SRCC EC Meeting Minutes — May 2019

Minutes
SRCC EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING  (www.srccatx.org)
Monday, May 20, 2019     6:30 PM
Opal Divine’s Austin Grill (Best Western Hotel)
2200 S IH 35 Frontage Rd., AUSTIN, TEXAS

AGENDA

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CALL TO ORDER/APPROVAL OF MINUTES

1. 6:30  Meeting procedures, etiquette, welcome & introductions of new members

Presenter throughout: Eric Cassady, SRCC President, unless otherwise noted.

2. 6:35  Membership & voting announcements. Reminder that SRCC current dues status is required to participate in SRCC business and actions such as voting and making motions. Reminder of changes to bylaws regarding voting members of EC.

3. 6:40   Approve minutes from the April 15, 2019 Executive Committee Meeting

Reminder: schedule for Executive meetings: 3rd Monday of the month; 6:30pm – 8:30pm, Location Opal Divine’s Austin Grill.

Proposed meeting dates through rest of term: June 17, Sept. 16, Oct. 21, Jan. 20, Feb. 17, April 20

Motion:  Carol Martin/Dan Fredine To approve the EC minutes from the April 15th, 2019 EC meeting.  10/0/0 PASSED

4. 6:45  Report from the President: Volunteer opportunities, yard signs, ad-hoc Outreach Committee.

Presenter: Eric Cassady, President

The SRCC President shared that the designer that he had been in contact with regarding an update of the meeting signs has provided a draft of the signs. SOme tweaks will be made and then the design with be sent to a small group this week for initial input, before sending to the Executive Committee for feedback. There has been no action on the Outreach Committee, as there has been limited interest and there is not a committee chair. Gretchen has been in contact with Rob Tompkins regarding taking over the role of Mobility Chair. He is out of town for most of the summer, but would like to talk about the role with former mobility chairs.

5. 6:55  Vote to confirm committee chairs for upcoming term. [VOTE EXPECTED]

Presenter: Eric Cassady, President

Motion:  Dan Fredine/Vicky Moerbe To confirm the following committee chairs:

  • Planning & Zoning – Russell Fraser
  • Historic Preservation – Angela Reed/Michele Webre
  • Finance Committee – Sam Martin
  • Mobility – VACANT
  • Public Safety – Tom Groce
  • Parks and Environment – David Todd
  • Schools – Gretchen Otto
  • Communications – Betty Weed
  • 10/0/0  PASSED

6. 7:05  Committee check-ins on events/goals/issues.

Presenters: Committee Chairs.   1) Planning and Zoning; 2) Historic Preservation; 3) Finance; 4) Mobility; 5) Public Safety;  6) Parks and Environment; 7) Schools; 8) Communications

Planning and Zoning—The issues related to the sidewalk on Braeswood have been resolved – the developer has agreed to pay a fee-in-lieu, instead of putting in a sidewalk where the neighbors felt like it would present problems.

In the Penn Field area (east side of Congress, where Expose used to be) there is a project that has installed a retention pond for the 50,000 ft2 building that is being constructed, though the proposed intent of the building has not yet been shared.

Recently 3 properties on Woodward were demolished, the permit was issued 3 days prior to the work. There was no lead or asbestos abatement work done, though the properties contained asbestos. There are concerns for the health of the neighbors who were impacted by these demolitions.

After initial meetings with the developer of 200 Academy where neighbors voiced their unanimous opposition, there has been no new contact or information provided.

Historic Preservation: Melanie Martinez will monitor the City’s demolition ordinance process. There are currently several demolition requests in the neighborhood, though there is not much that can be done to oppose them. Earlier the committee met to discuss guidelines for which types of items they can effectively protest.

There is interest in getting street sign toppers for streets within the Mary Street Local Historic District and the pending National Register Historic District; however, currently the City does not allow them, but is working on developing a policy and should have more information later in the summer.

The application for the National Register Historic District is moving forward, and we are anticipating review of the application in October.

Angela is participating in a historic district design standards committee with the City’s Historic Preservation Office  to develop standard language for historic guidelines for Local and National Register Historic Districts.

Finance:  Nothing to report

Mobility:  Nothing to report

Public Safety:  The Chair of Public Safety shared that more volunteers are needed for the Neighborhood Watch program.

Parks and Environment:  The SRCC President shared that the letter has been sent in support of renaming parks and park features in memory of Rene Barrera.  There has recently been an effort to clear out some of the homeless camps adjacent to Heritage Oaks Park.

Schools:  There was discussion about a lockdown that occurred at Travis High and Travis Heights Elementary Schools last week, after class hours. While there were some complaintsthat the situation was handled poorly, it was expressed that the lockdown was executed and communicated properly.

Communications:  Articles are due by the end of May for inclusion in the upcoming newsletter. At present there are not a lot of articles slated for publication.

REPORTS OF AD HOC COMMITTEES and REPRESENTATIVES

7. 7:25 Check-ins on events/goals/issues

Presenters: Committee Chairs/Representatives. Norwood; NPCT; ANC*–see item below; SCC*; South Central Waterfront; St. Edward’s; S. Central Affordable CDC

St. Edward’s:  Demolition of Andre Hall has begun. They are still working on mold issues in 2 new dormitories related to flooding.

S. Central Affordable CDC:  There is an upcoming CDC meeting on Sunday. Gretchen will continue to informally represent SRCC.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

8. 7:35 Neighbors on Rebel Road have long-standing conflicts with an auto business that is causing numerous code violations, parking issues, and safety issues. SRCC has written several letters in support of the neighbors. City resources have been unsuccessful in resolving the issues. The neighbors recently applied for RPP, but the application was denied. A meeting was recently held between neighbors and multiple representatives from City departments.
Presenter: Dan Fredine, Vice President

Some SRCC EC members attended the meeting with the City. There were several neighbors in attendance (>20), as well as representatives from several City departments including Assistant City Manager Arellano’s office, RPP, Transportation, Code Enforcement, APD, and Municipal Court. There was discussion about some of the different tactics that could be used to control the problem behaviors of the auto business. It was stated that RPP has been granted for the first block of Rebel Road from Oltorf to Sunrise Circle, which was to be implemented the week of May 20th. Overall the main hope was for the RPP designation to make a large impact, but neighbors continue to be skeptical. Other options discussed included filing citizen complaints in Municipal Court, calls to Code Enforcement and APD, as well as the possibility of bringing a private lawsuit. Gretchen indicated that after the meeting it was suggested to get in touch with the Constable’s Office for District 3 (?), who is set up to enforce actions specifically against illegal auto businesses.

The SRCC VP has written up notes and will send them to the EC for review, along with materials presented at the meeting.

NEW BUSINESS

9. 7:45 Last year CodeNEXT, the plan to update the Land Development Code, was unsuccessful. With a new City Manager in place and a code that is still cumbersome and complex, the City is working again on an update. Council has already provided some direction on the code update, and there is a plan in place to have City staff update the code in the coming months. In order to make sure the neighborhoods’ voices are heard during this as-yet-undefined process, SRCC would like to put together an ad-hoc committee (similar to was done during CodeNEXT) to review the plan and provide feedback.  

Link to LDC Council Directives 4-29-2019.
Presenter: Gretchen Otto, Former SRCC CodeNEXT Committee Member

Council has passed a guidance document for the update to the LDC which includes specific information on density, parking requirements, etc. The city manager responded with a memo with information about the process and the team that will be implementing the changes (City staff). There is a concern that there will not be much opportunity for public input and the process will lack transparency. Initial information suggests that the transition zones near corridors will promote much more development further into the neighborhood. The SRCC LDC Committee will be meeting Wednesday at Claudette Lowe’s house at 7pm.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

SRCC currently has the following volunteer positions open:

  • Mobility Committee Chair
  • South Central Affordable CDC Representative
  • Area Coordinator for Area 4a
  • Land Development Code Rewrite Committee Members/Chair
  • Outreach Committee Members/Chair

Agenda & Minutes Prepared by Dan Fredine, vicepresident@srccatx.org

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