FREMONT NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL MEETING
March 22, 2004
BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Benjamin Grossman, Pete Hanning, Julia DeBroux, Alan Younker, Norma Jones, April Thanos, George Heideman, Vafa Ghazi, Toby Thaler, Dic Selin.
GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS: The FNC minutes from the 1970s forward have been found. It was noted that the FNC needs an archivist to maintain historical records. The chair moved to appoint Dic Selin as the FNC Archivist. Motion approved. There was an article in the PI on 3/22/04 regarding N. 36th and Phinney. Copies were provided.
TREASURER’S REPORT: No verbal report. April Thanos provided the following information for inclusion in the minutes:
$ 9.29 Checking
$ 215.64 Savings
$ 8,700.17 MM
Total assets: $84,572.29
MINUTES: The February 2004 minutes were approved as corrected.
GUERILLA GARDENING: May 1st is the date for the spring cleanup. The rain date is May 8th.
COMMUNITY CENTER: The consultant on the Community Center is out of town. Jack Tomkinson reported that a virtual Community Center may be a viable alternative. The concept would be for smaller locations to take on certain activities, rather than having all activities in one location.
MEMBERSHIP: The FNC has fifty-eight members so far this year.
LAND USE: The QFC appeal was lost. There is a large new project at 41st and Leary.
LAKE UNION DISTRICT COUNCIL: There was no meeting in February. The next meeting is in a week and they will discuss N. 36th street issues.
ZOO: There may have been an appeal for the parking garage, which was denied.
COMMUNICATIONS: The latest newsletter was sent out, and there are extra copies available for distribution by hand. The next newsletter is due in July or August.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING: April Thanos received a revised budget. The total has not changed but the distribution of funds has changed. The issue may be on the City Council agenda on April 6th. A letter from Benjamin Grossman and April Thanos has been suggested by CHIPP. Motion and second to send a letter; approved. April will let the Board know the exact date of the City Council meeting. There may be a need to extend the FNC budget funding through the end of the year if the project receives fall funding rather than spring funding.
OPEN SPACE: The company has been chosen for the work at Ernst Park. The work is expected to be completed in July 2004. The FNC may be able to discuss the name of Ernst Park with the Fremont Public Association and present alternatives at the Fremont Fair.
PUBLIC SAFETY: Pete Hanning reported that the North Precinct report did not contain significant information for Fremont outside the liquor license issue. Nectar has signed a Good Neighbor Agreement.
OLD BUSINESS: Bicycle Board-The FNC needs to replace John Ryan as its representative regarding advocacy on bicycle issues. John has suggested that the FNC consider a letter endorsing the Cascade Bicycle Club position on local issues on 34th and striping. A letter was authorized and Toby Thaler will draft the letter. Toby Thaler moved that the letter address issues throughout Fremont. Motion passed, and Toby will draft the letter.
Bridge Way Mural- The new president of the Fremont Arts Council, Lars Henrikson, has suggested that he coordinate with Benjamin Grossman regarding combined efforts to paint and maintain the mural.
Annual Meeting- The meeting will be held on April 26th at the Fremont Baptist Church, with refreshments from local merchants. Motion and second to authorize a postcard to members announcing the Annual Meeting. Passed. Vafa Ghazi and Toby Thaler will send the postcard reminder for the meeting to current members. Board elections will take place at the meeting. Cor Bader and John Ryan will not be on the Board in 2004. John has resigned due to a conflict of interest associated with his new job. All committee chairs should have a short report prepared for the meeting.
Liquor Licenses in Fremont- The FNC sent out a letter inviting all known businesses in Fremont that have a liquor license to attend the AGM. The Liquor Control Board sent a letter regarding the 412, 36th street, and the FNC reaction to new licenses. There was a discussion regarding the cost of signing a Good Neighbor Agreement, which currently includes provisions about food service, security, windows, and more. Owners of Bottleworks in Wallingford and Browers Café in Fremont spoke to these issues. The FNC may need more information regarding the specific provisions of the current GNA because certain provisions can be overly restrictive for owners. Some owners want the same provisions for everyone, and much discussion of the issue is anticipated at the AGM. Benjamin Grossman will invite Tom McKenna to attend the AGM and address the issues of the business owners. The architect for Browers expressed the opinion that the current GNA opens owners to liability. The Fremont Chamber of Commerce had a meeting regarding a ‘Great’ Neighbor Agreement for everyone to sign.
Traffic Calming- SDOT attended the Fremont Works meeting. Fremont Works is ad hoc, and there was no vote taken at the meeting. The FNC has a major concern with the traffic signal at Fremont and N. 36th due to traffic on N. 36theast of Fremont. The FNC options are to find money for calming or to oppose the big package. The neighbors seeking traffic calming must apply for matching funds by 4/4/04, now unfrozen by the City. The December vote was to spend $21,000 toward matching funds, and the N. 36th street neighbors are currently working on the application. Any group can be the application sponsor. The FNC is not the fiscal sponsor for the application. The only role of the FNC is for the matching funds. The biggest concerns are the conditions and contingencies for spending the $21,000.
Toby Thaler made a motion to authorize the N. 36th street neighbors to use $21,000 in matching funds to go forward with the application; that the Chamber of Commerce finds $10,000 to add to the matching funds; and that the neighbors work to make the project as cost effective as possible. Motion seconded. There was a suggestion to amend the motion to say the $10,000 could come from anyone, not just the Chamber of Commerce and business community. Motion retracted. Pete Hanning suggested that a meeting at the mayor’s office on this issue should be discussed at the AGM. There was a discussion of not putting a halt to the entire process. Motion and second to form an ad hoc committee to explore political action on this issue. Member of the committee will be Julia DeBroux, Candace, Toby Thaler, and Pete Hanning. Passed.
Motion and second that the FNC strongly supports implementation of the entire Fremont downtown circulation plan, especially the traffic issues on N. 36th and other impacted streets, and authorizes expenditures of up to $21,000 for traffic calming matching funds on N. 36th street. Motion amended to include the FNC writing a letter supporting the application for the matching funds. Passed with one vote against the motion.
Bylaw Revision- A proposed Bylaw revision on expenditures raising the dollar amount and procedures for authorization was discussed. The Board will recommend the Bylaw change at the AGM.
NEW BUSINESS: Chamber of Commerce- The Chamber of Commerce had a dynamic meeting regarding street and traffic changes. Circulation changes are big and on the horizon. Lights at several locations will change traffic patters. $140,000 in matching funds is needed and the CofC has committed to the match even though not all of the funds are secured. The FNC has severe concerns about circulation issues and may oppose all plans currently proposed.
Fremont Works- The next meeting is March 25th at 5:30 at Steve Louie’s office.