September 2, 2014 General Meeting Minutes

Submitted by Chris DiCapua. Meeting began at 6:46 pm, adjourned at 7:38 pm. Present: Anton, Wilder, Klein, DiCapua, Knapp, Silva, Antonellis, Wyatt, D’Ippolito, Zenzola, Emma. Absent: DiGiulio

 

Welcome and Introductions:

A list of PSCA accomplishments from August 2013 through August 2014 was distributed to the membership as well as a postcard invitation to the upcoming Columbus Square Fundraiser. Pam Zenzola welcomed guests and thanked Francoluigi’s for their pizza donation.

Pam called for volunteers for a number of upcoming events.

 

By-Laws Vote: 

Prior to today’s General Meeting, the revised by-laws were distributed, and two neighbors submitted some comments/questions for clarification.

Below is the transcript of the comments and responses:

1. What does the word “representative” mean in Article 3, Section 2(a)? If a husband and wife own a property, does that mean that only one of them votes as “representative” of that property? Or do both vote? I think the latter is your intention. For clarity, I recommend deleting the word “representative” from this section. Alternatively, you could write two different sentences, one for “residents” and another for non-resident property owners. If a corporation or partnership owns a property, presumably you intend that only one representative of the corporation or partnership votes.

2. What does the word “representative” mean in Article 3, Section 2(b)? The implication seems to be that a business gets only one vote even if it is owned by several people. If that’s the case, then the word “representative” means something different in Section 2(a) than it does in Section 2(b). The wording of the two sections should be reconciled and clarified.

1 & 2. The intent here, as you correctly surmised, is that every adult resident is entitled to one vote, while a business would need to assign one individual to vote on behalf of the business entity. While I agree this could be clearer, I think the distinction between Article III, Section 2 a & b is with the word “each” as applied to residents, as opposed to “one” being the descriptor for business.

3. Does Article IV, Section 8 mean that political party Committee persons cannot serve as Directors or Officers? Is a Committee person an elected municipal official? I think the answer should be no, but I’d appreciate a clarification.

3. We discussed this point in some depth and a Committeeperson can serve on the Board. We considered a Committeeperson to be a party office holder, not a municipal office holder, so Committee service would be acceptable. Of course, should a Committeeperson be elected to the Board, they would be subject to the same stringent limits on political activity as all other board members, and could not use the platform of the Association to the benefit of the party or any candidate.

Following are comments related to the PSCA Bylaws:

Article II Section 2 (o)
Is this limited to public schools? I would have a problem contributing to an organization that supports a school associated with a religion.

Yes this is limited to local public not schools with a religious charter or mission.

Article IV Section 5
Is there any value to changing the wording as follows: …shall not authorize or approve debts in total beyond the current balance….

We have it covered even without the clarification when the Bylaws are combined with our financial procedures. As we take on debts, they become part of the rolling budget and we update the current balance of the treasury accordingly. Board members aren’t authorized to spend beyond their budget line without board approval, so I’m not sure there would be the opportunity for this to be a problem.

Article V Section 5
If there is a tie for the last available position how will it be resolved?

On the specific issue of a tie, that would seem to be something that doesn’t need to be spelled out in the bylaws so as not to tie future election committee’s hands. So determining what to do in case of a tie can be a decision made by the election committee. As long as that procedure is spelled out at the very beginning of the process for all voters and prospective candidates, then whatever is chosen should be fine.

Article XI
There may be informational value for Association Members and contributors in knowing which standing committees exist.

As our standing committees change from time to time based upon serving the needs and request from the community listing them in the by-laws would not be prudent. However, to keep the members informed the committees are listed on both the website and in the newsletter.

A motion was made to accept the amended by-laws. A suggestion from a resident was made to add partitions to the voting tables for more privacy in future elections. A vote was taken and the motion to approve by-laws was carried.

 

Board Updates:

Zoning

Jared announced 2 possible but unconfirmed zoning cases for this month: 1246 Federal & 1400 S. Darien. The PSCA website and Facebook page will be updated when more information becomes available.

Home Tour

Caroline New, event chair, reminded residents of the upcoming Home Tour, scheduled for October 11 from noon to 4:00 pm. Brigantessa, the soon-to-open restaurant from the team behind Le Virtu, is now confirmed as the after-party location. Caroline announced that she is accepting payment at tonight’s meeting – by cash and checks or credit cards. Advance tickets are $20, and can also be purchased through PayPal. The Home Tour Committee is seeking additional homes and program advertisers, as well as volunteers for the day of the event. Those interested should contact Caroline at hometour@passyunk.org. For more information visit passyunksquare.org/hometour or email hometour@passyunk.org!

Education

Tom Wyatt announced school starts next Monday, September 8. Andrew Jackson School (1213 S. 12th St.) needs about 100 volunteers for its Community Day on Saturday, September 13. At 11:00 am, volunteers will begin various painting and beautification projects around the school – those interested in volunteering should contact education@passyunk.org (no tools or experience needed). After the volunteer work is completed, at 3:00 pm the ribbon for Jackson’s brand new playground will be cut. Refreshments and a DJ will be on hand for the celebration, and all are welcome.

Fundraising

Ilene Wilder announced that the current number of PSCA sponsors is 15 to date. Residents were encouraged to visit the PSCA website for the list of sponsors. The newest sponsors are Noord, Garage and Francoluigi’s. When visiting our sponsors’ establishments, thank them for contributing to the betterment of the community by supporting the PSCA. Ilene invited people to volunteer to get involved in her committee. Those interested in donating money to the PSCA can do so via PayPal on the PSCA website.

Beautification

On Saturday, September 6, Passyunk Garden will be part of the neighborhood Garden Tour from 1:00-4:00pm. There will be 22 gardens featured. Passyunk Garden is open every Thursday from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm and Sunday from 4:00 pm—6:00 pm. All are welcome.

A new mural is scheduled for the Capitolo Playground Building on the Wharton Street and playground facing sides. Over the winter work will be started on a mural at 10th and Washington Streets, facing the Sunoco Station. The Beautification Committee welcomes ideas for new projects. For more information email beautification@passyunk.org.

The next meet up with the PSCA pruning club will take place on Sunday, September 21 at 10:00 am, at Passyunk Gardens. Participants will work with certified arborist Joe Schiavo on one of the blocks in the neighborhood. Last month the club pruned the 900 block of Tasker. Residents were reminded to save the date for the final session on October 5.

The next neighborhood tree planting will take place on November 15th. Email beautification@passyunk.org for more information. An advanced Tree Tenders class will take place on September 17. The class is full but it is still possible to participate in a webinar. The basic Tree Tender Class must be completed first. Those interested in helping out should email beautification@passyunk.org for more information.

PSCA is partnering with the Philadelphia Water Department in their Soak It Up! Adoption Program this year to ensure that storm water management installations through out the neighborhood – the planters and rain garden at Columbus Square Park, the planter outside the South Philadelphia Older Adult Center, the tree trench on 12th Street between Dickinson and Tasker, and the tree trench on 10th Street between Wilder and Reed – are as beautiful as they are effective in keeping our water clean. Volunteers are needed to help monitor these sites. Those interested in helping out should email beautification@passyunk.org for more information.

Parks and Translation Projects

Chris reported that the third session of ESL classes will began at Columbus Square the week of September 8. Level 1 (for beginners with a little bit of English) meets on Tuesdays for five weeks, beginning September 9. Level 0 (beginners with no English) meets on Thursdays for five weeks, beginning September 11. The cost for five weeks, including materials, is $20.

Chris informed guests of the South Philly Language Exchange Program. Residents should check the PSCA Facebook page for information about September’s Language Exchange.

Chris invited residents to View from the Top: Columbus Square Park Fundraiser scheduled for Friday, September 12 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm on the roof of Wharton Lofts (12th and Wharton Streets) to help kick off Columbus Square Park’s fundraising campaign and learn of the proposed renovations to the park. Participants will enjoy drinks and bites donated by local restaurants and find out how to get engaged. Suggested donation is $25. There are three ways to purchase tickets:
1.) by check made payable to “Passyunk Square Civic Association” with “Columbus Square Fundraiser” written in the notes line; checks should be left with Jessica Porco, Recreation Leader at Columbus Square; 2.) via PayPal on the Columbus Square Facebook page, or 3.) at the door.

The monthly PSCA Newsletter continues to be translated into Spanish and posted to the website monthly. Chinese translation of newsletter will begin in the fall, pending award of recently submitted Activities Grant.

Outreach

The NAP is planning a meeting on Monday September 15, to be held at Angel’s home (1326 S. 9th St). Volunteers are being sought to help with various projects. Angel announced that the PSCA is looking for a new leader for the Welcome Wagon program. Those interested should contact Angel directly.

$200 in cash and a $100 Acme Gift card were awarded each to three Block Party Award recipients: the 700 block of Ellsworth, the 700 Block of Sears, and the 600 block of Annin. These community building block parties are scheduled in the coming weeks.

 

Speakers:

Officer Ace Delgado, Community Relations Officer, was scheduled to speak but unable to stay at the meeting. Pam spoke for him. He reports that bicycle and auto thefts are up in the neighborhood. Officer Delgado suggests that nothing be left in cars to reduce risk of break-ins. He reports that violent crimes are down in the neighborhood significantly. He also strongly recommends that residents turn on porch lights in front and rear of their homes. Statistics prove this deters crime. He invited interested residents to support the Police Department by attending the Division Police Banquet on September 18th from 6:00 pm-10:00 pm at Galdos Banquet Hall (1933 W Moyamensing Ave).

 

Announcements:

On Saturday, September 6, a 10K run starting at the neighborhood Rita’s Water Ice and ending at the Fountain will take place. 3500 runners are expected. The event will take place from 7:00 am-11:00 am. Residents were advised to read signs to learn of anticipated parking restrictions. An after party is scheduled at the fountain at the end of the event.

Pam announced that next month we will host a speaker from the City Planning Commission to discuss the process for planning for the future of the municipal complex at 12th and Reed.

La Hoja Informativa más reciente de la PSCA ahora está disponible en español. Haz clic aquí. The most recent PSCA Newsletter is now available in Spanish. Click here.

Monthly general meetings will resume this Tuesday, September 2, at 6:30 pm, in our usual location in the Annunciation BVM Church hall (10th and Dickinson St., entrance on Dickinson) with a very important item on the agenda: a vote on the updated Passyunk Square Civic Association Bylaws!

Click here to view information about the Bylaws if you haven’t already, and then on Tuesday please come out to vote, enjoy pizza from Francoluigi’s, and help us kick off the Fall!

At the meeting each of the PSCA committees will present updates on neighborhood happenings, and the Trash & Recycling committee will also have a limited supply of blue recycling bins to give out on a first-come, first-served basis. See you there!

View from the Top: Columbus Square Park Fundraiser
Join your neighbors on FridaySeptember 12 from 6 pm to 8 pm on the roof of Wharton Lofts (12th and Wharton Streets) to help kick off Columbus Square Park’s fundraising campaign and learn of the proposed renovations to the park. Enjoy drinks and bites donated by local restaurants and find out how you can get engaged! Suggested donation is $25. There are three ways to purchase tickets:
1.) by check made payable to “Passyunk Square Civic Association” with “Columbus Square Fundraiser” written in the notes line; please leave check with Jessica Porco, Recreation Leader at Columbus Square
2.) via PayPal on the Columbus Square Facebook page
3.) at the door!

Gold Star Park Kids @ Play
Kids at Play is a monthly playgroup offered in conjunction with the Friends of Kirkbride, South Philly Food Co-op, and Friends of Gold Star Park. The final Kids Play of the summer will be held on Saturday, September 20 from 9:30 am to 11 am. Toys, a group activity, and healthy snacks are provided. For more information about Gold Star Park events, visit the park’s Facebook page.

Capitolo Playground Advisory Council
The next Capitolo Advisory Council Meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 10 at 7 pm - all are welcome!  Meetings are usually held on the first Wednesday of every month. For upcoming events at Capitolo, visit the Capitolo Playground Facebook page.

SchoolSuppliesFlyer2School Supply Drive

Please join us in collecting school supplies for our neighborhood schools, Jackson and Kirkbride, through September 6! Drop off any supply donations at Acme (1400 E. Passyunk Avenue) or the firehouse (1357 S. 12th Street), or bring your donations to the General Meeting this Tuesday! Copy paper is especially needed, along with other suggested items: book bags, #2 pencils, pencil sharpeners, erasers, pens, crayons, glue sticks, boxes of tissues, broad-tip markers, scissors, pencil cases, spiral-bound or marble notebooks, pocket folders, hand sanitizers/disinfecting wipes, rulers, calculators, construction paper, colored paper, paper towels, and Band-Aids. Click here for more information and a printable list.

 

Community Day at Jackson School

Andrew Jackson School (1213 S. 12th St.) needs about 100 volunteers for its Community Day on Saturday, September 13! At 11 am, volunteers will begin various painting and beautification projects around the school – please email education@passyunk.org if you are able to volunteer (no tools or experience needed). After the volunteer work is completed, at 3 pm we will cut the ribbon for Jackson’s brand new playground! Refreshments and a DJ will be on hand for the celebration, and all are welcome!

HomeTourPicTickets are now on sale for the annual Home Tour on Saturday October 11, 2014, with Brigantessa, the soon-to-open restaurant from the team behind Le Virtu, now confirmed as the after-party location. Advance tickets are $20, and you can purchase online through PayPal here or in person at the General Meeting this Tuesday!

Advertisers and additional homes are also still being accepted – for information, visit passyunksquare.org/hometour or email hometour@passyunk.org!

The Home Tour, one of PSCA’s most important annual fundraisers, is a self-guided ticketed event showcasing homes throughout the neighborhood. The tour features homes in all stages of renovation, and provides a chance to compare contractors, get ideas, and meet neighbors. The Home Tour will also be featured in the citywide 2014 DesignPhiladelphia Festival.

ESL Classes

The fourth session of ESL classes (Level 0 and Level 1) will begin the week of September 8 at the Columbus Square Recreation Center (12th and Wharton).  A registration session will be held at the Center on Wednesday, September 3 from 6:30 to 8 pm. Call Columbus Square at (215) 685-1890 for more details.

South Philly Language Exchange Program

Do you want to learn some Spanish? Would you like to meet Spanish-speaking neighbors and help them to learn English, while supporting a local Mexican restaurant and building community in Passyunk Square? Details for September’s Language Exchange will be posted soon on the PSCA Facebook page, so stay tuned! This event is open to everyone and is informal and fun. If you come, you can order food or not, and you will be made to feel welcome!

Pruning Club

Join us for the next meet up with the PSCA pruning club! On Sunday, September 21 at 10 am, meet at Passyunk Gardens. We’ll work with certified arborist Joe Schiavo on one of the blocks in our neighborhood. Our last two sessions were very successful and we learned a lot of great tips. Check out some photos on Facebook, and save the date for the final session on 10/5!

Passyunk Gardens at Wharton & Passyunk is going strong!  Open hours are Thursdays 10-12 and Sundays 4-6. We’ll also be at the South Philly Food Co-op’s garden tour on Saturday, September 6 - get tickets here!

For more information on tree events, work at Passyunk Gardens, or other projects to beautify the neighborhood, email us at beautification@passyunk.org, or visit our web page.

Soak It Up! Adoption Program
PSCA is working with the Philadelphia Water Department this year to ensure that stormwater management installations in our neighborhood – the planters and rain garden at Columbus Square Park, the planter outside the South Philadelphia Older Adult Center, the tree trench on 12th Street between Dickinson and Tasker, and the tree trench on 10th Street between Wilder and Reed – are as beautiful as they are effective in keeping our water clean. We’re looking for volunteers to help us monitor these sites. If you are interested in helping out, please email beautification@passyunk.org for more information. You can also read more about PWD’s innovative Green Cities, Clean Waters initiative at their website.

The Zoning committee will meet at 7 pm on Tuesday, September 9, at Annunciation Church Hall (10th and Dickinson). There are two cases this month:

  • 1246 Federal Street – permit for a proposed use of a three family dwelling
  • 1400 S. Darien Street – permit for the second floor addition at rear (29′ 8″ x 10′) for a legalization of a multi-family household living (7 dwelling units) from second through third floor in the same building as existing personal vehicle repair and maintenance (auto repair shop) on first floor.

The PSCA Zoning Committee meetings are opportunities for neighbors to hear the details of zoning applications within our civic association boundaries. The Zoning Committee does not make final decisions on the applications, but it does send letters to the Philadelphia Zoning Board Administration. Check Facebook or Twitter for any last minute changes. Please email zoning@passyunk.org with any zoning-related questions.

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