Council of Neighborhood Association (CONA) Meeting Minutes
December 11, 2018, 6:30 pm
Present: John Kennedy, Spicewood; Paul Ash, Mc Doel; Judy Berkshire, Eastside; Marc Cornett, Bryan Park; David Walter, Third and Ritter; Elizabeth Cox-Ash, McDoel; Don Granbois, Covenanter; Mary Morgan, Covenanter; Patrick Murray, Prospect Hill; Jan Sorby, Bryan Park; Sandi Clothier, Near Westside; Jon Lawrence, Bryan Park; and Nancy Shin, Bryan Park Conor Herterich, HAND.
Secretary’s Report: President John Kennedy asked for approval of the October meeting of the secretary’s report. Don Granbois moved to accept the minutes and Paul Ash seconded. The minutes passed by voice vote. 13 ayes and 2 abstentions.
Treasurer’s Report: Treasurer Elizabeth Cox-Ash reported CONA’s bank account has $2,017.97 in savings and $644.99 in checking. Green Acres Neighborhood
Association’s savings account has$246.25. This report covered November and December 2018. Jon Lawrence talked about the importance of having more than one signer on organizational banking accounts. Mary Morgan asked where the money in the CONA accounts came from and Elizabeth reported that it was left over from a time when the city had a paid position for CONA. Jon moved to accept the treasurer’s report, Sandi seconded, it passed by voice vote unanimously.
Announcements: John Kennedy thanked Marc Cornett on behalf of CONA for the successful andenlightening lecture on November 13th, “Between Two Neighborhoods”. Don Grandbois said it was well attended (over 60 people signed the attendance sheets) and it opened many people’s eyes to positive options for the old hospital site. The overall impression is that there is still time to make a positive impact at this site.
Guest: Conor Herterich, Historic Preservation Program Manager, City of
Bloomington: Conor attended Stephen Foster University and has worked for the past 6 years as a high school teacher. He is interested in the stories and places where history happened. He quoted Jane Jacobs and talked about the “power of place”. He expressed his appreciation of adaptive reuse as a sustainable, cultural and economically smart practice. Sandy asked Conor for clarification of language that appears on the city website pertaining to the demolition of historic buildings.
UDO Discussion: President John Kennedy informed CONA that the deadline for submitting comments on the UDO has been changed to Jan 4th. Sandi wrote a letter to Scott Robinson, Assistant Director of Planning and Transportation regarding
the UDO process. Her main ideas were that the process has not been conductive for participation because of a lack of a summary and outreach to neighborhoods.
Patrick suggested that we work through our city council representatives about our concerns and that we all take some time to totally read the entire document.
Jon expressed concerns about the third module giving much power to planning staff that has in the past gone to public boards. He added that the administration doesn’t want a Design Review process that many other communities use. Marc voiced concern that the new draft is moving Bloomington backwards about 20 years rather than making good plans for the next future 20 years. Jan mentioned that she talked to the consultant who conveyed that the primary directive the company was given was to “streamline the building process to make it easier to build in Bloomington”. In streamlining the process, much power is given to the plan staff to vary regulations up to as much as 25%. Much discussion focused on how to get information out to residents. Don suggested that CONA write a guest editorial to the Herald-Times using Sandi’s letter as a starting point. It was agreed that CONA would write a guest editorial and that members would start meeting with council members as soon as possible.
Housekeeping: President Kennedy suggested a change in time and day for the CONA monthly meetings. Some members felt the time was awkward, too early to allow for dinner before and too late for dinner after. Mary suggested 5:30 to 7:00 would solve that problem. John will reserve the room for the next year in accordance with our new meeting time while keeping the meeting on the 2nd Tuesday of the month.
4th Street Parking Garage: David Walter serves on the Technical Advisory Committee of the Bloomington/Monroe County Metropolitan Planning Organization. David gave technical advice on the discussion to repair or replace the 4th street parking garage. David gave a short overview of how precast concrete structures are built and how TIF money is allocated. He shared the list of problems with the garage which includes rusting, failed supports and failed guard rails. He attributes this failure to a lack of maintenance in the past. He feels that we have an open parking lot on College that will be developed in the future and so this makes it the best time to demolish the old parking garage and build a new one.
Adjournment: 8:30 pm