Downtown Minneapolis Neighborhood Association
Minutes from Board of Directors Meeting on Tuesday, August 10, 2004
800 LaSalle Avenue South, Suite 131, Minneapolis

I.          Call to Order

Tom Hoch called the meeting to order at 6:28 p.m.  Other board members in attendance were David Abele, Dee Cotten, Andrew Hauer, Gene Nessly, and Carletta Sweet.  Board members Kim Motes and Jodi Pfarr were unavailable.  Nonboard members in attendance included June Harmon, financial consultant; Sue Jahn, North Loop resident; Natalie Johnson Lee, 5th Ward Councilmember; Sarah McKenzie, Skyway News journalist.

II.        Update from Councilmember Natalie Johnson Lee

Natalie explained that the biggest thing [the City Council is] talking about is the parking situation around the Target Center and in the Warehouse District, and briefly discussed the loss of parking ramp revenue related thereto, and extending metered parking time.  She will send a parking department representative for further clarification and to obtain DMNA board feedback.

Natalie advised that there may be a new surcharge on taxi fares to offset gasoline price hikes.  Andy raised his concern for the rising discrimination against gay couples by taxi drivers and referenced a recent article in Lavender written by Mike Kraus related thereto.

Responding to Andy’s inquiry regarding a Skyway News article on de-emphasizing neighborhood groups, Natalie expressed her strong support for these groups in providing vital democratic input on city projects and encouraged more participation in the process.       

III.       Consideration of July 2004 Minutes

The minutes from the July 13, 2004 board meeting were unanimously approved.

IV.       Consideration of July 2004 Financial Reports

June Harmon distributed and explained the F2004 Budget vs. Actual as of July 2004; the Profit & Loss YTD Comparison statement for July 2004; and the Wells Fargo check register for July 1-31, 2004.  These financial documents were unanimously received and filed.  Additionally, June presented to Tom a new reimbursement for NRP that will bring the cash balance back up by approximately $13,000; added MCDA on the board’s liability insurance; and received the amendment to the NRP contract adding $102,000 ($40,000 for 2 years for RJP with the balance going to administrative costs).  

V.        National Night Out Update

Sue Jahn briefed the board on the successful outcome of downtown’s National Night Out celebration held on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 in front of the Federal Reserve Bank on West River Parkway.   It was well attended by community members as well as public officials (i.e., Mayor R.T. Rybak, Police Chief Bill McManus, Commissioner Peter McLaughlin, Senator Martin Sabo, and Councilmembers Lisa Goodman and Natalie Johnson Lee) and was filmed on MTN 14.  The board expressed its gratitude for all the work Sue devoted to this event and its enthusiasm for supporting the event next year.

VI.       Land Use Committee Update

Andy advised that at the next LUC meeting on Tuesday, September 7th, the new 21st Century Towers at 240 Hennepin Avenue South condominium project will be presented and encouraged all board members to attend.  Thereafter, Andy presented the following projects for action:

·         Restaurant, bar and dance club redevelopment proposal for the 2-story Stimson Building at 700 Hennepin Avenue South (see Wednesday, August 4, 2004 Star Tribune article, and the August 9-15, 2004 Skyway News article)  

·         Conditional Use Permit to install entrance gate system for vehicles at Le Meridien Hotel at 601 First Avenue North on Block E

Both projects were unanimously recommended for approval by the board.

Since Mission American Kitchen & Bar located at 80 South 8th Street never came before the board for its sidewalk café license application, Andy will follow up with the City Council to ascertain the reason for this oversight and to re-emphasize the importance of DMNA’s involvement in the review process.

VII.     General Membership Meeting

Tom confirmed that this year’s general membership meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 9, 2004 at 6:30 p.m.  The location will be the same as last year’s, University of St. Thomas Law School.  Thereafter the board discussed potential agenda items and whose terms were expiring. 

VIII.    CCNP Restorative Justice Update

Tom distributed Gena Gerard’s July 20, 2004 letter to Chief Judge Lucy Weiland and explained that the focus of her letter was to address the problems with the payable system currently in place.  Since evidence suggests a failure to monitor whether the payable offenses are being paid, and RJP has capacity to increase its case load, it is proposed that these payable offenses be treated as misdemeanor crimes handled by the court system and thereby eligible for diversion to the RJP.


IX.       Adjournment

Thereafter the meeting was adjourned at 7:35 p.m.

Signed this ________ day of ________________________, 2004.

_______________________________                      _______________________________
Chair                                                                            Secretary