November 9, 2011
Ghent Neighborhood League
Blair Middle School Auditorium
Call to order 6:43 pm
Board Attendance – Irene O’Brien, Paige Rose, Henry Conde, Joan McEnery, Susanna Ott, Al Mc Coy, and Paul & Emily Birkness
Not in Attendance – Mike Spencer, Barbara Murphy, Amy Crowfoot
Crime Report – Officer Mason – 7 commercial burglaries (someone in custody), 2 indecent exposures – appears to be same person, 2 robberies – home invasions – one in custody & another @ Blair, No issues w/ Zombie Walk, homeless issues being discussed with GTF, Bike patrol for holiday season,
Meet the City Manager, Mr Marcus Jones – Establish a data driven organization for better efficiency, shows report card of success. When came in, had $32 mill short fall. Had $5.5 mil decrease in ongoing revenue – mostly real-estate. One time revenue of $8.5 (can’t count on in future and can’t use for future budgeting).
Real-estate revenue counts for 24% of revenue. Over 30 yr. period residential assessments had not decreased. Expect another 2% decrease. Before we have had a 6% average return on real-estate, now this has changed.
How do we achieve vision w/ challenges? a synergized norfolk gov w/in all depts. Draft new priorities w/ definitions.
? How do we improve education with little or no cost? Create a “neighborhoods building neighborhoods”.
? How does the 2030 vision work for Ghent? Look at land use. regulate by form to the specific neighborhood.
? Safe & healthy neighborhoods – It appears that city is undermining this with decisions, for example CSB being consolidated.
Comment – likes seeing the improvements
Comment – what can the people do to make this a better place to live. Knowing your neighbors and caring for each other and creating the network amongst each other. Allowing city & neighbors work together in ways that are effective.
?how can city help in aiding creating this?
PlaNorfolk 2030 – not presented
Guests with Business before the board
Robyn Thomas: Taphouse – not here
SharX – not here
7-11 follow-up – Police Officer discussed crime at current 7-11 stores. Data gathered didn’t show but a few incidents. GNL board member noted that there was a hold-up at the Colley & Gates Aves store a couple months ago. 7-Eleven representatives showed the changes to the previous drawings. It was noted that the signage on street was lowered. Those in attendance inquired about willingness to stop selling single serve alcohol beverages in their current 3 Ghent stores. No response was given. Several others in attendance had complaints about the current locations. It was felt that while the services (coffee & snacks) and everyone seems to like the employees they felt the environment of the stores has not been an asset to Ghent and feel that another location will only worsen the issues. Issues mentioned: store appearance, banners, posters blocking visibility of parking lot, aggressive panhandling, loitering, drinking areas surrounding store on Olney, and traffic issues with deliveries all day and night.
GNL Board Reports – deferred
-Ghent Task Force
-Historic & Architectural Preservation Committee
Committee Business/Committee Chair Reports
-Community Improvements – Silke/Paige – Colonial & 21st & Llewellyn left turn signals, missed street cleaning issues resolved,
-Sector Rep – Open
-Membership – Barbara
-Publicity/Social Events – open
-Communications – Irene/Henry
-Program – Mike Spencer