Monday, August 24th , 2015
33 Mill St, 6th Floor at 6:30 p.m.
- Phylis Coles (President)
- Hamida Hassanzada (Social Committee Chair)
- Salim Jamal (Vice-President – Communications Chair)
- Corinne Bryers (70 Mill Street Representative)
- Claudia Pardo (Secretary)
- Keith Veira (Director at Large)
- Lester Brown (Past President)
- Jose Castillo (Membership Chair & 390 Cherry Street Representative)
- Marien Breen (Representative for 80 Mill Street)
- Ilda Caldwell (Representative for 70 Distillery Ln)
- Parrish Offer (Director at Large – Communications)
- Sheila Iseman (Treasurer)
- Julie Beddoes (Development Committee VP)
- Susan Kushneryk
- George Hume (Representative for 39 Parliament)
- Kenneth Yim (Representative for 33 Mill St)
- Arella Sohn
Phylis Coles, President, called the meeting to order at 6:40 p.m. assumed the Chair. With the consent of the meeting, Claudia Pardo, was appointed Recording Secretary for the meeting.
2.1 Treasurer’s Report – Sheila Iseman
- We have in the bank a total of $4,194.70
- So far this year we’ve taken in:
- $1,675.50 in individual memberships
- $1,507.50 in corporate memberships
- Total income for 2015 is $3,183
- Total expenses for 2015 are $2,098.23
- Balance for 2015 is $1,084.77
- 188 members
- 69 have renewed
- The $20 difference has been cleared out.
- Sheila mentions there’s a lot of renters who couldn’t care less about what happens in the community. Some of them might come for some community support but we need to provide them with value to them as well to get them committed.
- Proposal to have presence at the lobby of each building to get more members. The best time would be in October, so you can sell the membership that’s good through December 2016.
- Arella asks how many residents there are in the Distillery? There might be 3,000, but there’s no confirmed number.
- Out of all the residents we have, our membership is low compared to what we could have. Arella asks again, what’s the answer when people asks “what’s in it for me?” and the first thing that comes to mind is “discounts at restaurants”. We’re known in politic grounds, but we’re failing in connecting with the community.
- Arella proposes that we make sure to let people know about what we’ve done for the community. Julie, will provide a list of all our achievements as Association.
- We’ve migrated to a host provider with more real time support.
- 3 years renewal has been paid for
- The website address “www.gwna.ca” has been secured until 2021
- Phylis, talks about the brochure. Since we still haven’t decided about changes in branding, this has to come together with the decision we make in this regard. Proposal is to have 2 samples of the brochure for people to vote on. Ideally if we can have the samples before September 21 for people to vote on it would be great. It must include all information about membership and proposal for payment. Additional options for payment are PayPal and Stripe, but the GWNA will still be charged with either platform, even if we’re considered non-profit. There’s no upfront cost for GWNA, it’s just charged per transaction.
- For PayPal it’s $0 per month on a corporate account but:
- If we don’t qualify for non-for-profit fees, the standard transaction fees are 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction, so on a $15 membership it works out to $0.435 + $0.30 for a total of $0.74 which seems ok.
- If we get the non-for-profit qualification, the fees are 1.6%. That means $0.20 in savings for a $15 membership.
- Stripe has a similar structure to PayPal by taking a portion of the transaction still $0 per month for a corporate account but they don’t have the non-for-profit or for-profit distinction. PayPal is more known and recognized online.
Proposal to for the member’s names on the brochure to not show, but only the positions: President, Vice-President etc, so they can be as generic as possible. Use the brochure to direct people to the website to see who the members are. The brochure will be provided to the Communications Committee for them to come up with 2 samples.
MOTION to present the new brochure at the 21 September meeting. Julie moves, Corinne seconded it.
- Q: Arella asks in case someone else needs to update the site, if it’s easily accessible for another administrator.
- Q: Julie asks about the archives and records of documents of the Association, if they are being kept (mainly minutes and committees reports).
- Q: Notices: it would be worth to have them also accessible to download and post them on Facebook.
- Q: Arella asks if protocol from now on with District News, should it be to send it to the Communications Committee for it to upload it once it’s ready?
Answer: It’s not written on stone, but yes, it can be done that way. The idea is that each committee deals with its own pieces.
- Current vision and mission seems incomplete. Vision is aspirational and not necessarily has to connect with what the GWNA is.
- Proposed text for GWNA’s Vision: “The Historic Distillery District will be the model for showcasing how history, business and residents can live in harmony”
- Feedback about proposed vision paragraph from Parrish:
- Exists to enhance and protect the residents of the Distillery District.
- The historic Distillery District will be
- Proposed text for GWNA’s Mission: “GWNA is a unified voice that represents the interests of the residents of the Distillery District”
- It was proposed to just have a statement that’s both a vision and the mission
- Our representation is mainly for the residents, not the businesses
- The Distillery District is a historic area and it makes a big difference. We want to protect heritage.
- Julie and Parrish will get together and think about the mission and vision. It will be used for our written material and it will be presented at the AGM for it to be our permanent one.
Are there adjustments in the priorities of Communications Department? Meaning if they should give priority to specific tasks that need to be completed (website, brochure, branding, etc). Continue having social media interaction with the community. The idea is to compliment the email channel, not to replace it.
Julie insists that it’s important to have a moderator in Social Media.
Do we have terms and conditions for Facebook? Answer: Julie says there’s one for Listserv. Review if Facebook has one.
Are we in agreement that it would be good to establish priorities to make things flow a lot better? Yes. Do we need a motion in this sense for the September 21st meeting? No.
If any of us have ideas, suggestions about the vision, mission or any of the tasks of the Communications’ Committee, please send them to Julie and Parrish, copying Salim as Chair of the Committee.
We need a new membership form with larger fields to provide to people so they can read properly.
Are we interested in creating correspondence to retailers? Especially before Christmas? The idea would be to send a Christmas card with the brochure for example so we can enhance our presence and exposure, and businesses know who we are and what we do. The idea is that the Social Committee takes on this type of task.
Keith proposes that we can prepare something for the Distillery District to use it on their website and leverage on the relationship. Ask if we can send the brochure for it to be included in the Distillery District events’ page. Phylis will look into this.
Should we chase advertising and get businesses to advertise and if so, charge them? Keith proposes that we have specific templates for different types of advertising so businesses can choose from and try to automate the process.
Salim explains that about a year and a half ago, this was discussed. They proposed to have a better looking, more colorful piece that people feel attracted to. Salim proposes that we can take the merchants online first and do some cross-promoting with the businesses and what we collect we can use it for the print version of the Distillery District News.
Phylis explains that for the District News we need the tools to make it more appealing but also Arella needs support. Marien Breen offered herself to help Arella.
Keith asks if we know any teachers or persons at the colleges and universities that surround us so the students can get involved with writing about the area and take advantage of that.
Phylis proposes that someone, maybe Jane, writes about how well the Pan Am activities worked for the residents of the Distillery District.
2.4 Development Committee – Julie Beddoes, Keith Veira
Here is the Development Committee report; updates from last month are in red. Please note our proposal that GWNA invite the Gardiner East EA team to a meeting to present the options before a public meeting later this year.
Cityscape application: Comment from Tom Davidson: City Planning and the applicants have met and discussed the issues raised during the public consultation. No firm recommendations have come out of that work, but there are more perspectives on how to proceed. We (ie councillor's office) are recommending that we reconvene a working group format session with the GWNA and building representatives to discuss the issue. We'll consult with GWNA on how to organize that later in the summer.
In conversation on August 19th, Tom confirmed that working group meetings would be open to community members. He will discuss possibility of larger information session with Henry Tang; Perhaps best not to get people out to a meeting unless there is something concrete to discuss,
Lower Yonge Precinct Plan: Julie Beddoes is GWNA rep on SAC. Ahead of completion of plan, Pinnacle developments are going to OMB to ask for much taller buildings than plan would allow. Julie will talk to Willie Macrae about this site and report later in month. Otherwise much to like about the plan.
Willie Macrae says Pinnacle is not pressing its OMB case for the Star site, ie 1 Yonge St. and block north of it up to the expressway and railway; have agreed to major section 37 contributions: fully paid for rec centre with pool, good-sized park, public space incorporated into grade level of development.
Mill St. refurbishing: City staff have been working on technicalities, budget, etc. Working group will meet soon. Jane Robinson and Phylis Coles are on list to be invited. Gobnait McAnoy, who lives in 70 Mill St., will also attend. Tom says people working on the technicalities have been seconded to other jobs. He is pushing to get the working group together ASAP.
Lower Don River and the Port Lands Jane Robinson will continue as GWNA rep onPort Lands issues with Julie Beddoes as alternate. SAC meeting on Villiers Island is imminent. See article in Globe and Mail later this week.
Globe story didn't say much about Toronto. Still waiting for further SAC for Villiers Island.
Future of the Gardiner East EA: Report of Council decisions is athttp://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2015.PW4.1
The EA stakeholder advisory committee will meet on July 21. The EA is a statutory process under provincial law. It seems unlikely that the options city staff have been asked to study and report on in September will conform to the Terms of Reference of the EA nor will they have been subject to the lengthy process of public consultation required. It is hoped that SAC members will be updated on the relationship of the city studies and the EA process.
See this article by John Lorinc, Spacing magazine:
July 21 SAC meeting looked at numerous tentative plans for "hybrid" option; none of them improved conditions west of Cherry. SAC will be presented with further work on options on September 1. PWIC later in month, public meeting in November. Development committee proposes that board approve inviting the EA team to present options to a GWNA meeting before they go to a public meeting later in the year. If the timing works out it could be at the November meeting; if not, we could hold a special meeting.
Island Airport Runway Extension EA: Terms of reference stage of study is complete. Draft report on work to that date will go to Council in the fall. It is expected that the final report will go to Council in spring 2016.
First Parliament Working Group: Lester Brown and Gobnait McAnoy are GWNA reps.
Tom Davidson explains: The Environmental Assessment work by the consultants has been completed. Our office is organizing a working group meeting to review the results of this work and update on the timelines for a workplan, and beginning a Master Plan process. We are prepared to hold a meeting in Mid August, otherwise it would have to be in mid September. We'll advise you shortly on this after we talk a bit more.
No working group meeting called so far.
Relief Line: TTC has presented on this to the GWNA May meeting and covered technical and route issues. Keith twice forwarded link to consultation site to GWNA listserv so that members may express their opinion. Report should go to Council in December 2015 or early 2016. Staff are working on reviewing results of consultations so far. Will soon ask for input on potential alignments.
Aitken Place Park: George Hume is GWNA representative on the stakeholder committee and will post final design when available
3. Guest Speakers:
We still don’t have a speaker for the meeting of September 21st. Phylis proposes that Parrish can show the slides about population in the Distillery District.
For our October 19th meeting, someone from Dream will come to talk about future of the sites they’re going to develop.
November 16th, is our November meeting. We might have special meeting to address just the Gardiner topic in case they’re not ready for our November meeting.
Sheila and Keith suggest that we should have someone from the Humane Society to talk about dogs and responsibilities of having a dog (Responsible Dog Ownership).
11. Next Meeting:
September 21st. at 6:30PM at 70 Distillery Ln
12. Meeting Closed