GACA Board Meeting – October 11, 2023

Minutes
Glebe Annex Community Association (GACA)
Board Meeting – Wednesday, October 11, 2023, 7 p.m.
Present: Joanne Benoit, Laurent Carbonneau, Marni Crossley, Gabrielle Dallaporta, David Perkins, Sue Stefko, Scott Templeton
1. Call to Order and Approval of Agenda – Laurent
Laurent called the meeting to order at 7:03 p.m. The agenda for the meeting, which was shared in advance, was approved without objections.
2. Approval of the Minutes from September 13th – Laurent
Laurent raised the minutes from the previous meeting held on September 13th. The group reviewed the minutes, which were shared in advance, and no amendments or corrections were raised. The minutes were approved as presented.
3. Business Arising from the Meeting of September 13th – Laurent
Laurent opened the floor for any business arising from the minutes of the last meeting. No points were raised.
4. General discussion – Laurent
Community clean-up:
  • Discussed the success of and feedback on the community clean-up event.
Fire on Cambridge St South:
  • Discussed the recent fire on Cambridge St South and other incidents in the past year.
  • Discussed engaging with fire services to gather statistics.
  • Discussed the raising fire prevention in a future newsletter, as a safety update, to keep the community informed.
5. Safety report – Joanne
Joanne provided a safety update, which included a meeting Ryan had with Constable Stephanie Lemieux on September 25th.
  • Noted that police resources are limited and that the lack of reporting might affect resource allocation.
  • There has been a significant increase in calls from Bell Street, from 50 to 180 in the first half of the year.
  • The possibility of starting a community watch program was revisited. Constable Lemieux suggested this as a potential way to increase community engagement.
  • More information will be sought, which may include fire services.
Neighbourhood watch: Discussed an informal watch program. Sue raised previous ideas considered by the board. Marni described how the Lakelander Condominium has developed an “agent status” for police to patrol their area. David offered to record issues and expressed his willingness to collaborate with other board members.
Downtown Safety:  There was a general concern about safety in the Glebe Annex, which reflects the broader concerns of the Ottawa downtown core. There was an acknowledgment that certain behaviours exhibited on the streets are leading residents to take additional personal safety precautions, such as avoiding certain areas or altering their paths of travel.
Community self-help: The need of community self-help was emphasized, highlighting accountability and better information sharing. Despite the challenges and limited capacity, the board recognized the need for more community involvement.
6. Community survey results – Gabrielle
Discussed the recent summer community survey conducted via SurveyMonkey. The survey aimed to gauge the community’s preferences and opinion on various topics.
  • Most respondents appreciated proximity to the downtown core, and walkability.
  • Traffic was a top concern, followed by green space and safety.
  • Regarding transportation, walking was the primary mode for 84% of respondents.
  • Some expressed a need for improved public transportation.
  • The “parties in the park” events were viewed very positively.
Gabrielle suggested including some highlights from the survey in an upcoming newsletter.
7. Halloween Event – Sue
Planning for the Halloween event was discussed. It will include a photo booth, candy table, DJ, and a large screen for displaying spooky imagery.
  • The planning team includes Sue, Joanne, and Gabrielle. Morris, a former GACA Board member, will be the DJ.
  • Considerations for weather were made, and it was noted that the event would be rain or shine.
  • A call was made for volunteers to assist with the event. While there is good coverage already, additional support would be welcome.
  • Financial considerations were presented, with a budget up to $250, accounting for various costs such as DJ services, decorations, printing of posters, and treats.
Motion: A motion was passed without objection to allocate a budget of up to $250 for the event.
8. Councillor’s update – Jonathan
The update was deferred to the next meeting, as the Councillor’s office was attending a public meeting on the future of Lansdowne Park.
9. Adjournment
The meeting was adjourned at 8:04 p.m.

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