Meeting Minutes

Present: Mary Kay Falconer, Casey McLaughlin, Donna Legare, Mike Brezin, Melissa Jacoby, Tom Schulte and Mario Taylor (part-time).

Agenda items:

~The board agreed to replace the blue bird house as the existing one in the dog park is falling apart.
~The monthly Treasurer’s Report was distributed.  There were minor expenses for the Children’s program and flowers for a Board Member.  The treasurer’s report will be attached to the minutes.  The board voted to accept the minutes.  
~Mario asked that a date be designated for the Springfest so that he could obtain a permit from the City for the event.  Subsequently, the date of May 19 was identified as the most appropriate time.
~Membership report:  We are up to 278 members.  
~Mike Brezin, Mike Bannister and Mary Kay met with city planners and traffic engineers re:   Betton Road.  Work there will be broken down into phases:  before, during and after the repaving.  It was a positive meeting but there’s a sense that consistent pressure will need to be applied to the City to ensure the project proceeds.  In addition, it was expressed that the mayor should be included in the discussion.  At the meeting, a request was made that we have a “stop” vs. a “yield” for pedestrians; however, so far, the City has not acted on the request.  The appropriate people were at the meeting and planners are anxious to help improve the safety of the road.
~Drainage meeting:  Casey & Mary Kay both attended the meeting held by the City.  The Trescott Project will begin within the next couple of months.  In order to ensure the trail is going to be restored after the construction, contact with the project lead must be maintained.  The Lee Avenue Drainage project is still in the planning phases.  The City will present options in late summer and move forward in 2020.  Information about the project will continue to be put on our website.

Debrief from retreat:

1.     Urban Forest (Arbor Day, etc.)  Donna published an article in the Democrat designed to get people to realize the urban forest isn’t just in a park, it’s also in your yard.  The BHNA will publicize the free tree planting sponsored by the City.  The concern is that because of the hurricane, homeowners are removing trees as a preventative measure to reduce risk of damage.  Therefore, the BHNA is looking for ways to discourage tree removal.  Some thoughts floated include Betton Hills sponsoring something similar to the Audubon wildlife friendly yard tour but specific to Betton Hills; promoting a reach-out to new residents because it’s been noted they are more prone to remove trees; and promoting on our website articles or links to articles that would address these issues; and asking Bill Armstrong, a tree expert, to write an article.  
    2.    To promote safe walking and bicycling, we discussed tying a promotion of walking and biking in the neighborhood with the Springfest event.
    3.    Promote responsible trash, etc.:  Always a challenge to change behavior; Ann will write an article about it for the board to review.  
    4.    Effective communication and coordination:  Mike and others are working with the Alliance of Tallahassee Neighborhoods (ATN) with a focus on the more positive things we can do:  participation in city projects vs. opposing the city on things like the city garage
    5.    Partnerships with Goodwood and Willis Dairy:  We hope to do things with other neighborhoods:  summer movie, ice cream, etc.  Mario and Michael are primarily responsible.
    6.    Events/Activities:  Recently someone posted on Facebook about helping elderly neighbors who need help.  Mario is working to coordinate activities.    
    7.    Area History program on the Betton Cemetery:  A number of ideas were floated to move the project forward:  Casey found a write-up of Betton Hills history on the website.  Melissa volunteered to take it as a project but she can’t work on it until summer.  There could also be an oral history component.  Other potential resources are Larry Rivers, Dot Inman Crews, and Kent Spriggs.  
    8.    A request was received to promote home and neighborhood safety programs.  The issue is that most of the security consultants advocate lighting yards and cutting down bushes.  No action was identified to move forward.  
    9.    A suggestion was made to create a schedule for communications as a way to highlight the board’s work and improve the neighborhood.  Ann volunteered to put together a schedule.

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We met at Ashford Club Apartments Meeting Room ().