Minutes - November 27, 2007

South End Neighborhood Association

November 27, 2007

Meeting Attendees:

JoAnn Morton, Scott J., Benna Eldridge, M. Montesano, Melissa Bucher, Gene Solan,

Mark Beaudoin, Robert Chaumont, Noriko Chaumont, Archie Goodbee,

William Pendleton, Nellie Morton, Virginia Hoke, Bill Jones, Carolyn McLaughlin,

Milton Wright, Rev. Victor Covington, Travis Klami, Eileen Cheong, Martha Cinnamon,

Matthew Foley, Mike Fargiore

Library Update (Scott J.):

* Library Board approved the proposed moved of the Howe to 200 S. Pearl Street. The agreement between the Library and Albany Housing has not been signed.
* Three months before the close of the Howe Branch the closing process will start. The closing process involves:
o Book reservations. The affect no book reservation after December 30th.
o Programs scaled back. During the months of January & February programs will be scaled back because of packing and cleaning.
o Monday thru Thursday activities will be scaled down.

* Public meeting for The 60% Design Plan for the Howe Branch will be held on December 3 at 6 pm at the Howe Library
o The review design at 60% will be open to input

Albany Police Dept. Update (Matt Montesano):

* Delivery drivers in the uptown area are experiencing a lot of robberies
* Flyers are being distributed on driver safety
* “Take Your Keys” flyers are being distributed. It is illegal to leave a car running that is unattended. The only legal way to leave an unattended car running is by having a car starter.
* PAL Toy distribution starting next week
o The number of toys given out is down. Between three and four thousand toys will be distributed.
o Toys R Us gave $6000 to the program
o Next year they might reach out to other areas for help
* United Front Youth Organization will march on Saturday from Giffen School to the MLK memorial. This is a group against violence.

Neighborhood Resource Center (Gene Solan):

* Neighborhoods Work Conference8 will be on Sat. Dec 1 at the First Lutheran Church located at 646 State St.
* Purpose of the conference is to get a handle on community assets, encourage residents to stay and to encourage others to live in Albany.
o The Challenges for Neighborhoods
o Senior Panel: Options for Seniors,
o Family Panel: Attracting and Keeping the Family in the Neighborhood,
o Youth Panel: Growing Up Safely and Successfully

Albany Fire Dept.:(Bill Jones)

* Demolitions have taken place at the following addresses:
o 59 Broad Street
o 30-32 Morton Avenue (structural and internal collapse)
* Codes initiative for the Block by Block
* Disaster Preparedness program now available. The Albany Fire Department is available to give the half hour presentation. (Need to schedule Bill Jones for a future meeting to discuss Disaster Preparedness)

Harriet Tubman Free School (Eileen Cheong):

* Students from the school want to work on a Public Art Works project. The school will work with the Grand Street Community Arts and would like SENA support with advice in locating a place to display the Artwork. Benna Eldridge from Trinity volunteered to assist.

CANA Report (Robert Chaumont):

* At the CANA meeting discussion on the Comprehensive Plan.
* Vacant Building discussed

Trinity (Benna Eldridge):

* VITA Tax program will start in February and is Free. Need help in spreading the word about the program.
o To take advantage of the program people must schedule an appointment. The hours will be from 9 – 12:30 and 4 – 7 Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
* Trinity is just one site that will be available for the VITA Tax program.

NYS Civil Service (William Pendleton):

* Workforce is low
* Community Job Fair discussed. In the past Ken Braswell(Editor of the South End Scene newspaper) organized a job fair in the Southend.
* NYS is willing to work with SENA for the Community Job Fair.
* Suggestions: Involve Churches, Trinity and other Neighborhood Associations. Invite employers who have jobs available.
* Use job fair as a means to raise revenue for SENA. Need to form a job fair committee to work out the details on date, location, who to invite, how to promote, sponsors for food, determine insurance requirements. The job fair should include a workshop to cover the basics about how to go about getting a job.
* Information on jobs with New York State: NYS Dept of Tax and Finance accepting applications for Temporary positions; Internships available with the Attorney Generals Office for graduate students, Building Services Aide positions available with the NYS Office of General Services, Exam Announcement for the Keyboard Specialist


SENA Nominating Committee (Mark Beaudoin):

* The nominating committee presented its recommendations for the officers and opened it up to the floor for additional nominations. The following people were nominated by the committee or from the floor and were voted in unanimously for the following positions.
* JoAnn Morton, President
* Mark Beaudoin, Vice President
* Robert Chaumont, Secretary
* Carolyn McLaughlin Corresponding Secretary
* Terry Walton, Treasurer

The members ratified the Officers nominations.

Concerns expressed by residents:

1. There is a bumpout on South Pearl Street in front of a residents home, which prevents parking near her home. The resident parks in the parking lot of the liquor store. In addition to the inconvenience to the resident it is a safety issue because of the unusual shape and location of the bumpout. There is pole fixture that has been struck by passing automobiles.
2. Need information on the Paint Program
3. How to inform residents about SENA meetings.

Next SENA meeting December 18, 2007.

SENA Officers will meet on Dec 6 at 5:30 at the SEIC 38 Catherine Street