The Porch Press

Serving the Historic Atlanta Neighborhoods of Grant Park, Ormewood Park, East Atlanta, Benteen Park, Glenwood Park, and environs

Notes on Neighborhood: July 2011

May 10th, 2011 EACA Meeting

7:05 p.m. Meeting called to order

Public Safety Report

Police Report – Sergeant Bruins, Zone 6, Atlanta Police Department

  • Introduction of visiting officers
  • It’s getting hot and a lot of people are stealing AC units or copper from them

Henry Bryant, BATL

  • Last fall BATL applied for a grant to restore the only two battlefield monuments in the city
  • We have just heard that we have been granted money to start the process of restoration
  • The first step is planning and assessment of the monuments
  • We will have a plan of restoration within the year
  • July 15th we have a fundraiser gala at the East Lake Golf Club
  • There will be dinner and entertainment
  • Tickets will be available for $40 to EACA members at a discount of $10 per ticket
  • Tickets will be sold before June 1st to take advantage of the discount
  • Volunteers are needed during the day of the event on Saturday, July 16th
  • We have things that need to be set up and moved around the day of the event
  • Living history is going on that day and if you are able we would love you to participate in the character sketches performed live
  • Please let me know if you would like to participat
  • Pete the Cat and Abraham Lincoln will be joining us in costume the day of the event

Lynne Bryant, East Atlanta Library

  • We are in the process of hiring a children’s librarian

Committee Reports

Mary Yetter, Parks and Greenspace

  • We are expanding the community garden
  • We have had Tony Sharko, a professional stonemason, volunteering his time
  • We have been getting more and more community members joining the garden
  • We are working on the second phase of the stream restoration

Ed Gilgor, NPU-W Chairperson/Public Safety Committee Co-Chair/EABF

  • EABF will be held on May 21st in Brownwood Park from 12-8 pm
  • Various streets surrounding the park will be closed during the festival and any residents and their guests living in the area will be let in accordingly
  • You can go to www.eabfonline.com
    to purchase tickets
  • I recommend you call 911 in the event you see any items that are suspicious
  • If you are not sure it’s an emergency, please call because you could be helping
  • Because of cell phone signals, when you call 911 in East Atlanta, you may be directed to DeKalb Co, in order to avoid this, program 404-658-6666 will put you directly into the East Atlanta zone
  • Burglar Alarms, Strike plates, and dogs are good ways to deter crime
  • There is a list of these items on the Safe Atlanta website

Kevin Spiegner, Beautification Committee

  • We will begin the Yard of the Month award this May
  • Qualifications will be listed in the EACA newsletter
  • There are three ways you can nominate a yard: send nominations along with
    a photo to beautification@eaca.net;
    there will be a ballot box at Joe’s Coffee Shop and possibly the library
  • Winners will receive a $50 gift certificate from Lowe’s
  • We will be judging via the Beautification Advisory Board members
  • The Beer Festival is coming up on May 21st so we would like the village to look nice
  • We are having a spruce up day this Sunday, May 15th at 10:00 am
  • Meet up at Joe’s Coffee Shop

Jack Gruendler, Transportation Chairperson

  • As you know we are working on several projects
  • Our regional round table of leaders will be narrowing down
  • Please go to www.surveymonkey.com/s/6bh86n to take a survey about the projects that you would like to see concentrated on
  • This link will be listed in the EACA newsletter as well

Andy Schneggenburger, Land Use and Zoning

Steve Norman and Ron Lall, SAND

  • If you would like to contact us about land use and zoning, please email us at landuse@eaca.net
  • We will add this information in the agenda at future meetings
  • We are continuing to review changes needed to be made to our neighborhood ordinances through convening a committee of EACA, SAND, and EABA members

Steve Norman, President – SAND

  • We are actively seeking to get a Quick Trip into our community
  • We are working on making sure that the Moreland Ave corridor be developed into a meaningful area for our community

Ron Lall, Chairperson – SAND

  • As you know we passed several resolutions last meeting related to the Moreland Ave corridor
  • Review of map and site where the proposed Quick Trip gas station is located
  • Review of the subdivision re-plat that was passed to make the Quick Trip available
  • As we discussed at last meeting, the subdivision re-plat was done to side-step city requirements of a 100-foot setback for gas stations

Has the planning committee made an attempt to work with QuikTrip on the design of the entrances and exits on and off Moreland?

  • We have met with the QuikTrip real estate manager to discuss the challenges with the proposed parcel verses other parcels on Moreland Avenue that would be better serving for the community
  • The residents in the area are willing to talk with QuikTrip in order to accommodate/address the space and sizing issues
  • GDOT is not in favor of curb cuts on state routes
  • QuikTrip has been asked to do a traffic movement study to see how much traffic is coming and going through the surrounding intersections
  • That study will answer questions like: Do we need to have a dedicated left turn lane on Ormewood? Can a curb cut on Moreland Ave be accommodated?

Are these issues with traffic movement associated with the QuikTrip issues for future developments as well?

  • Gas stations have a lot more traffic in and out than other businesses
  • We are trying to get data on comparable locations of other QuikTrips
  • This location is a new foot print for QuikTrip

What would be the difference with other locations being discussed for the QuikTrip?

  • Access, ingress, and egress as well as residential setback
  • QuikTrip is evaluating this location as well as others in order to make a balanced decision

Do they have temporary parking spaces marked off for the customers?

  • There are 35 spaces allotted for temporary customers

Is QuikTrip working with the community?

  • Yes, they are communicating well with the community
  • SAND believes QuikTrip is a great company but this is a bad location
  • There are several initiatives that have begun that support this via Facebook, etc.
  • We also believe the city needs to address the issues that are related to re-platting for commercial zones
  • Review of information as to why we do not support QT at the proposed location
  • Main issues are the traffic and safety items

Motion that EACA collaborate with and partner with SouthStar CDC and SAND in the effort to work with QT to identify and secure an alternative business location in the Moreland corridor

  • Second
  • All in favor: 16
  • All opposed: 1
  • All Abstaining: 4
  • Motion to pass

Motion for EACA to work with SouthStar CDC and SAND to lobby the City administration to act on the zoning recommendations in the LCI report, which was approved in 2008

  • Second
  • All in favor: 20
  • All opposed: 2
  • All Abstaining: 1
  • Motion to pass

Andy Schneggenberger, BeltLine information

If anyone knows anyone that is looking to buy a house near the BeltLine, there
is a significant amount of financial assistance with the down payment available

Announcements and Approval of March Minutes

Lewis Cartee, Vice President EACA

  • Burger Booth Beer Festival volunteers are filled up

Motion to approve April EACA minutes

  • Second
  • All in favor
  • Motion to pass unanimously

8:24 p.m. Meeting Adjourned

GPNA Meeting Minutes May 2011

By Laurie Baggett

Meeting called to order, at 7:39 pm with President Russell Baggett presiding. He reviewed meeting conduct, especially regarding holding comments not pertaining directly to agenda items until Open Forum at the end of the meeting, and a drawing for a raffle for New Neighbors. He thanked Zoo Atlanta for use of their space. The next GPNA meeting is 6/21/11. He introduced 6 new members, and welcomed the 36 in attendance. The Dig The Divewell campaign was a success, as well as the Grant Park Farmer’s Market.

For the good of the order, he noted that a member last meeting physically threw a rubber snake at him, which is considered unacceptable behavior. He opened up the floor and Rick Hudson made a motion to censure member Steve Carr in all meetings of the body and in committee meetings until January 1, 1212 based on the following acts of misconduct:

  • Accosting the administrative assistant at 344 Woodward Avenue SE and purporting to represent the Land Use and Zoning Committee, and making the young lady scared for her safety. Telling her that their property was being discussed and they were being called before the committee; when in truth we had been communicating with the owner and the builder from early on in their project.
  • Accosting the owners at GardenHood and purporting to represent the Land Use and Zoning Committee. Telling them their property was being discussed and they were being called before the committee;when in truth I, as chair, had been working with them since before their opening to make sure they were staying in compliance with all the Zoning Code for the City of Atlanta.
  • Accosting a homeowner after the last Land Use and Zoning and Transportation Committee meeting and purporting to represent the committee, when the agreed upon action was for the Transportation and Transit Chair to contact the homeowner.
  • Asking an 11-year-old child if he knew any “cuss words” at a public meeting.
  • Constantly interrupting the meetings and speaking when not called upon or recognized by the Chair.
  • Bringing up matters that had already been handled by the association and our partners, and by going too far by physically assaulting the Chair by throwing a rubber snake at him at the last meeting.

The motion was properly seconded and floor was opened for discussion. Member Steve Carr made an out-of-turn comment in his defense. A motion of point to order was made and properly seconded. Chris Newman called a question to define “censure.” Censure was defined according to Robert’s Rules as, technically, a warning regarding specific acts like not speaking out of turn or on point of discussion in body and committee meetings. 21 voted in favor, none opposed, 1 abstained.

Vice President Lauren Rocereta said committee volunteers are needed for Tour of Homes, Mothball and New Neighbor’s packets. She passed out committee signup sheets and updated the Neighborhood Watch program – block captain volunteers contact her or Michael Connelly. Chris Balch reviewed the Bylaws update. A motion was made to approve Bylaws, was seconded and approved, with one nay, none abstained. Chris Newman acknowledged Chris Balch for his hard work.

Secretary Laurie Baggett stated that last month’s meeting minutes were on Facebook, published in the Porch Press, and are in front for review.

Treasurer Michele Botwinick updated the accounts. Friends of Grant Park Pool and Grant Park Parents’ Network fall under GPNA’s 501- 3C and all donations are welcome and tax deductible.

Public Safety Committee Chair Chris Newman introduced Lieutenant Browning from
Zone 3. She reviewed two robberies last month, one on Berne Street involving
college students, and the other a carjacking at the Hill Street Shell Station.
Property crimes are up including 9 burglaries and 28 vehicular larcenies, especially
in the restaurant district. Copper pipes are being stolen. Report graffiti to
the new Graffiti Task Force at graffiti@atlantaga.gov.
The phone number is on the Facebook page.

Economic Development Committee Chair Jeff Rogers said fund raising volunteers are needed, especially in order for the Mothball to take place this year. Yard signs and car decals are available.

Education and Children’s Issues Committee Chair Meg Boeff discussed upcoming
activities, including fund raising and free social events, which can be found
at ed@gpna.org or on Facebook. The GPNA yard
sale is in the fall. A Summer Reading kickoff with the Georgia Public Library
is Saturday, 6/4/11 at 11:00 am – the Braves will attend this event!

Historic Committee Chair Paul Simo was not present. Battle of Atlanta event needs volunteers.

Land Use and Zoning Committee Chair said next committee meeting is Thursday 6/2/11 at Zoo Atlanta’s Tech Lab. 2 public parks have opened along the Beltine Park System, and on 6/11 the skateboard park opens.

Parks and Recreation Committee Chair Sharon Jenkins addressed the GP Farmer’s Market’s grand opening success. The next committee meeting is 6/4/11 at 3:00 pm at the new Recreation Center.

Technology Committee Chair Stephanie Warner was not present. Lauren Rocereta asked members to click like and comment on our Facebook page, and visit gpna.org.

Transportation Committee Chair Louie Ingall said the next meeting is Thursday, 6/2/11 in conjunction with Land Use and Zoning. The local group PEDS is focused on pedestrian hazards – contact them to address the walkability of our neighborhood.

New member giveaway was presented – Congratulations!

Open Forum:

  • New business: Rick Hudson, LUZ Chair said on next committee meeting’s agenda is an application received for review of new business in the Jane and he will be bringing immediate neighbors’ involvement into the process. Chris Newman, Public Safety Chair, said two pedestrian burglaries at gunpoint occurred this week, one on Ormewood Avenue at 10 pm and one on Memorial Drive at Cherokee Avenue at 2 am. At the new Montessori school, car break-ins occur in the morning. Thanks directed to all involved with the GP Farmer’s Market. Sunbursts are for sale and available tonight.
  • Mark Doraville discussed the 4th annual HVCU 5K run on Saturday, 6/25 at 7:30 am Register at HVCUalumniatlanta.com. The race starts at the Pavilion and goes inside Grant Park until 11:30 am. A motion was made to support the event, was properly seconded and unanimously approved.
  • Carolyn McLaughlin with Atlanta Preservation Center passed out information about a book signing event for Phil and Jennifer Cuthbertson’s book, Historic
    Grant Park
    , on Saturday 5/21 from 4-7 pm at the L.P. Grant Mansion on
    327 St. Paul Avenue. Proceeds from the book have been pledged towards restoration of the Mansion!
  • Jeremy said an adult softball league pickup game is this Sunday at 4 pm on the field. Information at Grant Park Softball on Facebook.
  • Park Avenue Church Pastor Tony Lankford said please come on Sunday, 6/5 at 11 am to an event celebrating the church’s 141st anniversary.
  • Rick Hudson said the Brew at the Zoo event is 5/28, and made a motion to approve minutes from last month’s meeting. Motion seconded and unanimously approved.

8:51 pm motion to adjourn unanimously approved.

SEABA Updates

By Ashley McCartney

This month, SEABA was proud to be in attendance at the 128th birthday celebration for Grant Park, hosted by the Grant Park Conservancy at the Grant Park Pavilions. There are so many wonderful volunteers in our community and it was great to hear about the accomplishments of the Grant Park Conservancy. In SEABAland, we believe that the accomplishments in our community directly impact our businesses. Thanks to the Grant Park Conservancy for keeping our community beautiful and a desirable place to do business!

Our next Soiree will be held on June 16, 2011 from 5:30 p.m. until 7:15 p.m. at AGAVE! This has historically been one of the best events of the year. Come enjoy some eats and drinks and meet other business owners and entrepreneurs in the neighborhood. This is where deals get started, so don’t forget your business cards!

On June 31, 2011, Zoo Atlanta will host our quarterly SEABA business luncheon
from noon to 1:15. Our guest speaker, Steven Brown of Transworld Systems, will
be giving a presentation entitled “Ten Tips for Maximizing Cash Flow.” Now isn’t
that something we are all interested in? Please RSVP to ashmccartney@gmail.com
no later than June 23, 2011 to reserve your spot. The cost to attend this
event is $12.00.

Please check the SEABA website at www.seabaga.org
for information about our new membership guidelines, committee leaders, membership
benefits, and tactical and strategic plans for 2011-2012. If you would like
to be on our mailing list or know more about our organization just send an email
to ashmccartney@gmail.com and we’ll
get back to you. We are also now on Facebook.

SEABA (South East Atlanta Business Association) was created through the merger of the Reynoldstown/Cabbagetown Business Association and the Grant Park Merchants Association in 2006. Our most important goals are to strengthen and grow the business community and enhance the quality of life for all residents. SEABA is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit corporation operated by volunteers.

SAND May 11, 2011 Meeting Minutes and Notes

By Sandy Lee, Vice President

Meeting called to order by president Steve Norman.

MINUTES:

  • Brian Regienczuk was confirmed as Communications Committee Chair with no objections.
  • Land Use and Zoning: the committee did not consider the Beulah Heights rezoning but deferred it to SAND. A motion to approve the new plan was made and seconded from the floor. The vote to approve the revised plan was 37-0.
  • The minutes from the previous meeting on April 14, 2011, were approved without objection.

NOTES:

Public Safety: APD Zone 6: Major Dalton reported:

  • Burglaries are down 60% in Beat 609.
  • There were two serious incidents in the past week involving robberies on Garrett St. and Custer Ave. Neither victim was physically harmed.

Announcements:

  • Lisa Roberson reported on the success of the electronics and paint recycling efforts on Earth Day. This effort was sponsored by Councilmember Carla Smith. New paint for graffiti removal was provided as part of the event.
  • The Brownwood Bike Rally and Run will take place May 14 in Brownwood Park.
  • The 8th Annual East Atlanta Beer Festival takes place May 21 in Brownwood Park.
  • Graffiti removal efforts now have new paint supplies to use. Storage space for supplies is needed. Neighbors should take pictures of locations needing graffiti removal and email them to president@sandatlanta.org.

The Southeast Atlanta Communities for Schools will host a meet and greet on May 14 from 4-6 pm at 1418 Metropolitan Ave.

Transportation: Bob Titus reported.

  • The Moreland/Glenwood realignment project is moving forward with engineering assessments. The City found matching funds needed for the project.
  • A survey is posted on the G-DOT website regarding the transportation projects proposed for the T-SPLOST funding initiative.

Communications: Brian Regienczuk was confirmed as Communications Committee Chair with no objections.

Tax Appeals: John Clark explained new law changes for 2011. These are posted on the SAND website with his email address and phone number. SAND neighbors may call with questions. This year there were 50 law changes.

  • One requires notices of assessment be mailed to property owners each year and gives all owners the right to appeal. The deadline for appeals is June 21.
  • Another new law limits the maximum assessment to the most recent sales price.
  • A 2009 moratorium on tax increases will expire in 2012. We can expect the county to increase rates at that time. An appeal will freeze assessment increases for three years.

The appeal process was explained and the methods needed to prepare for a Board of Equalization hearing. The temporary tax bill issued must be paid as usual. The BOE has 180 days to accept or reject the appeal. Sometimes it takes a year.

Land Use and Zoning: The Beulah Heights University student housing rezoning was referred to a special committee which met several times. Peter Karanja, Beulah Heights Director of Public Relations, and Mike Haponski, Civil Engineer of Ridgeland Planning, were present to address questions.

  • The development plan was explained and concerns raised by neighbors regarding stormwater runoff were resolved. BHU is bearing the costs of the stormwater catchment system.
  • Construction of the new homes for students will take place within the next year. The NPU vote on rezoning will take place at the meeting on May 25. Landscaping and tree plans were also discussed. A motion was made and seconded to recommend approval for the rezoning plan. The motion passed by a vote of 37-0.

SAND Development: The lawyer retained by SAND to address concerns for the QuikTrip development proposal is awaiting response from City attorneys on the questions he has raised. A response is expected soon. The project was explained and residents referred to the website for more information.

  • EACA voted to support SAND in its opposition to the proposed location. Southstar CDC and the Atlanta Neighborhood Charter School also wrote a letter supporting SAND’s position.
  • Information will be posted on a Facebook page and on SAND’s website.
  • So far 250 flyers have been distributed, over 100 letters signed, and almost 300 “likes” posted on the Facebook page. Residents are urged to sign up for email updates.
  • There has also been some media interest in the story. Residents are asked to email photos of the neighborhood that demonstrate the normal walkable nature.
  • Neighbors will be meeting at the Roberson residence at 1:00pm on Sunday and distributing more flyers. Fundraising help is also needed.

All neighbors were reminded to be positive. QT is a good company, but has selected a bad location. The proposed location is within 6 feet of residential property.

Meeting sponsor: Park Pet Supply provided a gift certificate for the drawing.

Minutes approved: The minutes from the previous meeting were unanimously approved.

Adjourned: The meeting adjourned at 9:00pm.

Leave a Reply