Minutes05 Sep 2012 08:41 pm

Minutes from September 4, 2012 PSCA General Meeting @ SPOAC

Meeting began at 6:44 pm, ended at 7:55 pm. Attendance: Approximately 39.

Board Members: Anton, DiCapua, D’Ippolito, Emma, Fioretti, Geary, Knapp, Knox, Morris, Wilder, Zenzola.

  1. 1.      Announcements
    1. Welcome and Introductions: Pam Zenzola welcomed the general membership back from the summer break, and gave an overview of what the Board has been working on over the summer hiatus. This included the annual Board retreat, the designation of PSCA as a Registered Community Organization, and the approval of our annual budget, among other initiatives.
    2. New Board Member: Tina Geary has been elected to the Board after serving for eight years on the PSCA Zoning Committee.
    3. Food Sponsors: Thanks to Chickie’s Deli for donating the hoagie tray, and Acme for donating water.
    4. 2.      Committee Reports
      1. Communications: Cassie Knox reported that PSCA is planning a website redesign in early 2013. We continue to grow our Facebook, Twitter, email distribution list, and text message option (send the word “PSCA” to 215-987-5555).
      2. Beautification: Andrew Emma reminded neighbors that Passyunk Gardens is open on Sundays from 4-6pm. Committee is Looking into installing more public art in neighborhood, like the recently completed mural of birds by Eder Muniz at 9th and Federal, funded by PSCA. The fall tree planting will happen in November.
      3. Trash and Recycling: Carmela Fioretti informed us that the next e-waste recycling event would be in early November at the Acme.  Over the summer, a trash “think tank” formed and these volunteers visited 42 businesses to let them know about compliance with new Streets Department trash can requirements. Of the 42 businesses contacted, 16 already had trash cans, and four have since added them. In addition, volunteers are needed for a new PSCA “Clean and Green” committee. In addition, Dickinson Narrows Civic Association, our neighbor to the east, will be sponsoring, along with Pho Ha, a fall clean-up at 6th and Washington and will need volunteers.
      4. Education: Christine Knapp is looking for a volunteer to lead this committee, as well as more volunteers to fill around a dozen roles to assist with education. Each volunteer would have a specific and manageable task. Over the summer, a Back to School supply drive was held and was successful. Neighbors can also donate to specific fundraising projects at the Jackson School through the DonorsChoose.org website (www.passyunksquare.org/2012/09/03/donate-to-jackson-classroom-needs/). PSCA will host a three-hour advocacy training on Oct. 27 on how to advocate for your child in his or her school and outside of school on a broader policy level. This will be open to everyone.
      5. Planning: Karin Morris reported on two ongoing projects. First, PSCA is awaiting final permitting from the Streets Department on the 30 “Welcome to Passyunk Square” signs to be installed on key streets in the neighborhood. Second, PSCA is creating a new feature on the PSCA website on available development sites in our neighborhood, working with local volunteer Lynn Mandarano.
      6. Parks: Chris DiCapua gave on update on activities happening at the three parks in our neighborhood. Capitolo is hosting a flea market on Oct. 13 (rain date Oct. 14), as well as a charity baseball game on Sept. 28 (followed by a two hour draft beer and buffet at South Philly Bar & Grille), whereby 20$ of the proceeds will go to Capitolo for the restoration of the playground. Yoga at Columbus Square resumes in the fall. Friends of Gold Star Park is looking for volunteers to lead efforts at that park. PSCA is also working with Play In-Between on the possibility of creating a pop-up park in our neighborhood.
      7. Fundraising: Ilene Wilder gave an update on the business sponsorship program, which has netted several Sustaining Sponsors as well as other levels of support, from large to small. Our newest Sponsor is 10th Street Laundromat, whose owner, Lisa Budnick, presented her sponsorship check to Ilene. Sponsors will receive window decals that say “Proud Sponsor of PSCA”.
      8. Events: Trish Kowalski promoted the Oct. 13 home tour, in conjunction with Design Philly. PSCA is still interested in additional homes to feature on the tour, so please contact PSCA if you would like to volunteer your home. Tickets are $20, but discounted to $15 if you buy your ticket at the September or October PSCA general meetings. On-site sales will happen at Columbus Square recreation center, and most likely B2s and/or Benna’s. The after-party will take place at South Philly Bar & Grille. Need volunteers to sell tickets or housesit for short two-to-three hour shifts on the day of the event.
      9. Zoning: Tina Geary discussed the role of PSCA as a registered community organization, which is a new designation that will allow for better communication between the city and the civic association, and more advanced notice of zoning cases. Zoning committee meetings are held the second Tuesday of the month. Pending September cases include:

i.      1224 Alter Street Construction of 4-story single family dwelling with garage, roof deck, and 2nd and 3rd floor balconies at the front and rear.  Located in C-3 Commercial.  Refused for use as a single family dwelling in a commercial district, and open area (required 25%- proposed 9%).  The garage requires a certificate from the ZBA.

ii.      920 Washington Ave Legalization of existing parking spaces (22+1 HC Accessible space) accessory to one story commercial structure.  Strip Mall located in C7 Commercial district.  Refused for required landscape buffer (none proposed), % of landscaping, and requirement for HC space along Washington Ave.  (none proposed in front parking area)

iii.      1218 Gerritt Street Construction of 3rd story addition to an existing single family structure.  Located in R-10A district.  Refused for open area (required 30%- proposed 24%).

iv.      1544 S. 13th Street Construction of a Roof Deck and Pilot House.  Located in R-10A.  Refused for size of pilot house. (max allowable 48sf- proposed 77sf).

v.      Joint Civic case (will be held at the South Broad Street Neighbors zoning meeting on the third Tuesday of September at Methodist Hospital): 1303 S. Broad Street Construction of decks at 2nd and 3rd Floor Rear.  Construction of additional Roof Deck on 3rd Floor roof for use by 4th Floor apartment.  This building is currently used as a 5-family dwelling and they are requesting an additional apartment in this application for a total of 6 units.  Located in R-10A district.  Refused for use as a 6-family dwelling

      1. Town Watch: Next walk is September 8 at 11am at Police Station at 11th and Wharton. Ace Delgado from the Police Department gave tips on securing one’s home and belongings and mentioned some recent house break-ins where thieves entered through the back of the house. He recommended that homeowners put their address on the back of their house as well, so neighbors in the back know how to identify the house to police if they see a break-in in progress. Ace also recommended more motion-activated lights for the front and back of homes. Ace also said the Police Department is trying to set up more training sessions for town watch volunteers. In addition, the Police will be sponsoring a Peace Day on September 21, look for more information on this soon.
  1. 3.      Presentations
    1. Neighborhood Ambassador Program (NAP):  Angel D’Ippolito presented an overview and gave out a brochure regarding the new NAP, which will replace the former Block Liaison program. PSCA is looking for volunteers to become Ambassadors and represent a smaller sub-area within our larger neighborhood. Eight initial sectors/subregions were identified. With Outreach Committee members Sarah Anton, Chris DiCapua, and Ilene Wilder, a discussion was held on the various responsibilities and tasks of the Ambassadors, such as distributing information, encouraging neighbors to attend PSCA meetings, organizing events within your immediate neighborhood, and reporting yearly to the general membership on micro issues within your sector.


–Submitted by Karin Morris, PSCA Secretary, September 5, 2012.

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