March 2021 Board Minutes

BOARD MEETING MINUTES – Monday, March 15th, 2021 – 7:00 p.m., via Zoom

Board members present:  Jon Dejong, Alyssa Thull, Dick Fiala, Dan Williams, Dirk Nicholson, Brian McDonald, Pat Collins, Carl Arrell, Joan Staveley, Lori Gubrud, Kellie Hanson, Heather Grovum, Brenda Anderson

Board members absent: Dan Treinen

Also present: Councilmember Jeremy Schroeder, one community member

Called to order: 7:00

Officer Reports:

Secretary – Carl moved to approve the February minutes. Dirk seconded. Voice vote, all in favor, none opposed. Motion approved.

Treasurer – Brian reported that TNA’s bank balance is $46,829.88. Year-to-date expenses totaled $8,678.50 and there is no year-to-date income.

Councilmember Schroeder

Jeremy reminded the board about the Minnesota Vaccine Connector website at He also spoke about the City’s preparations for the Derek Chauvin trial.

Turning to the Roof Depot site, Jeremy said that the problem for the City Council is that both the Public Works project and the East Philips Neighborhood Institute (EPNI) plan are good projects. For Public Works this is an ideal spot to provide the best service. He is looking to see more justification from Public Works in the next month and how Public Works and EPNI could work together.

Jeremy noted the policing reform charter amendment he co-sponsored passed the full Council last week. The Charter Commission has 150 days to review the amendment and send it back to the council. If the Council passes it again, it will go to ballot in November.

Priorities and Committee Revisioning Proposal

Dirk presented a proposal for updating committee structure and goals based on the recent revisioning process including community meetings and brainstorming sessions. 

The Beautiful Purposeful Spaces committee would shift to “Building, Land-Use & Housing” perhaps meet on an as-needed basis. It would focus on new developments, affordable housing, parks, multi-modal transportation, and safety. Sally and Pat noted that existing Spaces events like Spring Spruce-up and Autumn Alley Cleanup wouldn’t have a place in that focus anymore and suggested either adding a sub-goal for Beautiful Purposeful Spaces, or moving those events to the Livability and Engagement or Environmental committees. Alyssa asked if there was enough work for this committee and whether it should be folded into another. Dirk suggested it might not need frequent meetings and could be ad-hoc. Dick noted that more development things are coming our way and it would be good to have people focused on these issues, especially giving passionate residents a voice. Carl and Pat thought there was enough work to keep Spaces/BLUH as a separate committee.

Environment would continue to focus on water, energy, waste, education, and environmental justice.

Equity would become a standing committee and focus on advocacy, education, and partnerships/fundraising.

Engagement could transition to Livability & Engagement, focusing on community safety/crime, block captains, community building events (such as Winterfest, 4th of July, National Night Out, etc), and reach out to underserved communities in Tangletown.

Overall goals for all committees include bi-monthly committee chair meetings for better cross-collaboration, re-evaluating the TNA mission statement when the new board is in-place in June, and defining the role of business in each committee or solely within the Livability & Engagement committee.

Jon moved to approve the new committee structure as drafted. Lori seconded. Voice vote, all in favor, motion approved.

Board Assessment/Time Management

Carl reported the results of the board survey. Board members were split on meeting time management; Carl suggested that until the board changes at the annual meeting, members make an extra effort to keep things running smoothly. Sally suggested using the new board training as a review session for board procedures. The board did agree that meetings were inclusive and everyone was given a good chance to share their opinions.

Committee Updates

Spaces: Dirk presented a proposal for a home safety rebate program, drawn primarily from Nokomis East Neighborhood Association’s example. It would include a 50% one-time match up to $500 per household. He proposed to reallocate $13,000 from the committee’s banner initiative to fund the safety rebates. Brian asked for more specifics about required documents, approved vendors, etc. Carl suggested an income threshold; Dirk agreed but noted the difficulty of qualifying applicants. Brian also asked what demand other neighborhoods had experienced; if demand is high then an income threshold would be more important. Sally said Lynnhurst’s program has been very popular. Heather suggested specifying an income threshold for the program but relying on the honor system instead of strict verification. Dan W. agreed. Various board members suggested income caps of $150,000 (which is the Federal COVID stimulus threshold), $120,000, and $90,000. Sally proposed tabling the program announcement until the April meeting.

Dirk moved to set a board goal for developing a safety rebate program to be presented at the April meeting. Jon seconded. Voice vote, all in favor, none opposed. Motion approved.

Engagement: the committee is going forward with a food drive on May 1st or May 2nd. Process will be similar to last year where items were placed on front steps and collected by volunteers. Large in-person events like the 4th of July may be a challenge so the committee is looking to piggy-back on other TNA events to drive board membership and volunteer engagement. The committee also talked about formalizing communication steps each committee should take, and suggested being proactive in providing and posting content so that Sally isn’t the funnel. The committee thought Twitter is being under-utilized.

Sally suggested a morning masked outdoor board-drive event for the first or second weekend in May. Heather suggested pre-printed board information (on bags or post-cards) and treats-to-go. Sally will send a Doodle poll around.

Dan W. moved to approve up to $300 for a board drive event in May. Heather seconded. All in favor, none opposed. Motion approved.

Environmental: Pat reported that the energy program paid out two more rebates. The committee will partner with the Mayflower Earthrise group to promote a plastics event on Thursday April 15th 7pm. They will also partner with the Spaces committee for Spring Spruce-Up. The committee is holding another second-hand shopping event on March 20th due to demand. They will also host a master gardener talk about resilient yards including a garden tour, and hold a social media campaign for Earth Day (April 22nd) with a raffle. Pat asked the board to approve $100 for the Earth Day event.

Carl moved to approve $100 for the Environmental committee’s Earth Day event. Jon seconded. All in favor, none opposed. Motion approved.

Equity: Dirk shared that there is increasing support in the City Council for the East Philips Neighborhood Institute (EPNI) Roof Depot site plan; Jeremy has expressed interest in the plan too. Juliann gave an update on the three equity questions that the committee asked all committees to consider when making decisions; the group will be proposing a more concrete tool for committees soon.

Executive Director Report

Profit & Loss Statement: Sally presented the statement.

Dirk moved to approve the 2020 P&L statement. Brenda seconded. Voice vote, all in favor, none opposed. Motion approved.

Annual Meeting: Sally asked for suggestions for speaker topics. She also asked whether board candidates should fill out a form before the meeting or still allow in-meeting nominations. Pat suggested a town-hall-style meeting for council seat candidates. Jon suggested safety again; Heather suggested a conversation around changes to Minneapolis Police Department and policing. Dick suggested somebody from the Park Board and plans for handling unhoused persons this year. Sally will send email and a poll by the end of the week.

Spring Newsletter: Sally asked the board to firm up any events in March committee meetings and provide her with any updates by March 19th.

Executive Director Review (closed session)

Board members met in a closed session to discuss the executive director annual review and compensation changes.

Adjourned: 9:18pm

Minutes submitted by Dan Williams, TNA Secretary