Minutes of the West End Neighborhood Association (WENA) Meeting
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Reiche Community Room
Board members present: Morgan Beede, Leana Good-Simpson, Rosanne Graef, Cassie Graham, Ian Jacob, Liz Parsons, Steven Scharf, Pamela Shaw
Board members absent: Clifford Tremblay
Others present: Dave Argitis, Elissa Armstrong, Jill Bock, Joey Brunelle, Joan Fischer, Suzanne Hunt, Ann Jolda, Steve Mortimer, Christine McHale, Clare Mohs, Bobbie Rausch, Kent Redford, Penny Rich, Alice Ruvane, Nina Sachs, Curt Sachs, Gail Sawyer-Gay, Gwynne Williams, Kara Wooldrik
The meeting was called to order at 6:32 PM and self-introductions followed.
Minutes from the April 12 meeting were approved.
The Treasurer reported that as of May 10, $553.13 were available in the general funds account, $145 in the WECANAIP Account, $30 in petty cash and $6201.21in the Swim for Life account. Rosanne said that the separate accounts at Norway Savings has been combined into one checking account. The Treasurer will continue to keep records for the different accounts.
Dave Argitis and Liz talked about her ride around in the police car with Dave and Sarah. One thing WENA members should remember when asking at meetings for details about specific events is that the PD gets a huge number of calls daily. Anyone seeking specific information should contact Sarah Colton at any time, giving her an opportunity to look into the matter.
The PPD is short staffed and is offering a $10,000 cash bonus to get started.
There should be some move movement soon on recurrent prostitution issues around Walker and Neal Streets.
A significant arrest was recently made of a heroin dealer on Salem St.
Dave works Tuesday through Friday (10 hour days) and is using a car right now, rather than a bicycle, due to the Department’s being short staffed. He does have an office in Park Side, but is almost always out on the streets.
Sarah is a civilian employee.
David explained the rationale behind and use of the PPD’s newly revised criminal trespass authorization form. A copy of this form is on WENA’s website in the resources section.
A substantive discussion about specific matters followed on David’s remarks.
Kara Wooldrik, Executive Director, Portland Trails, talked about her organizations’ efforts to put in a “circumpeninsular” trail that would run all the way around the Portland peninsula. She said they are working on gaps, such as the one along West Commercial St. that will eventually link the Old Port to Back Cove and to Thomson’s Point. Kara also announced a mini grants program to help local neighborhoods and organizations with “place-making” initiatives. They can help with very small infrastructure grants and or organizational help.
Gwynne Williams explained how the produce from the WENA garden plot at the Clark St. Community Garden would go towards the Locker Project and food-challenged children and families at Reiche School.
Pamela Shaw presented plans for planting edible groves at Harbor View Park, starting with the planting of the first plot on Saturday, May 20th. Volunteers were invited for planting events and for getting involved in the project long-term.
Rosanne Graef talked about opportunities to get involved in planting at Clark St and Taylor St. Parks.
- Elissa Armstrong gave an update on the Window Dressers program.
- Rosanne Graef talked about plans for National Safe Boating Week, with a “Wear Your Lifejacket to Work Day” on May 19th, and an opportunity to participate in a Facebook photo event with everyone wearing a life jacket on the steps of City Hall on May 20that 9:00 AM.
- Councilor Thibodeau shared issues he was working on, including plans for cold storage on the Western Waterfront, Maine Medical Center developments, plans to broadcast City Council meeting on Facebook, a vote to promote 100% clean energy for the City by 2040, and the budget.
- Roseanne Graef described plans for a streetscape project at Pine and Clark streets, bumping out the street to make the intersection safer.
- Steve Scharf reminded everyone of the School Budget vote on June 13th.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:07 pm.