funding of the Academy. Hugh recommended that this request should be phoned in to the City Council members, because they get so many emails per day. Michael Tuohy motioned that the constituents of the Wooten Neighborhood Association strongly endorse that the City Council and Mayor’s Office act expeditiously to make funding of the Police Academy their highest priority. LaVerne Stauffer seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. A letter will be sent to all Council Members and the Mayor as well as other neighborhood associations. Other neighborhood associations will be encouraged to support this endeavor.

o      The next Commanders Forum is September 15, 2009.  WNA appeared to be the most represented NA at the last Commanders Forum.


–       Danny and Laura Langfield had a baby boy, Zachary, on May 16.

–       Dale Ritzen has been interacting with John Gillum regarding lack of safety at the pedestrian crossing at Burnet and Steck.

Nomination Committee: Adam Turner expressed interest in serving a second year as President. Marilyn Rogers, Carolyn Spock, and Janie Riley cannot retain their same positions for the next fiscal year, October 1, 2009 ­ September 30, 2010. A nomination committee of non-officers is needed to present a slate of officers at the September 14 meeting.

Wooten Park Update: Adam reported that a schedule of projects would be announced after the July 21 meeting with Michelle Smith. Phase I will be to construct a playscape on Dale Dr.

Boo Fest 2009: Adam will inquire about having the Boo Fest in Wooten Park, which will require permits and fees. The asphalt parking lot last year was a very hot location. A sign-up sheet was made available to persons interested. The NA made approximately $300 on last year’s event.

Newsletter: Adam recognized Betsy and Marilyn for work on the first WNA newsletter distributed in June. Distributors are still needed for the Burnet and Anderson area. It was suggested to leave copies of the newsletter at the new library on Steck. Adam solicited help for the newsletter by passing around a sign-up sheet, and thanked the people who did help on the last newsletter.

New Business:

Larry Soucier would like to see a dog park constructed in our area. He thought land was available for such a project behind the Good Shepherd Church on Putnam.

Steve Rogers reviewed the boundaries and a little of the history of the WNA for the new people in attendance.

A motion was made by Betsy Thaggard to adjourn the meeting, and seconded by Michael Tuohy. The business meeting was adjourned at 8:30 pm.

Next meeting is scheduled for September 14, 2009 at 7:00 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Marilyn Rogers

WNA Secretary

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