A meeting of the Arlington Housing Authority was held, which was open to the
public, and was called to order by Chairman Richard B. Murray, on Wednesday,
January 10, 2007, at 7:05 PM in the John F. Cusack Room, located at 4 Winslow Street, Arlington, MA. The Roll Call was taken and the following members of the Arlington Housing Authority were present:
Present: Richard Murray
Brian J. Connor
Teresa J. Walsh
Brian R. Greeley
Also Present: Franklin W. Hurd, Jr. Executive Director Elaine Slavin, Section 8 Tenant Representative
The Chairman announced that the filing of the Notice with the Town Clerk has been complied with and directed a copy of this Notice be spread upon the records, a copy of which is as follows: Notice is hereby given in accordance with Section 23, Chapter 39 of the Massachusetts General Laws, that a meeting of the Arlington Housing Authority will be held on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 7:00 PM in the Town Hall, Arlington, MA.
CERTIFICATE AS TO SERVICE OF NOTICE OF MEETING
I, Franklin W. Hurd, Jr., the duly appointed Secretary of the Arlington Housing Authority, do hereby certify that on December 28, 2006 was e-mailed and filed with the Town Clerk of the Town of Arlington a copy of Notice of Meeting, of which the foregoing is a true and correct copy.
Marion King asked if there were any updates on the Kitchen and Bathroom Modernization project. Mr. Hurd stated that the application was submitted to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a Special Permit for the Chapter 200-2 handicap unit buildings.
Ms. King attended a Community Service for "No Hate" and she picked up some pamphlets and asked if they could be available at the AHA. Mr. Hurd asked her to give them to him and he would make them available.
Mr. Hurd discussed the Minuteman Senior project. Construction of office space has started and the office will be completed by the beginning of February, 2007. He said that there will be a meeting on the 17th of January with the tenants to inform them of the program and its features.
Mr. Hurd informed the Board that all the windows in the Donnelly Residence, 689-1, will be replaced by the end of the week.
Rev. David Swaim, from the High Rock Church, and Mr. Maynard Large, a Winslow Towers tenant, met with the Board. Rev. Swaim asked for permission to conduct a weekly Bible Study program in the Community Room. He envisioned starting the program at Winslow Towers and then expanding to the other Elderly/Disabled Developments.
The Bible Study program would be about a half hour in length. They usually have someone who comes in and plays the piano or organ, and then they just socialize.
Mr. Connor asked if there were other similar services held in the building. Mr. Hurd said that there is a Catholic Mass at every building once a month.
It was asked what the policy was. Mr. Hurd said that the Catholic Mass had started many years ago at the request of the tenants who were basically shut-ins. The tenant association should be asked for its input. He said that he had several questions; such as, who would be coming into the building, would it be for tenants only, and who would be responsible for letting church representatives in, etc.
The High Rock Church survives on donations from its members. There are 320 people who attend this church and there are 120 members. It takes about one year to become a member.
Upon a motion by Mr. Greeley, and seconded by Mr. Connor, it was unanimously:
VOTED: To approve the request for three months, subject to approval by the AHA staff and the Local Tenant Association.
Downing Square Property
Mr. Greeley left the meeting while this discussion was taking place.
Mr. Hovsepain discussed a proposal for his Downing Square property that was approved for 22 units. He thought that the AHA might be interested in purchasing it. The approved plans called for 2 ½ story buildings, with the first and second floors identical. The complex would have 16 2 –bedroom units and 6 1-bedroom units. The third floor is a ½ floor. Each unit has a terrace.
Mr. Hovsepain is selling the land fully permitted and clean. The land is ¾ of an acre and selling for $2.8 million and the estimated cost to build is an additional $4 million.
Mr. Hurd commented that the Board would first need to consider the targeted use for such a development, and then evaluate the financing possibilities. Included in that may be such things for consideration: as project basing part of the development, creating a mixed housing situation with market rate units, use of the nonprofit, tax credits, and partnerships.
The Board reviewed the draft version of the 2006 Annual Report. Mr. Greeley discussed various security initiatives such as lock protection devises and cameras that were installed in 2006.
Mr. Hurd stated that security was an ongoing initiative in the elderly buildings and that he was hoping to expand security efforts in Menotomy Manor as part of the modernization project.
Mr. Connor asked if the carbon monoxide detectors were battery operated and who changes the batteries. The maintenance staff will be changing the batteries once a year. New hard-wired detectors will be installed in Menotomy Manor as part of the modernization work.
Five Year Plan
Mr. Hurd presented a spreadsheet and explained to the Board how this spending plan works. He thought that the presentation would be helpful to the Board in seeing the planned initiatives over the next five years. He did note that changes were always part of the process due to unforeseen needs, but the plan still provided a good strategy to meet future building needs.
Upon a motion by Ms. Walsh, and seconded by Mr. Connor, it was unanimously:
VOTED: To approve the minutes of the Regular Meeting of December 20, 2006.
Mr. Connor and Mr. Hurd met with Attorney John Greco to discuss an update of the AHA Bylaws. Attorney Greco brought a copy of the Bylaws for the Medford Housing Authority and upon their review, it seemed that a "boilerplate" model used in 1948 for the creation of local housing authorities is common throughout the State.
Being wary of changing the basic corporate Bylaws, they recommeded that the Board consider directing its review towards a policies and procedures approach. Mr. Hurd distributed a draft document which he said could be the start of the development of a comprehensive Policy & Procedures Manual. He said that he would continue working on that project with Mr. Connor.
Mr. Greeley thought this was a great idea as a member of the subcommittee with Mr. Connor. He would like to discuss this further with him and report to the Board their progress every Board Meeting. He hoped that the Policies and Procedures Manual would be completed in six months.
Mr. Hurd offered his help with this project. Mr. Hurd also suggested that they also revisit the Personnel Policy. He said that in the past, a representative from Administration and the Maintenance Department had met with those in their respective groups to review the personnel policy and discuss possible changes to it with the Executive Director. Those selected were the most senior non-.managerial employees. The Executive Director may also have recommeded changes since the last review in 2000.
Ms. Walsh and Mr. Connor are going to start looking for a condo to see which one will be a good investment for the AHA.
Ms. Walsh wanted to know about the 175 Units in Millbrook. She stated that we should protect these units as affordable. The Lease expires sometime in 2007. The Board doesn't want to lose this.
A statement should be made to extend the lease for another five years. Mr. Hurd will look into this.
Mr. Connor stated that Lifeline is running an EMT Course for $700.00. Any tenant that is willing to take this course will have $100.00 taken off the course. Mr. Hurd said that he would consider it.
The next Board Meeting is February 21st at 7:00PM.
Upon a motion by Mr. Greeley, and seconded by Mr. Mitropoulos, it was unanimously:
VOTED: To adjourn the meeting at 8:38 PM.