Saturday, May 5, 2007

May 2007 Garden SC Meeting

East Phillips Community 17th Ave. Garden

Steering Committee Meeting Minutes


Present: Eric Refsell, Brad Pass, Kevin Chavis, Cynthia Aguirre, and Linda Leonard

The meeting was called to order and the committee approved the draft agenda with a few additions; sub-groups in the garden, the mural and common harvesting, and a plan for trees.

Officers were elected by volunteering/consenting; Brad Pass - Chair, Kevin Chavis –Vice-chair, Cynthia Aguirre – Treasurer, Eric Refsell – Secretary, and Linda Leonard - GI liaison.

The garden’s financial spreadsheet was looked over and discussed. Exact numbers for assets and expenses will need to be determined. Cynthia as Treasurer has taken the responsibility to re-calculate the spreadsheet/financial statement.

Sub-groups in the garden
The steering committee was unanimous in the belief that allowing sub-groups in the garden fosters a divisive environment non-conducive to core community garden principles. It was then determined that a policy would have to be enacted and applied across the board, including participating school groups, bringing up safety and liability concerns. Garden rules and regulations are binding, and interested gardeners must show up to at least one meeting personally in order to pay plot dues and sign the “Garden Use Agreement”. Gardeners will be assigned plots according to the stated conditions and if there are more interested gardeners than available plots, prospective gardeners shall have to draw lots. It was noted that sub-groups of gardeners all “occupying” the same plot may give rise to unfair voting practices and new voting guidelines were briefly discussed. Additionally, the distribution of literature was discussed and the committee was concerned about misrepresentation of the garden. So far, the committee has resolved itself to the following actions: contacting Nathan Secor to discuss safety and liability issues regarding the children under his care, and asking the general membership to make a decision regarding the herb garden, the butterfly garden and other areas that can be potentially used as arable plots. Further action and discussion was tabled in light of time constraints.

Eric will be spearheading a compost clean-up initiative and will report back.

Parade of Gardens
The decision to enter the Parade of Gardens will be passed on to the general membership. If gardeners chose to enter the Parade, it was emphasized that work toward this goal should start sooner than later, including the organization of a committee.

Group Work Days
Committee members acknowledged that the last plan for group work days did not work. A new plan, then, will have to be devised. It was noted that there is no definitive list of group chores and responsibilities. It was also noted that any new plan must require all gardeners to contribute. There were no conclusive actions taken as this topic requires further discussion and input from the general membership.

Trees in the Garden
It was noted that there is an existing report regarding trees in the garden. The committee decided to review this report and pass it along to the general membership for discussion and voting.

Fiskars Tools
Discussion centered on bringing new committee members up to speed on the background. It was decided that the steering committee will need to talk to Lynne Mayo personally to try and resolve this situation outside of general garden meeting time.

Announcements to the general membership:
Brad Pass will be donating a rain barrel in order to collect and use rainwater that lands on the garden shed. It will be located on the West side of the shed, and any plantings that are located there will have to be removed.

1 comment:

Kevin Chavis said...

I just wanted to add that there was not unanimous belief that garden sub-groups were divisive. There are all sorts of local organizations that can be in the garden and not cause problems.

I will be working with Lynne to make our communal organic gardening group appear as it is. We have no plans to take over the garden, and want to ensure its success. This would be more effective to improve local food security long-term.