Brad called the meeting to order. 26 Neighbors were present.
The previous month’s minutes have been posted and were approved. DGNA currently has $4,623.48.
DGNA was pleased to host Diana Hauman from Ward 8 and Carlo Robustelli on behalf of Tari Renner to hear about the upcoming mayoral election.
Diana Hauman has lived in Bloomington-Normal for 21 years and is the current alderman for Ward 8. Before retirement, she worked in Human Resources in employee training and development. She is running for mayor because she is disappointed in some things that she has seen. She wants to prioritize the action items of the Bring It On Bloomington plan. She thinks that initiative starts on projects but then dies out. Her plan is to follow through. She also believes downtown is a diamond. She envisions Downtown Bloomington as place not just for college students on the weekend. She would like to see a family friendly park, a dog park, or a square that can be flooded in the winter for ice-skating. She believes in repairing the relationship between Bloomington and the Town of Normal by opening the communication between the two. She believes that downtown is missing senior housing, but not a West Minster Village. She also wants to work with the owners of Front N Center to see what can be done together instead of having developers tell the town what it wants.
Tari Renner was not available for the DGNA meeting because he was driving his son to graduate school in North Carolina, but Carlo Robustelli spoke on his behalf. Carlo is supporting the current mayor for re-election because Carlo believes in the mayor’s term he has improved the city infrastructure and made the city more accessible by improving communication. Carlo believes the city staff is more responsive since Tari has been in office. Before Tari, there were 50 vacancies on committees and boards and Tari is committed to diversity. Bring It On Bloomington nationally recognized for the amount of people (over 6,000) that it engaged. Carlo imagines that with another term as mayor he will have time to implement the plan. Carlo also thinks that Tari was a partner to Green Top Grocery to get it going. Carlo will be hosting a Meet & Greet with Mayor Renner on February 7th at 7:00 pm at his home at 401 E Grove. He also wanted to remind residents that the primary election will be held on February 28th.
DGNA will be celebrating it’s 30-year anniversary in June and July of this year.
The DGNA subgroups each presented a report of their recent activity. Ken Kashian for goal 5 reported that his group has been working on signage for neighborhood walking tours. Signs would be short and to the point and would be similar to a traffic sign in the park (brown and white) color scheme. He has priced out a couple of options one for printed or vinyl signs which range between $25 and $30 or bronze signs that are $100 and upwards in cost. Neighbors would like to see the DGNA website or the DGNA logo added to the sign. He also proposed the creation of a website committee.
Donnie Johnson for goal 3 or safety and engagement reported that they have reached out to all block captains and wants to renew communications with those block captains and discuss what a block captain’s job is. They would also like to have meetings with those captains periodically. A newsletter should be coming out in the Spring and the Fall to all neighbors. Donnie has taken over block captain chair from Pam Eaton.
Dawn Peters, with goal 2 increasing home ownership, has been working with Barry Reilly from District 87. He is willing to attend a DGNA meeting and discuss how we can promote Sheridan as the neighborhood school.
Carlo, fundraising, presented his idea for a brick oven pizza party. He would make the pizzas and there would be a table for donations. The oven is $200 to rent and also $150 for supplies. Neighbors hoped that this would align with the neighborhood flea market and the steam punk festival.
The Winter Traveling social does not have a date yet, but neighbors believe Jamie Mathy was willing to host.
The DGNA Flea market will be the first weekend of June. The date is set for June 3 and is from 9 am until 3 pm.
Gary Justis will be taking over all 3 seasons for the DGNA Adopt-A-Pot.
Pam Eaton would like Dimmitt’s Grove to be the first adopter of the “Welcome Signs” that are sweeping across the country. The signs are written in three languages and the goal is to let people know that they are welcome no matter where they are from. She has ordered 100 signs and will be taking names of people interested. The signs are $10 and the proceeds will be split between DGNA and Western Ave. Community Center.
Brad Williams presented the Safety report. There were a lot of people at the police chief’s meeting discussing the police substation on West Jefferson.
The next meeting will be at 512 E Taylor.