Meeting Minutes

Meeting Minutes, 4/17/2009

Topics Covered:

  • Approval of Meeting Minutes
  • Discuss car updates
  • Discuss insurance updates
  • Discuss contract updates
  • Discuss cell phone updates
  • Discuss newsletter updates
  • Discuss survey updates
  • Discuss bank accounts and check status
  • Discuss possibly ordering a noise monitor
  • Discuss Personal Financial Disclosure Forms for commissioners
  • Discuss who will have the responsibility of paying the bills
  • Discuss getting voicemail system and if so, how it will be monitoring?

These minutes are pending approval.
Attendance:

Board Members:

  •  Colleen Boyle-Gannon
  • Angela Henderson
  • Susan Guidry
  • Corey Tisdale
  • Romney Richard

Also in attendance: Becker Rutledge

Approval of Meeting Minutes
MOTION made by Angela Henderson to approve meeting minutes from March 19, 2009 Meeting, seconded by Romney Richard. Unanimous approval.
Meeting minutes from April 2nd, 2009 will be approved and voted on in the subsequent meeting.

OLD BUSINESS

Discuss car updates
Everything that can be set in motion has been as far as ordering. However, the ordering cannot be finalized until the cooperative agreement is signed.

Discuss insurance updates
Zack from Eagan Insurance is trying to help us however we have not had progress with Eagan.
Eustis insurance is no longer calling Susan Guidry back.
Gillis Ellis and Baker sounds promising and is working with Susan. They haven’t yet agreed but it seems they are open to it.
May need to consider AIG or other insurers.
The type of insurance we are needing is a secondary liability coverage.

Discuss contract updates
Supt. Riley is fine with the contract. Ronnie is going to make sure the contract is hand delivered to the right people tomorrow. Ronnie is following it through. Corey will need to sign before Nagin signs.
After it goes to City Attorney it goes through City Administrative Office and then it goes to Nagin’s office for him to sign.

Discuss cell phone updates
Romney has purchased the cell phones including 1 blackberry and two regular phones that have walkie talkie capability and voice dialing. We have the contract for 2 years.
The phone number for Ronnie Stevens is 330-2041. The phone is unlimited as far as minutes.
Total cost for all 3 phones, $159.35 per month. Total cost of phone equipment (the phones/chargers) is $572.37 total.
We purchased insurance for the blackberry but didn’t for other two phones as the customer service rep said it was not worth it.
The owner of the company who sold us the phones is a Mid-City resident!

Discuss newsletter updates
Newsletter is almost complete. Romney has done some editing and she would like us to review the newsletter before it goes out.
MOTION by Angela Henderson to assign the title “MCSD Managing Officer” to Ronnie Stevens.  Romney Richard seconded. 4 in favor. 0 opposed.

Discuss survey updates
Survey is finalized.
Angie will need to post the survey online so that we can include the link in the newsletter.
MOTION by Romney that the survey is finalized and is to be distributed to citizens within the MCSD. 2nd by Angela Henderson. 4-0 in favor.

Discuss bank accounts and check status
Whitney Bank and Capital One will both require 2 signatures of any two board members.
Guarantee Savings on Canal – paperwork is ready. Money Market account. ~1.1% interest rate. They cannot monitor the two signatures but we can monitor that.
Account with Capital One that Romney’s past security district group had is around $753.77. It was decided that it would be a good thing to donate the money to something that will improve security in the neighborhood.

NEW BUSINESS

Discuss possibly ordering a noise monitor
It was decided that we need more information on the subject of the noise monitor before we decide whether or not to spend the money on the monitor.
Questions include: How would we coordinate the use? The training? How exactly is the noise ordinance enforced? What are the penalties for noise violation? What are the procedures? What about neighbors who throw parties and have loud cars? What successes and failures has the French Quarter had with their noise monitor?

Discuss Personal Financial Disclosure Forms for commissioners
Board members will fill out the forms, make copies, fax the copies and send the originals to the Louisiana Board of Ethics by certified mail.

Discuss who will have the responsibility of paying the bills
MOTION by Romney Richard that Becker Rutledge pays the bills and keeps all financial records. Seconded by Susan Guidry. All in favor unanimous.

Discuss getting voicemail system and if so, how it will be monitoring?
Corey gets 10-15 emails per week. And now he is getting 4-5 calls per day for the last 3 days. This is because the assessor’s office sent out incorrect tax bills that did not include the security district fee. Now, people are getting delinquency fees for the security district not being paid, although the city never billed them originally.
Concern about having to have Ronnie responding to all of the complaints. We would not want to overwhelm Ronnie with this. Also concern that if assessor needs to reach a board member, we want to make sure he has a phone number for a board member.
Corey will distribute phone calls to board members directly so that we can share the burden of calling each concerned citizen back.

MOTION to adjourn made by Angela Henderson at 8:00p. Seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

midcityMeeting Minutes, 4/17/2009
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Meeting Minutes, 4/2/2009

Topics Covered:

  • Ordering of cars
  • GPS for cars
  • Gas/Maintenance/Insurance for cars
  • Putting dollar limits on motions made

These minutes are pending approval.
Attendance:
Board Members:

  • Colleen Boyle-Gannon
  • Angela Henderson
  • Susan Guidry
  • Corey Tisdale

Also in attendance: none

Ordering of cars
It was decided by the board that in general we need to make sure we are asking enough questions. We need to fully understand each decision, purchase, etc.
There was some question on the unmarked car and the reasoning for having the car. It was decided that there was confusion because different board members spoke with different officers at different times and because information was not readily shared between board members.
Idea came up that we should ensure we are emailing everyone, the whole board group, all the time so that everyone stays in the loop.

GPS for cars
At Willie Davis meeting, we heard that GPS was included in the package with the cars. The GPS will allow us to have a history of where the unmarked and marked cars are going.
There are also $250 GPS systems that can be purchased in addition to this – an independent service.

Gas/Maintenance/Insurance for cars
City will pay for gas, maintenance and insurance. Without the unmarked, take home car, the coordinating officer probably would not have a car to use. Unmarked cars are not to be used for personal use except to go to and from work. However it was agreed that some other short personal trips are to be expected

Putting dollar limits on motions made
Discussion that it’s a good idea to indicate a maximum dollar amount when discussing ordering of resources for the security district. Colleen has been charged with bylaws and will research this.

MOTION by Angela Henderson to order 2 marked cars and 1 unmarked car. The unmarked car being the car for the use of the MCSD Coordinator for take home use. Seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

MOTION by Angela Henderson to order computers for installation in each of the 3 cars we order. Seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

MOTION by Angela Henderson to restrict the car budget to $45,000 per car. Seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

MOTION by Angela Henderson to adjourn 6:38pm. Seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

midcityMeeting Minutes, 4/2/2009
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Meeting Minutes, 3/19/2009

Topics Covered

  • Approval of Meeting Minutes
  • Vote on Lawyer
  • Vote on Board of Liquidations
  • Cooperative Agreement Update
  • Bank Accounts Update
  • Insurance Update
  • Car Update
  • Cell Phones Update
  • Bylaws Update
  • Info from NOPD
  • Newsletter Discussion

These minutes were approved on 4/19/2009.

Attendence:

Board Members:

  • Colleen Boyle-Gannon
  • Angela Henderson
  • Susan Guidry
  • Corey Tisdale
  • Romney Richard

Also in attendance:
Citizens: Joseph Brock, John Caron, Raul M Jackson, Ben Claassen, Susa Barre.
Officers: Doug Eckert, Harold Chambliss, Ronnie Stevens, Chris Cambiatti

Approval of Meeting Minutes
MOTION made by Angela Henderson to approve meeting minutes from March 1 Meeting, seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

OLD BUSINESS

Raymond Landry update
Fees agreed upon are at $125 per hour for all services rendered.

Board of Liquidations
From last month, we moved to reevaluate the use of the board of liquidations next month based on the success we have in collecting money from City Hall this month.
MOTION by Angela Henderson to leave our check collecting system as is. Susan Guidry seconded this motion. Unanimous approval.

Cooperative Agreement
Need for Norton to review and give us feedback if any.
Handed it out to officers including Cambiatti. It is also in FJ’s hands.
Sounds like we need to send to City Attorney’s office.

Bank Accounts
Monies have been deposited in Capital One and Whitney Bank.
In the process of opening an account with Gulf Coast.
FDIC insured limit is $250K so we aim to limit each account to a maximum of $250K.

Success in finding insurance
Eagan has sent out our insurance to several underwriters but we have received no response.
Got contact info for Lakeview’s insurance from Doug Eckert – Eustis Insurance, looking into this.

Car update
Major roadblock: no cars in stock. Recession has forced a downsizing of plants that offer decaling for police vehicles. There is now only one plant in Canada and we are looking at a 60-120 days turnaround time.
$38K is the general cost including decal, basic police package, computer, camera
Cameras are in car not to watch criminals but to watch officers. Cameras are expensive, $5K and must be replaced. These cameras go down often and when they do the car AND the camera must be in the shop together.
License plate reader – currently on a test pilot series, only auto theft group have access to this and the 1st district, and NOPD is not currently authorized to install the license plate reader.
Ronnie’s car will come online sooner because it doesn’t need decaling.
MOTION by Angela Henderson to reevaluate need for cameras at September Board Meeting. Seconded by Romney Richard. Unanimous approval.

NEW BUSINESS

NOPD MCSD startup discussion
Start-up – In Lakeview they started w/a lot of officers using take home cars. As soon as Lakeview vehicles were purchased, officers started using the Lakeview cars.
Could start by paying a detail, see who has cars, see how this works but then we would have to insure the officers – highly expensive, not feasible.
Parkview is shutting down their patrol services at the end of this month.
Detail rates – are higher than overtime rates
Overtime rates – $35/hr would be at the higher end, this will vary based on the officer’s hourly rate
Overtime can not exceed 24 hours per week legally per officer.
Ronnie is our contact – we need to have everything go through Ronnie as far as officers, ordering, etc.
Will need to wait for cooperative agreement for Ronnie to start.

Updates on bylaws
Colleen got examples from Shelly Landrieu of other districts’ bylaws from uptown Security District

Cell phones
Romney will keep track of the status.
We need to purchase and include main cell number in 1st newsletter
MOTION by Romney Richard to go through the police department’s office of technology for cell phone equipment. Seconded by Angela Henderson. Unanimous approval.
MOTION by Angela Henderson to authorize Romney Richard to sign a cell phone contract on behalf of the MCSD. Seconded by Susan Guidry. Unanimous approval.

Status of determining how notice of meetings will be given and communications
Meeting with city on open meetings law, we should learn more then.
MOTION to defer determining notice of meetings and how to communicate meetings to public until after seminar with city on March 31st. Seconded by Angela Henderson. Unanimous approval.

Survey – review of draft
Need to include this in newsletter for those who cannot go online to fill out the newsletter.
Survey will give us an idea of what the sentiment is and then what it is in the future.
Also what the general sentiment is as far as how we want the officers to do their patrolling.
We can use PO Box of Romney Richard as return address for surveys

Newsletter Additions
Some questions on what should be in the newsletter.
Request for additional entries.

MOTION to adjourn made by Angela Henderson at 8:05p. Seconded by Romney Richard. Unanimous approval.

midcityMeeting Minutes, 3/19/2009
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Meeting Minutes, 3/1/2009

Topics covered:

  • Approval of Meeting Minutes
  • Selection of Accountant
  • Selection of Lawyer
  • Tax freeze
  • Board of liquidations
  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Cooperative Agreement
  • Bank accounts

These minutes were approved on 3/19/2009. MCSD Monthly Board Meeting
March 1, 2009, 5:00 PM

Attendance: 

Board Members:

  • Colleen Boyle-Gannon
  • Angela Henderson
  • Susan Guidry
  • Corey Tisdale
  • Romney Richard

Also in attendance were 6 additional Mid-City residents.

Approval of Meeting Minutes
MOTION made by Angela Henderson to approve meeting minutes from April, seconded by Corey Tisdale, unanimous approval.

Selection of Lawyer
Ben Misko is leaving his firm and therefore is withdrawing his services.
Raymond Landry is the other option. His normal hourly rate $220 but will adjust rate. “For free on-up” is what he has said.
A rate of $125 is the “bottom dollar” of what Ben’s firm could do. He said that would be a very affordable rate although lawyers may be willing to do pro-bono work.
MOTION from Angela Henderson to select Raymond Landry, 2nd from Colleen. Unanimous approval.

Selection of Accountant
The position of accountant for the Mid-City security district was well advertised but received little response.
Becker Rutledge has shown an in depth interest and also has done good work for MCNO.
MOTION by Romney Richard to choose Becker Rutledge as our Accountant. Seconded by Angela Brenneke. Unanimous approval.

Tax freeze
There are 842 households within the boundaries of the security district who have tax freezes on their property. That would total $168,000 in revenue for the security district.
Ideally we could have a group who could select and give exemptions in the case of hardship. However it would be impossible for the tax assessors to process the tax bills and this could not be passed through the legislature.
MOTION by Corey Tisdale to reevaluate this topic in Sept 2009. Seconded by Angela Henderson. Unanimous approval.

Board of liquidations
From what we can tell, collecting the tax money will not be a problem.
The other advantage to the board of liquidations is that they are able to give you stats on the collections.
MOTION from Angela Henderson to reevaluate the use of the board of liquidations next month based on the success we have in collecting money from City Hall this month. Seconded by Colleen Boyle-Gannon. Unanimous approval.

Roles and Responsibilities
The following is a preliminary set of roles and responsibilities. Of course additional roles will come up and we will divide up the work from there.
COMMUNICATIONS – Romney will be in charge of getting out newsletters and mailings, with the assistance of other board members.
OPERATIONS – Susan will be the liaison for accountant, lawyer, insurance. Also will assist Colleen in reviewing of the monthly reporting received from Ronnie Stevens.
SECRETARY – Angie will taking notes at meetings, printing the agenda for those who attend the board meetings. She will send them out after meetings and make corrections as necessary. Also in charge of the creation of a “job description” for Sgt. Ronnie Stevens (largely by using section II of the cooperative agreement).
CHAIRPERSON – Corey will facilitate meetings to keep us on time and on track. He will also send out the notices for when meetings will be held to the public through the MCNO discussion board, the Nola.com Mid-City forum and the newspaper.
WEBSITE MASTER – Corey will continue with website maintenance and posting of new information on the website.
BYLAWS – Colleen will research/create the bylaws for the Mid-City security to guide our organization.
OFFICER/CAR LIASON – Colleen will double check reports coming from Ronnie. She will be in charge of maintenance and upkeep of cars and will help us plan for additional purchases if necessary.

Cooperative Agreement
Originally we used Lakeview Crime Prevention District’s Cooperative Agreement with City as a guide to create our own.
After Susan Guidry reviewed it, she found a great deal of redundancy and vague areas that she was able to re-write to make more clear.
Largest substantive change was to make it plain that when it comes to determining what basic services the NOPD are giving us that they are not to change. So that if the city increases the number of officers in each district, that we also receive that addition. That we are kept on par with the rest of the city despite our own addition of the security district.
Currently we are waiting for feedback from FJ on our revisions.
MOTION made by Corey Tisdale to revisit the topic of changes made to the cooperative agreement after we have feedback from FJ Madary. Seconded by Angela Henderson. Unanimous approval.

Bank accounts
Point was brought up that we may need to put the selection of the bank out to bid. This was brought up by Charles Ciaccio.
A second concern was brought up that we should probably put the money into some sort of account that will gain interest and have a guaranteed rate of return.
Finally, a further concern was aired that we may need to use several accounts due to the FDIC insurance limit of $250,000
ACTION – For Angie to contact Shelly Landrieu, Murray Nelson and Becker Rutledge to get their advice on this.
****Post-meeting, I learned that an institution like Citigroup could insurance our account up to $750,000 through three different banks. If we go with a local bank, they would not be able to do that. However, it is possible that the limit of $250,000 would increase since we are not an “individual” investor, but because we are a government entity. This will be confirmed and further understood per conversations with Shelly, Murray and Becker.****

MOTION to adjourn made by Angela Henderson at 6:30pm. Seconded by Corey Tisdale. Unanimous approval.

midcityMeeting Minutes, 3/1/2009
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Meeting Minutes, 1/15/2009

Topics covered:

  • Feedback from residents
  • Feedback from Assessor Daren Mire’s office
  • Operational ideas from police officers
  • Potential sergeant introductions and comments fromt he community
  • CPA requirements
  • Voting on a sergeant

These minutes were approved on 3/1/2009.

Attendance:

Board members:

  • Romney Richard, Present
  • Colleen Boyle-Gannon, Present
  • Angela Brenneke, Present
  • Susan Guidry, Present,
  • Corey Tisdale,Present

Others in attendance: Valencia Moore, Alicia Labatt, John Domaine, Sgt Avery Theard, Sgt Ronnie Stevens, Lt. Chris Cambiatti, Ben Misko, Ben Classen, Becker Rutledge, Joseph Brock

NEW BUSINESS:

Feedback from the Residents:
Several folks from the Mid-City Security District area were in attendance and we decided to let them speak first before moving on with the agenda.
Mid City tax payer Valencia Moore was disturbed because she did not know about the bill before it was in the works until it was on the ballot. Valencia and Alicia both offered that it would be helpful to have info on the security district for distribution at the assessors’ office.
Mid City tax payer John Domaine pointed out that we need to have contact info posted at the assessor’s offices as well. He also pointed out that some citizens may be willing to donate extra money to make up for the reduced income from introducing a tax freeze amendment.
Ben Classen noted that we should try to cut drug houses down as well. He also points out that we may be able to hire completely dedicated officers other than the sgt instead of overtime, but the police seem to think this would lead to being to reliant on a few people, and if one person gets sick we would lose out on more patrol time if they filled 16 hours a day rather than 4 hours a day. He says he would like us to break new ground on what we should expect.

Assessors office (Alicia Labatt):
Taxation errors have been discovered and they are in the process of being fixed. The lesson here is that we should send info to everyone in City Hall who might need the info, and if it is too much info for a certain department, so be it.

Legislative amendment:
We can to try to get a rate freeze and put in a refund for people with rate freezes. We can also ask Walter O’Brien to hold the issuance of the tax bills that need to be adjusted higher until we can change the bill to adjust the bill down.
Can we change to board of liquidation on this same amendment?
In the future. We might keep in mind that if a millage is charged, the fee for the security district would not be separated out as a separate fee but rather included in the whole property tax listing.

Operational ideas from police officers:
Sgt. Ronnie Stevens noted that we can either operate the detail as a visibility or as a proactive approach. Visibility would potentially lead to less arrests but more visibility, proactivity would lead to more arrests but also more reports, so less patrolling.
Sgt. Avery Theard recommended an approach whereby if the officers need to be proactive, to call non-district officers to perform actual arrests so that other officers do the paperwork.

Officer introductions:
Both officers Sgt. Stevens and also Sgt. Theard were introduced at the meeting as potential officers to lead the Mid-City Security district.
Separately we allowed each to discuss their background with us and the skills that they bring to the table.

Comments from following introduction of officers:
Mid City taxpayer Joseph Brock liked both officers. He feels that Stevens may have less to learn, but Theard may be more excited and work harder since he is younger.
Another Mid City taxpayer notes that Stevens’ experience with buying cars and budgeting makes him his pick.
John Domaine voiced his opinion favoring Ronnie Stevens as the Sgt. because he feels Stevens will have less to learn.

OLD BUSINESS

CPA/Budget:
Becker notes that she has been the CPA for MCNO for a while and would like to help but does not know what goes in to being the CPA. The legislative audit would be a separate charge, but Becker would have everything the auditor needs. If we can get a list of responsibilities developed, we can get a better quote.
Also, Sgt Eckert will sit down with us to help us develop a budget and will be able to assist our incoming Sgt.

Motion to adjourn was made by Angela Brenneke. Meeting adjourned and then was re-opened by a motion.

MOTION: Angela Henderson motioned to select Sgt. Ronnie Stevens to hire as the Sergeant for running the Mid-City Security Distrct. Motion was seconded and received unanimous approval.

Motion to adjourn made by Angela Henderson, seconded and received unanimous approval. Meeting adjourned at 8:15 PM.

midcityMeeting Minutes, 1/15/2009
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