Regular Meeting of May 8, 2014

Minutes of Regular Meeting on May 8, 2014

Meeting began at 7:30 pm. Councilmembers Patrick Wojahn, Fazlul Kabir, and Denise Mitchell were present.

Nominations

The nominees for NCPCA officers are Chris Nagel (President), Arthur Eaton (Vice President), Larry Bleau (Secretary), Jackie Pearce-Garrett (Treasurer). In place of a Q&A, each should make a short statement about their vision for NCPCA.

Discussions

Greenbelt Metro Entrance

Members voiced numerous concerns about the College Park side of the access to the Greenbelt Metro: there are a lot of drop-offs, cars backing into the intersection, vehicles blowing through stop signs, and overflowing trash containers. Possible ideas put forward were more signs, a change in parking zones, additional police presence, and video cameras.

City Police Force

There are three components to the duties of the City’s contract police: safety and crime prevention, back up of County officers, and support of code enforcement officers. They patrol each of the City’s districts the same number of hours, but there are more miles in district 1, so less time is spent in a given neighborhood. The time in a district is based on address when responding to a call for support or backup. We pay $18M to Prince Georges County for police service. If we stop this due to starting our own police force we don’t get it all back due to a complex differential formula; the differential gets less each year. The contract police force cost $0.5M in 2008, $1.1M in 2014. Greenbelt’s police force costs $8.5M for more than 50 officers. A 2007 study recommended we keep contract police. Some members suggested that police who live in the city park their unused vehicles in the neighborhood; other expressed the sentiment that we would have a greater sense of ownership if we had our own police force.

Announcements

Mark Shroder thanked all NCPCA members who volunteered to support the Mothers Day Run; College Park Wesleyan church will have a health screening 5/24 9am-noon, call Sharon 301-247-8599; there will be a public hearing on changes to the bus routes on Tue, 5/13 at 7pm; Stamp Out Hunger will hold a food drive this Sat; College Park Community Foundation will have a community service meeting on 6/7; Hollywood Farmers Market will have its grand opening on 5/17; Bike To Work Day will be on 5/16, there will be two pit stops in the City in the morning, one in the afternoon; there will be a police Q&A session on 5/29 at 7pm at Davis Hall.

Updates: The vandalism continues near the intersection of 52nd and Narragansett under the CSX tracks: persons stole a generator, marked walls with graffiti spray paint. MD State Highway Administration is looking into it.

There was a recent robbery at Dunkin Donuts. The photo released by the police was, in one member’s opinion, nondescript and not helpful; officers need to provide details if they want the community to be on the lookout for a specific person. Members were unanimous in their opinion that they expect the City’s Public Services Director to be more proactive, and asked that Mr. Ryan come to the June NCPCA meeting.

Reports

Moved by Jackie Pearce-Garrett/Diane Clayburn: Adopt the minutes of NCPCA April 10 meeting without change; motion passed.

Treasurer Jackie Pearce-Garrett reported a current balance of $1,198.47; expenses included $49 stamps. Dues are due next month. There were no other officer reports.

New Business

Hollywood Road Extended

This item was not on the original agenda but was added today at the request of a member, and an email was sent to the list to inform members of the new item. About five years ago, the developer of the Mazza property was required to set aside $500K in escrow for a detailed site plan for properties along US 1. The DSP was never done due to the inability of the developer to assemble the properties, and the developer wants the funds returned. City planning staff wants to use the funds for a feasibility study to extend Hollywood Road to connect to the apartment complex. Members from the north Autoville area, as well as a business owner, opposed this idea, fearing that it would lead to a suggested connection between Autoville Dr. and the Mazza property, which they oppose, and that it would have a negative impact on businesses. Other members wanted more information.

Moved by Stasia Hutchison/Susan Johnson: Oppose the feasibility study and return the funds. Moved by Leslie Booth/Philip Aronson: Postpone the vote until the June meeting to allow members to get more information. The motion to postpone failed, after which the main motion passed 15-1-5.

Moved by Larry Bleau/Phil Aronson: Adjourn the meeting; motion passed, and the meeting adjourned at 9:59 pm.

Submitted by Larry Bleau, Secretary.

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