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MRIA Meetings:
Minutes 2005
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Meeting_date: November 1, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

Minutes of November 1, 2005 Board Meeting Officers and Board Members present: David Rocah, John Kyle, Polly Duke, Perry Cooper, Penny Catzen, Ashley Chertkof, Dolph Druckman, Doug Kelso, Mike Molla, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Carrie Cass, Mare Consugar, Kyle Cunningham, Henri Daniels, Charlie Duff, Linda Rittelmann, Michael Rynd, Karen Helm, Charles Holman, Tim Ingles, Julie McArthur, Dahlia Woody President David Rocah called the meeting to order at 8:05 p.m. The October minutes were accepted as corrected. In the police report, Sgt. Hess listed three robberies, two burglaries, and six stolen autos during the previous month. He also announced a neighborhood meeting featuring the Juvenile Court Master at the Brown Center November 10. Mike Molla gave a slide presentation explaining plans for the new MICA building to be built at Mt. Royal and North Avenues. After some questions and discussion concerning zoning, a motion was made and seconded to give MRIA approval to the plans. The motion carried 16-1. Because of the lengthy presentation, committee meetings were postponed till the December meeting. David Rocah asked for a plan of work from each committee to be reported at the December meeting. David Rocah announced that Julie Thorne was elected an at-large board member for Midtown Benefits District. The meeting was adjourned at 9:15. Agenda, December 6 meeting 1. Call to order. 2. Approval of November minutes 3. Police report 4. MRIA financial report 5. Committee reports 6. New business


Meeting_date: Dec. 6 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

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Minutes of December 2005 MRIA Board Meeting Officers and Board members present: David Rocah, John Kyle, Polly Dyke, Barry Blumberg, Perry Cooper, Patsy Andrews, Penny Catzen, Dolph Druckman, Johns Hopkins, Doug Kelso, Mike Molla, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Mare Consugar, Kyle Cunningham, Charlie Duff, Michael Rynd, Sarah Cross, Charles Holman, Julie McArthur. The November minutes were approved. Sgt. Hess made his report. Two assaults and robbery, one burglary, one stolen car. The police department has been working with MICA and the noisy students, complaints seem to be less. The police have a new web site www.baltimorepolice.org Committees met during the regular meeting time. All committees are to report back at the January meeting with a plan of action Financial Report. B. Blumberg presented his report. The 10/31 report reflected the sound financial position of the organization, which is typical as most of the income is earned in the first half of the year and most the expenses occur in the second half of the year. Barry also presented the status of the restricted funds – Total $8,311.29 and the Bolton Hill Fund held at Midtown Benefits District Total $13,273.81 Meeting adjourned at 9:30 (Thanks to Polly Duke for taking the minutes.)


Meeting_date: September, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

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Mount Royal Improvement Association Board of Directors Meeting, September 7, 2005 Minutes Board attendance: Patsy Andrews, Penny Catzen, Ashley Chertkof, Dolph Druckman, Johns Hopkins, Doug Kelso, Mike Molla, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Kyle Cunningham, Henri Daniels, Polly Duke, Stacey Kargman-Kaye, Michael Rynd, Sarah Cross, Karen Helm, Charles Holman, Tim Ingles, Joe Libercci. President David Rocah called the meeting to order with the remark that the Board will try to follow Robert’s Rules of Order. He asked that agenda items, including written material, be submitted to him early. The minutes of the June, 2005 meeting were approved as written. Polly Duke, Nominating Committee Chair, moved to elect the following nominees for Board positions: Charlie Duff and Betsy Boykin for terms ending in 2007 and Yolanda Takeysian for a term ending in 2008. Sgt. Hess reported fewer cases of auto larceny and vandalism than the previous month. He urges citizens to call 911 to report excessive noise, unruly behavior. The Police/Community Council regularly meets on the fourth Wednesday; this month the meeting is September 28 at MICA’s main building. A representative from the Liquor Board will speak. The October meeting will feature a speaker from the juvenile court system. Peter Merles, newly hired Executive Director of Midtown Benefits District was introduced. Treasurer Barry Blumberg gave the first quarterly financial report, which was accepted for auditing purposes. Tim Ingles and Yolanda Takeysian reported that the MRIA ad hoc committee monitoring the State Center project is making progress, including the formation of a “super committee” including representatives from Bolton Hill, Madison Park, Marble Hill, Seton Hill, McCulloh Homes, and Mt. Vernon. Baltimore City, which has an interest in McCulloh Homes, has not yet signed on to the project. The committee is planning a workshop for October 29 and a walkabout for October 22. The Architectural Review Committee submitted a written report. It was distributed as email, and copies were available at the meeting. Fred Shoken added that ARC approved the installation of a fence at Memorial Apartments surrounding a space that will be used as a children’s playground. President David Rocah reported on MRIA activities during the summer. The following letters were sent: To Baltimore Planning Commission Re: Mt. Vernon Urban Renewal Plan opposing proposed height limits and the provision that provides the Planning Commission with authority to waive the plan’s requirements; to Councilwoman Paula Branch, Chair of Urban Affairs Committee, to oppose changes proposed by the Planning Commission which would destroy the autonomy of CHAP; to Commissioner Paul Graziano of The Department of Housing and Community Development opposing the demolition of the Rochambeau Apartments. Also more work needs to be done to assure implementation of and enforcement of modified traffic patterns in Bolton Hill during Artscape. MRIA requested the removal of certain bus stops on Eutaw Place, but this has not occurred. The committee, headed by Suzanne Brockman, is still pursuing this. The Midtown Community Benefits District has a new Director, Peter Merles. The issue of outsourcing cleaning services is on indefinite hold. Donna Beth Joy Shapiro moved to change the October meeting to the second Tuesday to avoid conflict with Rosh Hashanah. The motion passed. In New Business, Charlie Duff reminded those present that it is time to send in nominations for Midtown Development Awards. Donna Beth Joy Shapiro asked for volunteers to distribute flyers for the October 1 yard sale. Barry Blumberg responded to a question about the sale of the Synagogue in the 1300 block of Bolton Street. The property has been sold to a family that will remodel it to serve as their residence. Charles Holman, Chair of the Greening Committee, said he would be a recruiting member for his committee. David Rocah said there is still a need for someone to chair a Problem Properties committee. The meeting was adjourned at 9:30.


Meeting_date: June 7, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

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Mount Royal Improvement Association Board of Directors Meeting June 7, 2005 Minutes Attendance: Perry Cooper, David Rocah, Barry Blumberg, Dan Gilbert, Patsy Andrews, Penny Catzen, Dolph Druckman, Keiffer Mitchell, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Carrie Cass, Mare Consugar, Kyle Cunningham, Henri Daniels, Michael Rynd, Suzanne Brockman, Karen Helm, Tim Ingles, George Lavdas, Joe Libercci, Dahlia Woody President David Rocah called the meeting to order and welcomed all in attendance. He stressed the importance for all MRIA Board members to attend the Board retreat on June 27 at 7:30 p.m. at MICA. Sgt. Hess reported that overall crime in the city is up 4%, but is down in the Central District. A juvenile has been arrested, so recent car vandalism and broken windows may cease. Sgt. Hess invites citizens to call him at 410-727-5480. Ms. Murphy and Tawanna Kane gave an informational report on Mt. Royal Recreation Center located in School 66. The Center has a 7-week camp program in progress, can offer meeting space, offers computer lab, sports, and SAT tutoring. Ms. Murphy brought descriptive materials to share and asked MRIA members to let her know if there are programs we need, and she especially asked if we know of people who could provide talent for new classes. Treasurer Barry Blumberg gave the financial report. It was approved by the Board. Minutes of the May 3, 2005 MRIA Annual Meeting were approved. Keiffer Mitchell provided update on Baltimore City budget. It has passed second reading. There is a 2% property tax reduction this year and next year. Tree trimming in Bolton Hill is included. Final passage is slated for June 13. The next big issue is city financing of a convention hotel. Melvin Stukes presented MTA's Greater Baltimore Bus Initiative (GBBI) with proposed bus service changes. One proposal is to combine #5 and #91. This would remove long-standing concerns regarding bus stops on Eutaw because no bus would run on Eutaw. Compliance issues regarding use by the disabled affect shutting down bus stops. The law requires a bus study (temporary and permanent disabilities and visible and not visible disabilities). Input from the community is required, not just from the community association, according to Mr. Stukes. This may include door-to-door canvassing, especially at homes nearest the affected stops. October 16 is the target date for implementation. Information is available at www.mtamaryland.com and click on GBBI. Discussion centered on Rte. 91 (Eutaw), #5 (Druid Hill) and #7(Pennsylvania Ave.). These three serve the same corridor. What about eliminating #9 and #7 and then have #5 make a loop to serve Eutaw and McMechen? Motion to support elimination of #91 (made by Charlie Duff and seconded by Tim Ingles) with caveat to provide stops on Eutaw at Wilson and at McMechen. Discussion issues: focus on stops, not routes, use mobility buses for folks on Eutaw (not enough currently). Is #91 used by residents of Memorial Apartments or Marlborough? Mr. Stukes promised to include nursing home employees, community center, Marlborough and Memorial in determination in MTA survey. Other items of discussion are that bus traffic causes vibrations to homes, frequency of use is low. If Park Avenue decision of several years ago is any measure, various lines have support; e.g., from Marble Hill. This motion passed 8-7. A motion was made to withdraw previous motion and substitute with “MRIA takes no position with respect to elimination of bus routes and expresses various concerns on both sides of the issue.” This motion passed 13-1. Tim Ingles presented a written report on the State Center development. Perry Cooper provided an update re: Midtown. There are 35-40 applicants for the Director’s position. Outsourcing bids are due; a community meeting will be held if the Midtown Board desires to move ahead with outsourcing. Announcements: Artscape is July 22-24; MRIA crab feast for public safety officers is August 11; the Upton/Marble Hill house tour is June 11; Perry Cooper requested ideas for material to be included in a community wide newsletter. A motion that MRIA oppose the demolition of Rochambeau building passed. Since it appears that the latest effort to buy and renovate the Jentry McDonald property has stalled and evaporated, is there an opportunity for Midtown Development Corporation to act? Barry Blumberg moved that MRIA oppose the plan that would allow buildings up to 23 stories in Mt. Vernon, contingent upon request from Mt. Vernon Belvedere Association. Tim Ingles seconded. The motion was withdrawn. There is no update on Bolton Hill urban renewal plan. The meeting was adjourned.


Meeting_date: May 3, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

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Minutes of Annual Meeting of MRIA, May 3, 2005 Officers and Board Members in attendance: Perry Cooper, David Rocah, Polly Duke, Barry Blumberg, Dan Gilbert, Greg Baranoski, Neal Friedlander, Joe Libercci, Roger Marks, Steve Sisson, Chris Taylor, Patsy Andrews, Ashley Chertkof, Dolph Druckman, Doug Kelso, Keiffer Mitchell, Mike Molla, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Carrie Cass, Mare Consugar, Kyle Cunningham, Henri Daniels, Stacey Kaye, John Kyle, Michael Rynd. President Perry Cooper called the meeting to order following a social hour. The April minutes were approved as corrected. Treasurer Barry Blumberg gave a preliminary FY 2005 report. Not all bills are in for the fiscal year, which ends April 30. He reported total unrestricted funds of $28,937.09 and restricted funds at $5,960.07. Restricted funds are designated for crab feast, tree fund, planning fund, greening project fund, website/computer salary fund. Polly Duke moved to increase MRIA dues by $10 in each category. The motion passed 15-9. After lengthy discussion, a motion was made to have the dues application/renewal form include an additional category for those 65 or older who can choose to reduce their dues by $10. This applies to all levels. This motion passed 16-5. Perry Cooper and Rusty Carbaugh, President of Midtown Benefits District, gave an update on ongoing changes at Midtown. Ellen Richardson, President of the Bolton Hill Garden Club, announced that the club will honor residents who have the best window boxes and/or tree wells. Judging will be on an undisclosed date in June. There was discussion relating to banner ads on the website. Doreen Rosenthal moved to let Dolph Druckman, webmaster, handle the issue rather than having MRIA set a policy. John Kyle moved to table the discussion till the next meeting. The following Officers and Board Members were elected unanimously: David Rocah, President, John Kyle, 1st Vice President; Polly Duke, 2nd Vice President, Barry Blumberg, Treasurer: Board Members whose terms expire in 2008—Dahlia Woody, Karen Helm, Sarah Cross, George Lavdas, Tim Ingles, Julie McArthur, Joe Libercci, Suzanne Brockman. Perry Cooper gave the State of the Neighborhood Address and presented the following awards: Tim Ingles for keeping Bolton Hill informed and involved in the State Center Transit Oriented Development project; Mike Duke, Larry Jordan, Kevin Divers, Leroy (Butch) Bey, and Clarence Johnson of the Midtown Safe and Clean crew. Also Charles Smith, Executive Director of Midtown Development District and Linda Richardson, Deputy Director. Patsy Andrews was recognized for organizing resident parking program; Carrie Cass for plantings in Sumpter Park and Charles Holman for plantings in the median of the 1600 block of Park Avenue; Donna Beth Joy Shapiro and Fred Shoken for dedication and commitment to MRIA and Bolton Hill. The meeting was adjourned at 9:55 p.m.


Meeting_date: May 3, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

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Minutes of Annual Meeting of MRIA, May 3, 2005 Officers and Board Members in attendance: Perry Cooper, David Rocah, Polly Duke, Barry Blumberg, Dan Gilbert, Greg Baranoski, Neal Friedlander, Joe Libercci, Roger Marks, Steve Sisson, Chris Taylor, Patsy Andrews, Ashley Chertkof, Dolph Druckman, Doug Kelso, Keiffer Mitchell, Mike Molla, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Carrie Cass, Mare Consugar, Kyle Cunningham, Henri Daniels, Stacey Kaye, John Kyle, Michael Rynd. President Perry Cooper called the meeting to order following a social hour. The April minutes were approved as corrected. Treasurer Barry Blumberg gave a preliminary FY 2005 report. Not all bills are in for the fiscal year, which ends April 30. He reported total unrestricted funds of $28,937.09 and restricted funds at $5,960.07. Restricted funds are designated for crab feast, tree fund, planning fund, greening project fund, website/computer salary fund. Polly Duke moved to increase MRIA dues by $10 in each category. The motion passed 15-9. After lengthy discussion, a motion was made to have the dues application/renewal form include an additional category for those 65 or older who can choose to reduce their dues by $10. This applies to all levels. This motion passed 16-5. Perry Cooper and Rusty Carbaugh, President of Midtown Benefits District, gave an update on ongoing changes at Midtown. Ellen Richardson, President of the Bolton Hill Garden Club, announced that the club will honor residents who have the best window boxes and/or tree wells. Judging will be on an undisclosed date in June. There was discussion relating to banner ads on the website. Doreen Rosenthal moved to let Dolph Druckman, webmaster, handle the issue rather than having MRIA set a policy. John Kyle moved to table the discussion till the next meeting. The following Officers and Board Members were elected unanimously: David Rocah, President, John Kyle, 1st Vice President; Polly Duke, 2nd Vice President, Barry Blumberg, Treasurer: Board Members whose terms expire in 2008—Dahlia Woody, Karen Helm, Sarah Cross, George Lavdas, Tim Ingles, Julie McArthur, Joe Libercci, Suzanne Brockman. Perry Cooper gave the State of the Neighborhood Address and presented the following awards: Tim Ingles for keeping Bolton Hill informed and involved in the State Center Transit Oriented Development project; Mike Duke, Larry Jordan, Kevin Divers, Leroy (Butch) Bey, and Clarence Johnson of the Midtown Safe and Clean crew. Also Charles Smith, Executive Director of Midtown Development District and Linda Richardson, Deputy Director. Patsy Andrews was recognized for organizing resident parking program; Carrie Cass for plantings in Sumpter Park and Charles Holman for plantings in the median of the 1600 block of Park Avenue; Donna Beth Joy Shapiro and Fred Shoken for dedication and commitment to MRIA and Bolton Hill. The meeting was adjourned at 9:55 p.m.


Meeting_date: April 8
Posted_by: Clare Barkley

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Minutes of April 8, 2005, MRIA Meeting Officers and Board Members attending: Perry Cooper, David Rocah, Polly Duke, Greg Baranoski, George Lavdas, Tod Myers Lottie Shivers, Chris Taylor, Patsy Andrews, Penny Catzen, Dolph Druckman, Doug Kelso, Keiffer Mitchell, Mike Molla, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Carrie Cass, Henri Daniels, John Kyle, Michael Rynd. President Perry Cooper called the meeting to order at 8:15. Sgt. Hess reported three robberies in Bolton Hill and announced the Community Relations meeting to be held at 6:30 p.m. April 27 at the MICA Train Station. Rusty Carbaugh, President of Midtown Benefits District, said the new budget will be on the website. Proposals for privatization of services provided by Midtown will be discussed by the May meeting. Developers of 1212-1214 Eutaw Place presented plans for 10 units, with one parking space per unit, enclosed parking, and enclosed trash bins. The Board voted to support a zoning variance from 8 to 10 units, contingent on handling of parking and trash as described. Carrie Cass, Chair of the Zoning Committee, reported that MRIA sent a letter to the Zoning Committee stating approval for the installation of a microwave dish on the roof of the Marlborough Apartments. Patsy Andrews reported that the requests for increased parking passes were approved (7-4) by a vote of the Board by electronic means. All new passes have restricted hours. Tim Ingles announced a meeting with the representatives of the Maryland Transportation Department, the Maryland Office of Real Estate, and City Planners to be held April 16 at Brown Memorial Church. Polly Duke, Chair of the Nominating Committee, listed the following nominees for Board positions to be elected at the Annual Meeting: Dahlia Woody, Karen Helm, Sarah Cross, George Lavdas, Tim Ingles, Julie MacArthur, Joe Libercci, and Suzanne Brockman. Officers nominated are David Rocah, President; John Kyle, 1st Vice President; Polly Duke, 2nd Vice President, Barry Blumberg, Treasurer. Perry Cooper read the following proposed change to the by-laws: Add to Article III, Section 1. Board of Directors, “All Directors must be members in good standing. The expression ‘in good standing’ shall mean those Members whose annual dues have been paid at the time they are nominated, and whose annual dues shall remain paid for the duration of the Director’s tenure.” Polly Duke moved to increase MRIA annual dues $5 in each category. Tod Myers amended the motion to include an additional $5 increase the following year. The motion passed 9-5. Sallye Perrin explained the plans of Corpus Christi parish to renovate the church’s bell tower and having the bells ring at 6 a.m., noon, and 6 p.m. daily in addition to marking the quarter hour and striking on the hour from 7 a.m.-8 p.m. The bells would also sound before services at 3:55 p.m. on Saturdays and 10:25 a.m. on Sundays. At funerals, the bells will toll every 10 seconds, and at weddings, will peal as the wedding party leaves the church. Sallye Perrin announced the Bolton Hill Garden Walk to be Sunday, June 5 , 3-6 p.m. About a dozen gardens, both private and public spaces, will be featured. The walk will begin at Rutter Mill Park. Debbie Diehl is organizing a neighborhood yard sale. Participants are to remit $10 to Debbie, who will arrange advertising. A discussion of fliers that clutter doorways is tabled till next meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 9:50.


Meeting_date: March 1, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley
minutes_textMinutes of March 2005 MRIA Board Meeting President Perry Cooper called the meeting to order at 8:15 p.m. Major Sheppard, Sgt. Hess, and Officer Clark reported on general crime reduction in Bolton Hill, crediting more frequent and consistent patrols. Sgt. Hess announced that the next Community Relations Council Meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. March 23. Charles Smith, Executive Director of Midtown Benefits District, reported that Midtown will hold a town meeting at the Brown Center March 22 at 7 p.m. to consider a budget. Perry Cooper, Greg Baranoski, and Anita Walija represent Bolton Hill. Charles spoke about the possibility of outsourcing some Midtown services. He sees revenue growth at about 2 percent this year, as the recent assessments take effect the following year. In response to questions, Charles said residents can call Midtown to deal with trash on public property. It is best to call before 7 a.m. In order to complete application for Directors and Officers insurance, David Rocah will draft an anti-harassment, anti-discrimination policy, which MRIA Counsel Paul Caiola will review. This action was moved, seconded, and passed unanimously. Treasurer Barry Blumberg presented the quarterly financial report. As neighbors of the Marlborough apartments, MRIA was asked by the zoning department to comment on a request to install a microwave dish on top of the Marlborough building. There were no objections. This result was moved, seconded, and passed unanimously. Patsy Andrews, manager of District 3 parking permits, explained the distribution process and dates of pick-up in the neighborhood. She also asked the Board for opinions on increasing parking passes for the following: Bolton Hill Nursery School from 3 to 8; Brown Memorial tutors from 5 to 10; Midtown Academy from 15 to 20; Meals on Wheels from 0 to 1. A committee will study these requests. Patsy Andrews, Chair of the Education Committee, said her committee is collecting baseline information regarding schools and educational resources in the community. The committee plans to survey residents to learn what their wishes and requirements are regarding education. Presently the committee is trying to get volunteer tutors to help in the schools. Kyle Cunningham, Chair of the Neighborhood Relations Committee, said he is developing ideas for building bridges to Reservoir Hill, Madison Park, and Marble Hill. He wants to expand his committee and welcomes volunteers. Parry Cooper reported a successful new neighbors party and thanked David Rocah and Lisa Pocari for hosting. The meeting was adjourned at 9:40.


Meeting_date: February 1, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley
minutes_textMinutes of February 1, 2005, MRIA Board Meeting President Perry Cooper called the meeting to order at 8:15 p.m. In the police report, Sgt. Charles Hess announced that Major Paul Sheppard is replacing Major Skinner in the Central District. Major Skinner, promoted to Lt. Col., has moved to the Western District.. Sgt. Hess also reported three stolen cars, three burglaries, and one robbery in the neighborhood since his last report. The Police-Community Relations meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. the fourth Wednesday in February at the MICA Train Station. Alex Streubing, States Attorney, who deals with the Housing Authority and nuisance complaints, will be the speaker. Johns Hopkins explained pending legislation in City Council that would give control of CHAP to the City Planning Director, who would appoint the Executive Director with consent of the Commission. The legislation would also introduce two new seats on the Board of Directors, namely a representatives for the Baltimore Development Corporation and the Department of Housing and Community Development. Since CHAP is the only body whose mission is preservation, its core function is to act as check and balance to other city agencies. Baltimore Development Corporation and Housing---would be deciding on their own applications, thus acting in conflict with the intent of CHAP. Johns requested that MRIA send a letter opposing the legislation to Committee Chair Paula Branch and all other Council persons. He also asked Board members to send letters and emails to Council members and to attend the hearing when it is announced. It was moved and seconded to send a letter opposing the legislation. The motion passed, with Johns Hopkins and Keiffer Mitchell abstaining. Perry Cooper asked that someone attend a meeting at 5 p.m. Wednesday, February 2 to get information regarding long-term construction on North Avenue from Mt. Royal Avenue to Howard Street. Traffic slowing will affect Mt. Royal Avenue and other streets in Bolton Hill. Residential parking permits will be issued in March with 2 pick-up dates at MICA. Information will appear in the February Bolton Hill Bulletin, on BHEN, on the website, and on flyers to be distributed door to door throughout the neighborhood. Polly Duke has investigated Directors and Officers Insurance for MRIA. Perry Cooper will consult MRIA Legal Counsel Paul Caiola regarding a non-discrimination policy and other policy matters required by the insurance company. Polly moved that the Board approve spending up to $1200 per year on insurance. She agreed to table the motion. Tim Engels is heading a committee to increase awareness of Bolton Hill residents about development of the State Office Building site. Working with him are committee members M. Collins, Connie Leider, Davis Malloy, Sarah Cross, Lynn Pellaton, and ---Menafee. President Perry Cooper is recruiting chairs for Strategic Plan committees. Owners of a problem property, 211 W. Lanvale, are facing fines for work that must be done by April 1. Perry Cooper is applying for a grant from Festival on the Hill. MRIA will send a letter to Mr. Stukes at MTA requesting the removal of three bus stops on Eutaw Place. The meeting was adjourned at 9:45 p.m.


Meeting_date: January 4, 2005
Posted_by: Clare Barkley
minutes_textMinutes of January, 2005 MRIA Board Meeting Officers and Board members present: Perry Cooper, David Rocah, Polly Duke, Barry Blumberg, Dan Gilbert, Neal Friedlander, Roger Marks, Lottie Shivers, Chris Taylor, Ashley Chertkof, Doug Kelso, Keiffer Mitchell, Mike Molla, Ellen Richardson, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro, Carrie Cass, Kyle Cunningham, Henri Daniels, John Kyle, Linda Rittelmann, Michael Rynd. President Perry Cooper called the meeting to order at 8:10 p.m. The December minutes were approved as corrected. Major Skinner of the Baltimore Police Department reported that crime is down 6% overall, and violent crime is down 14%. He also reported that the motorcycle patrol is effective. Sgt. Hess announced that the community relations council will meet on the 4th Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. at the MICA train station building. Neal Friedlander presented the Long Range Plan for Bolton Hill, including historical perspective, explanation of the Plan, and projections for its implementation. The Plan, also referred to as the Strategic Plan, was posted to Board Members in November in preparation for discussion at the January meeting. Perry Cooper moved adoption of the Plan. The motion carried unanimously. Implementation of the Plan requires active participation of the Board, including chairing one of the following committees: Greening, Alleys and Footways, Architectural Review, Zoning, Institutions, Economic, Neighborhood Relations, Community Development, Security, and Education. Neal Friedlander noted a correction in the introduction of the document. The reference cited should read (Mary-Paulding Martin, The Measure of MRIA, 1978) Linda moved a vote of appreciation to Neal Friedlander for his work and presentation to the Board, as well as to the entire steering committee. The motion passed unanimously. Members of the steering committee are Neal Friedlander, Susan VanBuren, Michael Seipp, John Kyle, Michael Molla, and Bob Pellaton. Perry Cooper will send revised copy of the Strategic Plan to Board members, and will ask the webmaster to post it on the website. Treasurer Barry Blumberg gave a brief update on MRIA finances. This year’s budget includes $1,700 left for various projects and $1,000 for greening. This money has not been spent. There is also about $20,000 in the treasury, a reasonable “safety” amount, according to the Treasurer. MRIA also has around $12,000 deposited at Midtown. This is money left over from an amount MRIA paid for security in the neighborhood at an earlier time. Neal Friedman moved that the fund be re-titled from “security” to “general fund for projects.” Linda Rittelmann amended the motion to include looking into the best financial arrangement (re: putting the money into MRIA treasury or leaving it at Midtown). The amended motion passed unanimously. Polly Duke, who checked the neighborhood to determine a recommendation to SNAP for a pilot lighting project, reported that the 1800 block of Bolton Street is a likely area for improved lighting. There appears to be a resource on that block to develop a plan for sidewalk repair and tree well construction. Polly will poll the residents on the block before forwarding the recommendation to Jim Hall. A letter from Baltimore City Housing was sent to HUD requesting HUD act on the Kensett House deed restrictions that requires the property be redeveloped by July 2004 or ownership is transferred. At the suggestion of a Board member, MRIA will arrange a meeting of the Association with an authority on real estate tax assessment. Keiffer Mitchell will help arrange such a meeting tentatively set for mid-January. The new neighbor party is set for February 27. David Rocah will host. Board members are asked to bring hors d'oeuvres. MRIA was notified that a free sail opportunity is extended to Bolton Hill. Deadline to reserve is April 29; the evening sail is May 13. Several meetings are scheduled during the week of January 10-14 at the State Office Building to discuss development of state-owned property. Barry Blumberg moved that the following letter be sent to the owner and to the auctioneer of the synagogue at 1311 Bolton Street. The motion passed 8-5. Barry Blumberg and Neal Friedlander abstained. Dear Gentlemen, On behalf of the Mount Royal Improvement Association, Inc., (MRIA) which represents the Bolton Hill neighborhood where the property, 1311 Bolton Street is located, I am informing you of the position MRIA has taken with regards to its pending auction sale and potential use. The property is located in an area in which the MRIA has strongly held concerns over the adequacy of parking, and consequently it is the official position of the MRIA that any proposed use of the property which would create a burden on the now limited parking in the area will be opposed by the MRIA and Bolton Hill community. Such opposition may include supporting legal challenges to any past or current zoning authorizations, such as non-conforming use designation and/or conditional use permits, which have lapsed due to the extended period of time the structure at 1311 Bolton Street has remained vacant. I request that you consider this position as you move forward with this auction and inform any potential parties interested in purchasing the property. Sincerely yours, Perry Cooper


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