Minutes of the West End Neighborhood Association (WENA) Meeting
Wednesday, 10 October 2018
Reiche Community Room
Board members present: Ian Jacob, Steve Mortimer, Liz Parsons, Pamela Shaw, Bryan Van Dussen,
Board members absent: Barb DeSerres, Leana Good-Simpson, Gwynne Williams
Others present: Chaning Capuchino, Elaine Carver, Espahbad Dodd, Dominique Gabel, Landis Gabel, Michael Hitz, Deanne Leonard, Katy Marshall, Harley Marshall, Alice Mazurie, Christine McHale, Janet Mishoe, Lin Parsons, Tracie Reed, Alice Ruvane, Curt Sachs, Pat Shutts, Melissa Skahan, Penny Stevens, Kim Sutton, Corey Templeton, Clifford Tremblay, Wynne Wirth, Mary Zwolinski
The meeting was called to order at 6:32 pm and self-introductions followed.
Minutes from the September, 2018 meeting were accepted as read.
The Treasurer reported a total of $2088.41 in the checking account, with $562.18 available in general funds. There was $175.32 in the WECANAIP account, $30 in petty cash, $1176.71 in the Swim for Life account, and $144.20 in the Harbor View Edible Hillside account. All the money for Window Dressers was disbursed or returned to the organization at the completion of the build.
Liz Parsons said that neither Dave Argitis nor Sarah Colton were available for this meeting. But Sarah Colton had reviewed calls for service from the West End over the past month and noted that most were either for vehicle break-ins or for loiterers. The advice on vehicle break-ins is to make sure car doors are locked. Regarding problems with loiterers, the police encourage members of the public to call the non-emergency line: 207-874-8575. Police and MEDCU will be dispatched.
Chris Branch, the Director of Public Works for the Portland, responded to the questions that had been communicated to him from WENA last spring after he was unable to attend our meeting in May. He addressed the following topics:
- Scheduling of projects: the information can be found on the public works website, or call 874-8801
- Online map is available under Engineering, not Planning, on Public Works site
- DPW has been short 10 -12 employees for the past 2 years. There is high turnover in solid waste, with 12 of 14 employees new in last year, because it is hard work and people use it as a stepping stone to other City jobs.
- Snow removal: for sidewalk clearing, the City is issuing more ordinance violations and enforcing them. For help for seniors with plowing, contact Linda Weare at 541-6620. The City is purchasing smaller trucks to clear side streets sooner.
- Sidewalk repairs: if a sidewalk is hazardous notify SeeClickFix. Replacing a sidewalk with brick costs twice as much as concrete. Asphalt is ten percent of the cost of brick.
- Trash cans. For questions contact Kathryn Clark, cleanup operations. Cans cost $300.
- Recycling. Ecomaine used to be paid for recycled mixed paper. Because China is no longer accepting mixed paper, Portland will soon have to pay per ton to recycle it.
Cumberland County Gleaning Initiative: Colleen Donlan talked about the Urban Gleaning Initiative, to recruit volunteers to glean food on invitation from fruit trees and gardens in neighborhoods and give food back to the community.
Liz Parsons announced:
- a meeting at Reiche Thursday, Oct. 11 to discuss Andrews Square
- A search committee for new Board Members for WENA, headed by Steve Mortimer. Any WENA member(s) interested in serving were invited to approach any current board members.
- A meeting with Portland’s Superintendent of Schools, Xavier Botana, at Reiche School on Wednesday Oct. 24 at 9:00 am to discuss long term planning for Portland Schools.
Roseanne Graef announced
- A drive to knit Chase the Chill scarves, to be given away on Veteran’s day at Congress Square Park
- Movie nights at Reiche Community Room the 1st Monday of every month at 7:00 pm
- Book Club meeting 2nd Monday of every month in the Community Room
- The Anti-idling ordinance to discourage idling cars outside of schools
- Exercise Program Awards: to Suzanne Hunt for initiating the exercise program 3 mornings a week in the Community Room at Reiche, and to Pat Shutts for having attended class 1000 times.
Lin Parsons announced that on Oct.16th Maine Medical Center would begin tearing down the parking garage on the corner of Gilman St. Ian Jacob recommended looking on the Maine Med website for updates.
Chaning Capuchino made an announcement about Girl Scouts.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 pm.
Pamela Shaw, Secretary