WEST PINE LACLEDE NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION
President Harold Karabell called the meeting to order at 7:04 PM.
The minutes for April’s meeting were unanimously approved as written.
Certificate of deposit value: $7,211.30
Checking account balance: $2,311.43
Savings account balance: $1,060.19
Membership dues were due in April. Renew or to sign up: westpinelaclede.com/join/
Harold thanked Lorraine for her work on the planter on West Pine at Boyle Avenue. Rejis had committed to maintain that planter but has not been keeping it up. Lorraine learned that they’ve budgeted $750 for the planter but their landscapers haven’t gotten around to it. Rejis offered to reimburse someone else to do the work, up to $750. Lorraine purchased mulch, plants, soaker hoses and other hoses and a timer and submitted receipts to Rejis for reimbursement to WPLNA who will, in turn, cut a check to her. Terry Werner suggested that we formalize this relationship in writing and Lorraine agreed to work on it. Volunteers are sought to help Lorraine maintain that planter.
Chris Kissell asked Ron Coleman to follow up on repairing the water source for the planter at Laclede at Boyle. The water was turned on but the plumbing was not repaired.
Diana thanked the city for moving the river birch trees from the median on Laclede at Newstead and replacing them with young ornamental plum trees. There are three other aging/dead plum trees on the median in need of replacement. Ron hoped that could be done in next year’s budget.
The West Pine/Boyle dog waste station has been removed.
Brightside STL kicks off “Neighbors Naturescaping” with a meeting on May 15th. This provides grants of up to $1,500 for improvements to public property (including tree lawns). More information at https://www.brightsidestl.org. Success rate for applicants is very high.
The Special Business District (SBD)was to expire in 2018 and commissioners had been promoting a new Community Improvement (CID) to replace it in 2019 at a slightly higher tax rate to continue to provide safety and security services and lighting while adding cleaning /landscaping, public infrastructure, economic development, and marketing. The CID initiative was never approved but it turns out that the SBD did not have as many limitations as originally believed and the commissioners were able to approve a renewal of the SBD with the same boundaries. In August this will be on the ballot with a simple majority required for approval. Residents are encouraged to vote for this measure to continue to improve the security, lighting and development of our neighborhood.
Despite many public forums on the SBD, there is not a high degree of civic awareness. There are plans for major publicity efforts between now and August.
The BP-Amoco station on Newstead at Laclede is on the market. A potential buyer wants to reopen as a full service gas station, reactivating the two service bays. The association welcomes this concept, however, the owner is also exploring the ideas of selling used cars from the lot and/or selling alcohol. The association does not support either of these two ideas.
Commercial tenants in the new building at Sarah and Manchester include Seoul Taco, The King and I restaurant, Takashima Records, and others.
Harold Karabell spoke with Austin Barzantny, the developer of the 4101 Laclede condos. The building is 80% sold and they expect to be totally finished within several months. They will start work on 4101 West Pine in June or July.
Mr. Roddy gave on update on issues before the current Board of Aldermen.
- The hearing on our proposed SBD was held last week and approved for an August vote.
- New stadium issue will probably be coming up for consideration again.
- Better Together has pulled its city-county merger proposal for the time being.
- One alderman has introduced a bill that, if approved, would allow residents to vote on a charter amendment to reverse the previously approved reduction of aldermen on the board from 28 to 14, following the publication of the 2020 census.
- Airport privatization remains a hot topic.
- Property taxes in the 17thward are expected to increase this year – some fairly significantly – as our region continues to thrive and grow and property values increase.
- The Armory is close to releasing an announcement as their anchor tenant.
- Housing – Mr. Roddy serves on a committee focusing on keeping affordable housing while supporting growth (gentrification) in our ward. Expect public forums on this topic next year.
Marshall Michener said Jim Whyte reported no major crimes last month. Reported incidents are primarily larceny and auto thefts, which are trending on track with the last 3 to 4 years for the quarter January-April. One resident attending said her car was stolen from in front of her house last month.
An RFP was issued for the city security patrols and City’s Finest won (again), with a commitment to focus their patrols in higher problem areas.
Terry Werner reminded the group that he has security cameras on the alley north of the 4100-4200 block of West Pine between Boyle and Sarah. His cameras record 24/7 and get high quality, detailed images (which he retains for a week). Feel free to contact him if you have an incident in that area.
Diana Gualdoni, Secretary