Samish Neighborhood Association

Neighbors in Bellingham, Washington, working together

SNA Minutes 2013-08

Samish Neighborhood Association Meeting

August 8, 2013, Community Baptist Church

Meeting called to order at 7:00 PM by President Carpenter.

Board members present: Joe Carpenter, Steve Abell, Garey Vodopich, Dick Conoboy, Don Hale

Board members absent: Tom Roehl, Christopher Morrison, Brian Benjamin, Kevin Probasco, Junga Subedar, Edward Alexander, Suneeta Eisenberg

QUORUM NOT PRESENT – no voting on motions, reports, or minutes approvals can occur.

Guests: David Bruner, our Community Baptist Church contact person

Public Comments: none

President’s Announcements: none

Old business:

Treasurer’s report: Balances as of 7/31/13 are: Savings $5; Checking $2033.39. Recent activity: $15 deposit, $78 paid out for annual USPS box rental, $10 paid for June meeting room rent.

Fall Newsletter plans were discussed. We need to get copy to Greg McCracken in the next two weeks to enable him to edit and publish the Newsletter. Joe will draft his semiannual President’s Letter, ask each recently elected board members (Benjamin, Probasco, Subedar, Alexander) to submit a short autobiographical sketch, and write a short note about the upcoming picnic including guidelines of what type of dish to bring. Steve will draft an article on traffic and parking issues surrounding University Ridge and a short note about the new dues collection schedule. (Dues will not change; only the timing of when they are due: April 1, the start of our official fiscal year.) Dick will draft an article that provides an overview and current status of the University Ridge project and the city approval process. We may also include a short note about the city’s water meter installations going on now through October if there’s room. Articles should be emailed directly to Greg McCracken with copy to Joe Carpenter.

September general meeting & picnic is coming up on Sunday, September 8, noon to 3:00 at Lake Padden Park. Joe will issue invitations to local elected officials and candidates for local offices and confirm rentals of tables, chairs, and grill equipment. We’ll need to get the announcement signs out about a week in advance. Don is organizing a big garage sale and will put up a sign highlighting the picnic.

There was a brief discussion about revision of the by-laws. A new draft was sent out to board members by Steve, and the language was generally agreed to. Our current by-laws state that the board can vote to approve by-law changes but the Association members should be informed of the changes before the vote so they can have input if they desire.

Ambling Development University Ridge update was provided by Dick. In mid-August the SEPA checklist will be accepted, rejected, or somewhere in between by the Planning Director, Jeff Thomas. The city’s report on deliberations supporting its decision should be out at about the same time. The date for consolidated process to come before the Hearing Examiner is set for September 11. Comment periods for the SEPA determination will be open for two weeks after the announcement, and the comment period for the Hearing Examiner will be open for a week and a half before the hearing. We should all encourage Samish residents to share their opinions, whether for or against, with the city prior to the hearing examiner meeting. There are many letters in opposition posted on the city website and none in support. The Planning Department’s report should spell out what their position is and their reasoning to support it.

Dick gave us an update on MNAC. The recent meeting was heavily attended by residents of Puget and Samish neighborhoods because the Planning Director, Jeff Thomas, was going to speak about the status of the Ambling University Ridge development. Both the Director and the mayor got a clear picture of the opposition to this project. It is unclear whether a roomful of opposing opinions will have any effect on Thomas’s decisions regarding University Ridge. He indicated at the meeting that both the SEPA decision and the Planning Department’s report on how that decision was reached should be available in mid-August.

New business: We discussed doing another telephone session to invite Samish residents to come to the picnic and pay their dues. The board members present supported the idea, and Joe will poll the other board members to see what their opinion is. The last such phone-a-thon was judged a success by the number of new memberships that were paid. All many of our member residents need is a gentle reminder to pay their dues.

Garey brought up an issue of a vacant house at the corner of 35th and Donovan. The house appears to have been uninhabited for some time, but the ownership is not clear. It may have been foreclosed upon. It’s an eyesore to neighbors close by, and one neighbor is interested in cleaning the lot up to improve overall appearance of the area. It might be useful to talk to the city to see if the ownership situation can be clarified, and whether the city might help with the cleanup. Garey will pursue this further and report back at a future board meeting.

Meeting adjourned.

Steve Abell,  Secretary

 

 

Posted in General 4 years, 1 month ago at 8:02 PM.

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