Neighborhood Meeting Minutes – September 2020

Eastside Neighborhood Association

Board of Directors Meeting Notes

September 16, 2020

Virtual Meeting

Attendees: Sherry Chilcutt, Jim Rioux, Jim Sweeney, Roger Horn, Nathan Allan, Tim Smythe, Marygrace Goodue (Olympia CP&D), Jon Cardona (Newbridge), Stephanie Johnson (Olympia Parks), Jon Cardona

  • Art Crossing

Stephanie Johnson gave a presentation on the status of the Art Crossing project.  The artist has been selected, Andrea Wilbur-Sigo.  Ms. Wilbur-Sigo is an active member of the Squaxin Island Tribe, and her work reflects her heritage and a robust artistic community. Stephanie showed slides of her work.

Jim Sweeny shared how excited the jury was with the selection.

The next step is a community neighborhood meeting.  Stephanie would like to hold that meeting in early October.

The board discussed combining that with a Special Meeting of the member to share that, due to the pandemic, a February meeting is not likely. The board also wants to propose moving our Annual Meeting to October which requires an amendment to our bylaws. This will; allow us more time to submit required information to the City and meet their deadlines.

We decided to hold a combined meeting on October 14, 2020. Jim will work with Stephanie to the word out about the meeting.

  • Historic Neighborhood Designation

Marygrace gave a brief presentation on the Armory.

The city is very excited about the project. The facility is ideal for all sorts of gatherings.  City staff toured several facilities managed by public entities. They came away excited about the impact of these facilities have on their communities.

The building is in very good shape. It is a stone structure that is well maintained and clean. The City will get a report that outlines facility condition. City staff is interested, but council has not approved the purchase.

The Department of the Military will put the building up for sale in about a year through the State surplus center. It must be offered first to other state agencies and governmental entities. The City does not believe any other agencies are interested.

There is an Internal group staring to put together a public communication plan, and there is a November study session planned for City Council.

Roger asked if they had an idea of the cost.  Stephanie said they did not.

Roger asked if historic designation helps. Marygrace clarified that it is not yet designated as a historic property. Jim Sweeney is working with the City on that.  The local designation is what caries the most weight and they hope to have the application submitted before the building is put on the market.

Sherry asked about Historic District designation

Marygrace explained the general process. She indicated that we would need good documentation outlining why the district should receive historic designation.   There is a process that begins with a reconnaissance level survey. It begins with inventory of historical features of the district.

The next step is more formal inventory of historic features. This is a significant amount of work.

The most important first step is understanding why you would do this.

The designation comes with some regulation. Olympia only has jurisdiction over exterior alterations visible to the street.  Historic preservation review would become part of the building permit review.

Roger asked if the Olympia Historical Society supports historic designation of the Armory. Marygrace indicated that she was in contact with them and they do support it.

  • After School Homework help

Jon Cardona with the New Bridge Community Church discussed the challenges of COVID-19 and the needs of children and parents trying to manage school needs. The church asked what they could do to help. They came up with the idea of a Free Homework Help Club. Starting with Madison Elementary Scholl and they are looking for ENA support.

They will hold homework help sessions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 7:00 pm. Kids can sign up for 45-minute time slots. Volunteers will get training and receive background checks.

Benefits are not only homework help, but also provides safe social interaction.

They plan to start Tuesday September 29th.

They are looking for feedback.

Nathan thought the program was great.

Sherry asked how they are advertising? Jon said that they are banners at the church and mailers.

Sherry asked what their capacity is. Jon explained that they have 30 to 40 volunteers that have teaching experience.


sherry suggested that we post something on NeXT door. Nathan mentioned that we can put something on our web site,

  • Trees-Black Knot Fungus

Tim Smyth talked about the history of trees that are now being impacted by the fungus.  He shared that he has organized a volunteer effort for conducting tree removal.  He is looking for support and help with notification of adjacent landowners.

There was a general discussion about the history of tree planting in the neighborhood. Tim offered to give a Tree Tour of the areas where he has planted trees over the years.  

Since the City is not providing any support for the effort to remove and replant the trees, the Board discussed providing a donation. The board held a vote and it was a unanimous decision to donate $300 for trees.

  • Approval of minutes

July and August minutes were approved.

  • Treasurer Report

Checking $438.30

Savings $1061.66

Neighborhood Signs $1304.81

Legion Way Trees $152.92

Community Beautification $409.09

Next Meeting  

October 21, 2020

7:00 PM

Virtual Meeting.

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