SRCC EC Meeting Minutes — September 2018

MONDAY, September 17, 2018 6:30 PM
Joe’s Crab Shack Meeting Room
600 East Riverside Dr, AUSTIN, TEXAS

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1. 6:30 Meeting procedures, etiquette, welcome & introductions of new members
Presenter throughout: Eric Cassady, SRCC Co-Vice President, unless otherwise noted.
Meeting called to order at 6:30 p.m.

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 June 18, 2018 Executive Meeting
Reminder: schedule for Executive meetings: 3rd Monday of the month; 6:30pm – 8:30pm, Joe’s Crab Shack.  Proposed meeting dates through rest of term: Oct. 15, Jan. 21, Feb. 18, April 15

MOTION: Dan Fredine/Russell Fraser to approve the minutes from June 18, 2018, EC Meeting. 13 For, 0 against, 0 abstaining = PASSED

4. 6:45 Report from the [Co-Vice] President: Volunteer opportunities, upcoming newsletter, possible future EC meeting venue.
Presenter: Eric Cassady, Co-Vice President
Eric reminded us that we still have a need for President & coordinators for Areas 4a & 7. Gretchen called for articles for the newsletter and needs them by the end of September. The EC is interested in other possible venues to meet. (The criteria are that there is space for a large group, quiet enough to hold the meeting, no charge for use of space, and adult beverages are served.) If anyone has a suggestion, email

5. 6:55 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: Newsletter articles needed
Planning and Zoning: Russell shared that there is one active case: The Bickler neighbors are protesting the variance that was approved at the General Membership meeting in August. Elloa reported that there is a possibility of a memory care facility to be built at the end of Payload Pass. This property touches the headwaters of the Blunn Creek and touches the 100 year floodplain. The floodplain is being proposed to be expanded by the city and FEMA to the 500 year floodplain in November. This means more of the site will be in the floodplain after the new maps are approved. The fire department might want Alpine Road extended to allow for more than one entrance for emergencies (through the Blunn Creek Preserve).. The South Central Coalition had a meeting about this and they would like to know our thoughts. We have 3 restrictive covenants from prior development which would apply to this property. The developers want to amend them. There is concern that the drainage pond will be affected, which in turn would affect everyone downstream. Tom shared that neighbors near the Circle (behind the Continental Club) have reported that the security gate is being left open for the Statehouse Apartments. Russell will contact the Statehouse project team that he met with last year on their construction project (replacing the front apartment building with a mixed use building; already reviewed with P&Z and SRCC).
Historic Preservation: Ian reported that the neighbors of Bickler who did not attend the SRCC general membership meeting want a re-vote, because they do not agree with the position approved by Membership: to not oppose the request for variance. In a separate situation, he shared that there seems to be an exception to construction projects: the City may not have to give a notice of demolition if the building was being moved rather than demolished. There was discussion that this was inaccurate and neighbors DO need to be notified. Also, Elloa asked Ian what occurred at the city’s Historic Landmark Commission follow-up hearing on the demolition permit for the St. Edwards National Historic Register District. She attended the meeting where the demolition permit was postponed but did not attend the August 27 meeting because she was out of town. Ian wasn’t informed about this, but is contacting Angela to get the information.
Finance: Sam reported that our timeline requires a mid-year review, which was done last week. He reported that we are in the ballpark for expenditures as of the end of June. At the October EC Meeting, a 2019 forecast will be presented to EC for approval.
Mobility: nothing to report
Public Safety: Tom reports that some interest has arisen, but there is resistance to signing up online.
Parks and Environment: nothing to report
Schools: Gretchen reviewed that THES has a new principal and vice-principal. In addition, last week there was a PTA membership drive. Anyone can join, and it is possible to join on the website. In addition, anyone can volunteer at the school. The THES Fall Carnival will be Friday, Oct. 19th. Fulmore also has a new principal. Meetings about the re-naming of Fulmore are ongoing.
Communications: Newsletter articles are needed.

6. 7:05 J. B. Sigmon has volunteered for the currently vacant position of Mobility Committee Chair. The EC will vote to confirm for the remainder of the current term. [VOTE EXPECTED]
Presenter: Eric Cassady, Co-Vice President
Eric introduced J.B. Sigmon to the EC. J.B. shared that delineators will be installed at the corner of Annie and Eastside. This narrows the street and (hopefully) slows down traffic. This is a first step. Feedback once they are installed can be given to J.B. at, who will be continuing to communicate with the City.

MOTION: Claudette Lowe/ Mary Friedman to confirm J.B. Sigmon as Mobility Committee Chair for the remainder of the current term. 15 for, 0 against, 0 abstaining = PASSED

7. 7:15 The SRCC Finance Committee has a recommendation to establish a financial reserve policy. [VOTE EXPECTED]
Presenter: Sam Martin, Finance Committee Chair
Sam shared that we have some money in excess of reserves for operational costs, and the committee recommended that SRCC maintain approximately 2 years expenses in reserves. Any moneys above that amount can be spent. Eric asked about voting policy about spending money above the forecast. Sam clarified that any expenditure requests not already approved in the annual forecast would come before the Finance committee for review and then to EC for a vote before expenditure. Sam shared numbers for history of income and expenditures. There was discussion about how money has been used in the past, especially in terms of legal fees. Current policy and procedures for the Finance Committee is available on the Google Drive. There was discussion about reducing the amount to 1.5 times the operating costs of the current year. This decision can be revisited after a year.

MOTION: Sam Martin / Claudette Lowe to establish a minimum financial reserve, calculated by the yearly expenditure forecast times two. 14 for, 0 against, 0 abstaining = PASSED

8. 7:20 The SRCC Finance Committee has a recommendation to increase the 2018 forecast for contributions to schools. [VOTE EXPECTED]

8. 7:20 The SRCC Finance Committee has a recommendation to increase the 2018 forecast for contributions to schools. [VOTE EXPECTED]
Presenter: Sam Martin, Finance Committee Chair
Sam shared that the Finance Committee discussed the possibility of donating to the schools $500, rather than $100 this year because there seems to be a surplus to our funds at this point. There was a discussion that the money go to the PTA rather than administration of the school. There was also discussion that the money could be given to the school with an indication of where the money should be spent. Gretchen shared that the Travis Heights Elementary PTA’s budget is available online at

MOTION: Sam Martin /Gretchen Otto to increase the 2018 forecast for contribution to schools’ PTAs from $100 per school to $500 per school for this year only. 14 for, 0 against, 0 abstaining = PASSED

9. 7:25 Bouldin Creek Community Development Corporation is becoming South Central Austin Community Development Corporation and they are inviting other SCC NAs to join. The SRCC Finance Committee has reviewed the details and will make a recommendation. [VOTE EXPECTED]
Presenter: Sam Martin, Finance Committee Chair
Sam shared that the South Central Affordable Community Development Association (which formerly was called Bouldin Creek Community Development Corporation) would like a representative from SRCC for their board. At a previous EC meeting, concern was raised about legal liability for the NA to have a representative on the Board. After consulting with an attorney, Sam reported that there should be no concern legally. Gretchen shared that one didn’t need to be a board member to become involved. J. B Sigmon and Mary Friedman expressed interest in being involved. Although Gretchen is already a member of the board, there was a suggestion that SRCC appoint an official representative to stand for SRCC’s position. Gretchen shared the evolution that led to the formation and naming of the South Central Affordable Community Development Association. Gretchen shared that meetings are small and informal and are generally held every other month. J.B Sigmon volunteered to be the official SRCC representative.

MOTION: Gretchen Otto/Eric Cassidy to appoint J.B. Sigmon to represent SRCC as a member of the board for the South Central Affordable Community Development Corporation. 14 for, 0 against, 0 abstaining = PASSED

10. 7:35 Check-ins on events/goals/issues
Presenters: Committee Chairs/Representatives.Norwood; CodeNEXT; NPCT; ANC*; SCC*; South Central Waterfront; St. Edward’s

Norwood: Nothing to report
CodeNEXT: This ad-hoc committee no longer has any work. There are no more planned meetings.
NPCT: Nothing to report
ANC: Nothing to report
SCC: Elloa shared that the SCC meeting had a presentation on where the process to update the 100 year floodplain stands. The Watershed Protection Department is proposing, due to new rainfall data, that the current 500 year floodplain become the 100 year floodplain. November. The Mayor had made comments that the passage of Prop J would put a stop to any new environmental changes to the land development code, but new 500-year floodplain rules are going forward regardless. It is believed that changes will continue, despite the mayor’s comments.
South Central Waterfront: Nothing to report
St. Edward’s: The were a number of people posting surprise on Nextdoor about the fireworks at St. Edwards. Discussion in the EC was that this has been an annual event in recent years and we have been notified in advance of the event. Neighbors in Sherwood Oaks received notice after the event occurred.


11. 7:45 The Magdalena Hotel and Music Lane developments planned on South Congress are in proximity to the Texas School for the Deaf, requiring waivers to be granted in order to serve alcohol at restaurants on site. There is a vote on the waivers expected at the upcoming October General Membership meeting. This item was previously discussed at the October 2, 2017 GM meeting, as well as the September 3, 2018 GM meeting, with some good, detailed information in the meeting minutes.
Link to minutes of September 3, 2018 SRCC meeting (see item 6).
Link to minutes of October 2, 2017 SRCC meeting (see item 10).
Presenter: Marc Davis, Planning and Zoning Committee
Marc gave a brief overview of what was discussed about this topic at the September General Membership Meeting (see link above. There was discussion about how the 300 feet are measured (walking distance or as the crow flies) between a school and a business that serves alcohol. The city is requiring this development to apply for a waiver, as the measurement is (as the crow-flies) within the 300 feet. Given that SRCC’s stance on a waiver application is considered when City Council hears the case, he requested that SRCC come up with a process for making decisions about alcohol waivers. In a prior case with Torchy’s, SRCC opposed the waiver and several members went to City Council and spoke in opposition. Elloa shared that, although Torchy’s has to wait 18 months before doing so, they expect them to re-apply for the waiver and she presented questions for the applicant:

  1. Has Mr. Lyda contacted the Texas School for the Deaf PTA and asked for their input? Has the SRCC P&Z committee contacted the TSD PTA? Has the SRCC Schools Committee?
  2. Is the school acting as the legal guardian (in loco parentis) of the children in making the decision to not oppose the variance? (Question may be moot depending on #1).
  3. What does Mr. Lyda know about the Torchy’s variance request? Does he think if his alcohol variance request is approved it will weaken SRCC’s case in opposing Torchy’s? Why or why not? If we were to support his request, how can he help SRCC minimize the impact his variance request would have on Torchy’s new request?
  4. Is Mr. Lyda willing to return after SRCC meets with the TSD PTA?
  5. Who is providing financing for the project?

Eric responded by asking Marc to find out from the developer what is being asked of SRCC as an organization? Are we being asked to approve or just stay out of the way as this waiver progresses? Committee members pointed out that a vote of not taking the issue up would result in approval of the issue. Discussion continued about whether precedence would be taken into account when the City Council makes a decision on future alcohol waivers. Currently, SRCC has taken no position on this waiver. If someone in the NA is opposed, they would need to contact Eric or Dan about putting their opposition on the agenda to prompt discussion and a vote. If the developer wants to propose an agenda item to approve, he would need to present that, too. Marc said that he would follow up with the developer and report back to the EC before the next General Membership meeting.

12. 8:05 Clarification of SRCC bylaws and processes of delegating tasks, including presenting SRCC positions via letters or presence at meetings, and the significance of a majority vote.
Presenter: Carol Martin, Membership Chair
Carol asked, due to time, to postpone this discussion.

13. 8:15 Discussion of options to address under-attended September General Membership meeting, which falls on Labor Day. Consider skipping the September meeting, or possibly changing the meeting date. Note that SRCC Bylaws require at least 9 meetings per year, and we currently don’t have meetings in January or July.
Presenter: Eric Cassady, Co-Vice President
The EC discussed whether to permanently cancel the September General Membership meeting, which occurs regularly on Labor Day and results in low attendance. Concern was expressed about the fact that 3 months of business would occur in the August meeting, as there is no July meeting.


  • We still need volunteers for the following open positions:
    • President
    • Still also looking for Area Coordinator for Area 4a and Area 7.
  • Need articles for the newsletter by the end of September.

Meeting adjourned at 8:28 pm.

Agenda Prepared by Dan Fredine,
Minutes Prepared by Mary Janecek-Friedman,

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