Thursday, February 10, 2005

Epic General Membership Meeting - February 2005

Attendance: Ryan Brueske, Alfonso Cruz, Brad Pass, Marcelino Reyes, Francisco Lezama, Antonio Lezama, Jane Thompson, Rosie Cruz, Jane Franklin, Lynn Mayo, Albin Dittli, Stephanie Allen, Earl Simms, Amy Pass, Rachel Dittli, Linda Leonard, Arnold Polanski, Gandhi Mohamed, Hannah Leider, Suleman Mohamed, Carol Pass

The meeting was called to order by Carol Pass, interim president of EPIC.


Motion 1 (Albin Dittli, Brad Pass)
Approve the agenda with the addition of “new business” by Lynn M. Unanimous affirmative.

Motion 2 (Albin Dittli, Brad Pass)
Approve the minutes from Jan. 13 General Membership Meeting with the following amendments: motion 8 amended from “all issues representing neighborhood motions” to “issues regarding new board members” (Ryan)* .
Treasurer’s report amended to say that Lynn M sent several emails, and Rebecca did not respond. (LM)
Motion 5 amended from “January GMM” to “February GMM.”
Motion 6 amended to specify that Robert Thompson is our Neighborhood Revitalization Program specialist.
Unanimous affirmative.

HUD has money for window replacement for home owners and rental property owners with lead problems who may rent to families with children. There is no income cap. Carol Pass will try to get a HUD representative and sign up sheet to the annual neighborhood meeting.
Two part-time jobs are available to help relocate people whose apartments /houses are undergoing arsenic and lead abatement. Call Carol (721-4509) for Info. Or check the ad in Southside Pride.
Ryan Brueske has created two email lists – news and discussion, and a web page were such things as minutes, calendar and links. Currently to be included you must be invited by Ryan – e-mail him for an invitation.
Yusuf/Ghandi’s housing problem: he is getting grants and preparing to buy a home.

Treasurer’s report, Carol Pass gave Margaret Kirkpatrick’s report
Margaret (treasurer) could not attend, but found that there is about $2,940 available to EPIC, so that Flyers and etcetera for the annual neighborhood meeting can be paid for. Carol got the 2003 audit, (2004 is not ready yet)

Motion 3 (Linda Leonard, Amy Pass)
EPIC should see to it that any people needing reimbursements for money spent for EPIC expenses should be paid from this money. People needing reimbursement should submit receipts immediately.
Unanimous affirmative.

Question by Lynn M: where is the $200K formerly available to EPIC? Answer: It has been frozen by the city until we have a strategic plan and a budget for EPIC – signs of stability and accountability within the organization.
PPNA (motion 3 from Jan 13 minutes) PPNA was the fiscal agent for EPIC, but saw internal conflict and had not received a budget from EPIC, so they exercised their option to end their contract. The contract ended automatically on December 31st, 2004. The PPNA board was concerned about the problems in the organization and chose to end the contract early, on December 15th, 2004. Minutes from the PPNA meeting of November stated that they would give EPIC a 30 day’s notice informing EPIC of their decision.

Motion 4 (Linda Leonard, Lynn M)
To send correspondence to PPNA stating that we had no known grievances with staff members and to request in writing documentation as to what documents they conveyed, with whom they met and when.
Unanimous affirmative

President’s report by Carol Pass
Board equipment was moved to a downtown office. Due to possible legal ramifications, it will remain there for now.
501(c)(3) grant request was illegally revoked by the former president. Carol has consulted the MN Attorney General, IRS, and our congressperson as directed by the board and membership and work is going forward on refiling.
Insurance application due Oct 10, 2004, was not filed. Carol is filing it.
Former Executive Director submitted a letter claiming she was harassed and verbally abused at the October 14th meeting and, because of this, was allowed by the president to no longer come to the office, answer the phone or have contact with unnamed board and community members. The board minority and community was never informed of this nor were there appropriate votes on this according to the bylaws. Hearsay led us to ask PPNA for any letters to this effect. Carol Pass was given Rebekah’s letter by PPNA Director Elena Gaarder.
According to Director Gaarder, PPNA claims no responsibility for these problems.
We plan to try to move ahead, resubmit our 501©(3), rebuild the organization, while at the same time trying to unravel what has happened.

Motion 5 (Brad Pass, Suleman Mohammed)
To support Liga Hispanica de Baseball de Minnesota and their use of parks.
Discussion: Registration is open to all males over 18, there will be an information meeting February 25th, 6pm, at La Perla La Pacifica (about 60th and Nicollette Ave).
Unanimous affirmative

Motion 6 (Ryan Brueske, Linda Leonard)
We will do what we can to support Allina jobs creation project in the Phillips neighborhood. Discussion: who is Allina, what type of jobs would they bring? Allina would bring around 400 jobs to the Sear’s building; most of these jobs require only a GED or High School diploma; and they are trying to gather financial support from the neighborhoods and city. Most jobs are transfers, but there should be about 75 to 100 new openings and then a commitment to hire locally as employees leave the company. Objection (Lynn M): Why are they trying to get money from us? What is their legal track record?
15 affirmative, 1 opposed, 2 abstentions

Motion 7 (Linda Leonard, Brad Pass)
Correction to motion 2 from the board meeting Feb 5. This change is required by state law and will be an addition to the bylaws. Motion 2 amended: An eligible member of EPIC must attend a regular EPIC meeting and sign the attendance sheet and mark that he/she is requesting membership. The secretary is to keep track of membership and proof of eligibility as per the by-laws.
Unanimous affirmative.

Motion 8 (Amy Pass, Ghandi)
To accept the bylaws as corrected for grammar, spelling and consistency.
Unanimous affirmative.

Paperwork Committee report by Ryan Brueke
These are new policy and procedure additions (except for the last one) to help create a board with greater account ability and commitment to the neighborhood. Also with the skills we need to serve the neighborhood now that we don’t have staff. All of these were handed out for review.
Legal Standards of Board Conduct
Duties and Responsibilities of Board Members
Board Member Qualifications
Pointers for Participation
Board Member Application
Board Member Contract
Possible bylaw additions

Planning for the Annual General Neighborhood Meeting
Meeting is March 19th, 9:30am to 12pm
Flyers need to start being passed out by the 17th and finished by the 19th of February.
Carol will make up a flyer, has a list of volunteers to stuff envelopes and deliver the flyers to every house in East Phillips Neighborhood
Volunteers to help set up, to buy food and plan meeting.

New Business by Lynn M
Question on the documentation of the Franklin project – was everyone told?
Read a letter from David Fisher announcing the resignation of 6 of the board members.
(Lynn M) Motion to present a motion next meeting to have the participants in the recent conflict (particularly those mentioned in David Fisher’s letter) attend professional mediation.
Motion died for lack of a second.

Motion 9 (Brad Pass, multiple seconds)
Adjourn! Unanimous affirmative

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