SRCC General Membership Meeting Minutes – 8/1/2011

SRCC General Membership Meeting Minutes – 8/1/2011

1. meeting procedures, etiquette, welcome newcomers. presenter: sarah campbell, president, unless otherwise noted below.

2. membership announcements. presenter: carol martin: membership chair.

3. approve minutes from june 6, 2011, last regular monthly meeting (available at

MOTION: jean mather/toni house – to approve the minutes = PASSED

4. special guest – austin police dept officer robert barboza, our new district representative. introduction by shelly leibham, member, safety committee.
the recent shooting on south congress was a drug related crime that began north of downtown but ended in our area. officer barboza reported burglaries to be down from this time last year from 85 to 69 incidents. he recommends you reinforce your exterior doors with longer strike plate bolts and larger strike plates. windows can also be secured to make it more difficult to enter but a determined criminal is very difficult to keep out of a house. remove any valuables from your vehicle or at least from sight. gps units are very popular items to steal and the mounts are a sign that one is in the vehicle. be sure to take note of the serial numbers on all your valuables so you can later identify them; otherwise, the police have no way of knowing what is rightfully yours. photos are also a good way to document ownership.

5. Reagan National outdoor advertising at Woodland and IH35 (SP-2007-0560C(XT)) is requesting an extension of an approved site plan.  This plan was unsuccessfully highly contested by the neighborhood at the time, and SRCC has submitted opposition to this extension.  Unfortunately, the City almost routinely does extend site plan approvals upon request. Presenter: Patrick Roeder, resident opposed to extension.
In May 2007 the site plan was approved, but expired four years later on May 8, 2011.  Before the May 8 expiration date, Reagan applied for a one year extension of the approved site plan. The Director of Land Development Services may grant the extension based on certain criteria that Reagan must submit. SRCC has the right to appeal the Director’s decision to the Land Use Commission and also has the right to appeal the Land Use Commission’s decision to the City Council.  The property is zoned GR/general retail and the owner is claiming the site plan is for a copy shop, not an industrial billboard manufacturing facility. the building would be used to print billboards using heavy chemicals and would transport materials by semi using woodland as the primary access to the property.

MOTION: mary lovell/teresa griffin – appeal decision of the planning director to land use commission if in fact the extension is granted = PASSED

6. Plans for the historic Reuter House property at 806 Rosedale Terrace. Presenters: Kenny Hilbig, member, and Randy Chupik, owner/ developer.
this property is zoned historic and sits on a total of 9 lots, 6 of which are empty and the other 3 being crossed by the historic home. since its purchase two years ago it has been in use as a VRBO and for private events. there is an onsite caretaker who is tasked with making sure everything runs smooth and there aren’t renter problems. the owner and kenny are “shopping” the site around to try to get an idea of what will work best for further development. no variances are being proposed.  the landmark commission will have to agree to remove historic status on certain of the vacant lots in order for them to be developed.  an open house will be held sunday, august 14th from 1:30-4. the owner presented plans for developing the property into 5 or so private residences.

7. Norwood Property Feasibility Study, consultants’ options. Presenter:  Wolf Sittler, Director, Norwood Posse
3 years of effort have been in the works to save/restore the norwood house which was purchased by the parks department 25 years ago and then left unattended. on july 19th, the norwood posse presented a $300,000 restoration plan funded primarily with private donations to start the project and plans to raise the remainder. the proposal estimates the property would generate $100,000+/yr in general revenue.  feasibility consultants presented 6 options to the city/public, with 2 preserving the house, and ranging in price from 4-7 million dollars.

MOTION: wolf sittler/jean mather – for SRCC to support restoration of the house and grounds using private and public funding = PASSED

8. cutting of protected trees at 1208 woodland, status report. presenter: marty christman, chair, environmental committee.
the owner of the property cut down 11 trees on the property, 3 of which were large enough to be considered “protected” and 1 of which was thought to be large enough to be a “heritage” tree.  at june meeting, srcc moved to request maximum penalties and to restrict the site plan such that future development could not benefit from the illegal tree-cutting. after meeting with the city arborist it was learned the owner was subjected to the following: 1. 100% mitigation, which equals 60″ of tree circumference worth of new trees needed to be planted, 2. tree care and irrigation must be provided to those trees, 3. the site plan must be tree friendly by employing pier and beam foundations.  since the meeting with arborist, it appears some small trees have been planted and appear to be dying.  no site plan has been submitted and no $25 tree permit has been filed.  inadequate response by arborist to SRCC requests.

9. Herbicide spraying along Blunn Creek — latest news subsequent to SRCC representatives meeting with City Parks and Recreation staff. Presenters: Teresa Griffin and Jeff Kessel, members.
a volunteer by the name of Daniel White was given permission by city parks and watershed departments to spray a chemical herbicide along blunn creek and stacy park with the goal of killing poison ivy and several invasive species.  mr white is licensed and bonded for this type of work, but permission was granted upon the false statement that SRCC/the neighborhood approved his actions.  the safety of the chemicals being used has been disputed, and there is testimony that white went beyond his agreement with the city by spraying species he was not authorized to spray.  SRCC members found a very disturbing blog on the Internet by white, where he admits to past rogue spraying in City parks without permission.  SRCC reps strongly requested that the city stop mr white from spraying in ANY public park.  at white’s request to speak to the neighborhood, he has been invited to the executive committee meeting later this month since tonight’s agenda was already full.

10. finance committee recommendation for new treasurer to replace current treasurer, John Foote, who soon will be leaving the country for a new job. presenter: sam martin, chair, finance committee.
John served as the treasurer for the last 6 months but now must move on. the finance committee is recommending Les Case take John’s place starting immediately.  Les has experience with financial management of the non-profit organization, Yellow Bike Project, which will be very helpful to srcc.

MOTION: sam martin / sarah campbell – to elect Les Case as the new treasurer = PASSED

11. SRCC East development issues. Presenter: Toni House or Gayle Goff, members.
A. the effort by pepper’s bistro to change to a cocktail late night hours use has ended in a 7-0 denial of appeal, a very rare victory for srcc east. the planning commission also denied the appeal 5-1. it was explained to the applicant the riverside corridor is not in the central business district.
B. the riverside corridor plan should be rolled out in september or october with a possible adoption of a single family transition model similar to what is being used in raleigh, nc.

12. Oaks of Travis Heights, 1227 Newning proposed site plan description. Presenter: Danny Waters, developer.
danny is looking to develop this 1 acre property he purchased 3 months ago from a bankrupt owner. it is a difficult property as there is a 20′-25′ drop but he has come up with a plan for 12 detached custom homes.  he came to share the plan with us as his intention is to build something that works with the neighborhood.  the property is zoned MF-4, needs 25′ vegetative setbacks to satisfy the nccd and can have up to 60% impervious cover. the current plan calls for a shared, gated driveway that accesses newning and requires less than 45% impervious cover. there was a proposal for 32 units to be built on this same property and the neighbors polled felt the 12 unit plan was a better use.  claudette lowe, sandy bowman, melanie martinez and connie todd will form a contact group to discuss options and ideas with danny.

13. Area 8 Traffic Calming Project and RPP. Presenters:  Jeremy Elliott, Chair of Ad Hoc group working on traffic calming, and Kim Lanzilotti, petitioner for RPP.
willow springs has had cut-through traffic problems that can be addressed by a plan to install 7 traffic calming islands, per a design approved by the city and paid for with srcc funds. the next step is for the ad hoc committee to get at least 50% of the residents who will be affected by the calming devices to vote in favor of the plan.

14. Short Term Rentals — a Position Paper from WANG (West Austin Neighborhood Group). basically for having STRs regulated.  the paper will be posted on

15. Possible changes to Land Development Code Compatibility Standards, which historically have served as buffering protections between residential and non-residential developments. Presenter:  Jean Mather, Co-Chair, Zoning and Planning Committee.
compatibility issues will become more prominent as the city seeks to densify transit corridors. the Imagine Austin plan is hoping to address some of those issues.

16. S Congress Working Group — will have first meeting Tuesday, August 2, 2011 to develop parking plan with City staff.  Group includes nominees from Bouldin Creek and SRCC Neighborhood Associations and the S Congress Merchants Association.
Mary Lovell, Matt Lynaugh and Sarah Campbell are the srcc representatives.

17. Congratulations to all involved in a successful, re-imagined 4th of July event this year!

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