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Downtown Neighborhoods Association

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Monthly Meeting

January 6, 2016

 

The January 2016 meeting of the Downtown Neighborhoods Association was held at the Harwood Art Center, pursuant to prior approval. Board Chair Reba Eagles called the meeting to order at 7:05.

Board members in attendance: Sue Brych, David McCain, Dick Deichsel, Chan Graham, Margaret Connealy, Noelle Baroody, Reba Eagles, Ric Higginbotham, Alice Bergman and Robert Bello. Three board members were absent. Five other neighbors also attended. Sign in sheets are on file. (Note: the board currently has only thirteen members due to the recent resignations of Sandy Gregory and Jeni Pope.)

Introductions were made. The agenda was approved. The December 2 minutes were approved.

Dick Deichsel gave the Treasurer’s Report. For the month of December 2015, there was $77.79 in income and $0.74 in expenses. The December 31 balance was $24,545.62. The balance is “overstated” by about $5000 because the check to the contractor for the tree project has not yet cleared the bank. Dick also discussed the 2015 budget, noting that the “Community Projects” budget of $5000 showed no expenditures in 2015 since no one in the neighborhood requested a grant. The Treasurer’s Report was approved and is on file.

Dick also announced that he will continue to serve as treasurer for another year.

 

VALLEY AREA COMMAND CITIZENS POLICING COUNCIL

Dick Deichsel described the VACCPC. This advisory body of citizens meets regularly with APD to voice concerns about the department. (See abq.gov/police for schedule and minutes.) Dick discussed a number of related issues: the Department of Justice consultant says that APD staffing is too concentrated at headquarters (400 Roma NW) and the current chief is trying to decentralize. Forty officers retired or resigned when the DOJ oversight started. There are now only 858 sworn officers, down from 1100 in some prior years. The overwhelming majority of recent applicants did not pass the background check. There were six fatal shootings by APD officers in 2015. Dick favorably described “role-playing training” to prepare officers for the split-second decisions the job requires.

 

MEMBERSHIP

Margaret Connealy asked if DNA meetings would be more effective with more attendance by neighbors, in addition to the board. A long discussion ensued about various means to increase neighborhood participation beyond just the board. Increased use of nextdoor.com and a return to the volunteer hand delivery of DNA newsletters were mentioned. David McCain encouraged board members to promote the annual meeting on nextdoor.com.

 

Sue Brych said she will resign from the board.

 

HISTORIC HOMES TOUR

            Ric Higginbotham reviewed plans for the tour. All nine homes are scheduled. We need to continue the publicity effort. Ric passed out a list of media outlets, asking members to indicate if they have a connection at any of them. He distributed copies of a press release. More docents are needed. Ric reminded board members that each member is expected to volunteer for one of the several tasks required for a successful tour. The City has not yet started the renovations to Mary Fox Park so we may have to use Lew Wallace Elementary School as the organizing site for the day of the tour. There was a discussion of sites for the distribution of promotional posters.

 

ZONING

            There were no zoning issues.

Robert Bello discussed the need to form a Green Committee to incorporate guidelines for green technologies (e.g., solar panels) into the regulations for historic overlay zones. He will make a presentation on this issue at the annual meeting.

Marie Popp asked if the DNA Sector Development Plan overrides existing zoning for the areas of 19th and San Pasquale that were recently added to DNA. There was a discussion and a consensus that the SDP would apply to the new area.

 

Chan Graham said the trees are all planted in the tree project demonstration block (14th between Fruit and Lomas).

 

The meeting was adjourned at 8:25.

 

Respectfully submitted,

David McCain

Secretary