August 8, 2013
A meeting of the Northeast Citizens Advisory Council (NECAC) was held on Thursday, August 8, 2013, at the Marsh Creek Community Center, 3050 New Hope Road, Raleigh. Chairperson Michi Vojta presided. The meeting was called to order at 7:06pm.
Parks and Recreation Report: Heather O’Brien outlined various activities currently underway and upcoming. Among the new activities starting in September are African dance classes on Saturdays and new exercise classes. Updated brochures will be available on line.
Community Inspections: Chris Boyd, City of Raleigh Inspections, Housing and Environment Division, talked about various public nuisance issues to which the city Inspections Department responds, including over-grown grass, deserted vehicles, junk, etc. Also included are any nuisance issues that can be viewed from the street. Complaints may be made on line.
Police Report: Officer George Porter reported on two major crime issues of concern. One is daytime residential burglaries in the Buffaloe Road area. Residents are encouraged to be observant of unusual activity and vehicles and call police, particularly when observing an older model Crown Victoria during the day in the neighborhood, believed to be used by the burglary suspects. Porter also strongly encouraged the installation of home burglar alarm systems as being the most effective crime deterrent.
The other crime on the rise involves buy and sell transactions initiated via social media. Porter urged caution in such transactions and advised such transactions should take place in well-lighted public locations.
Porter also discussed safety precautions when using the Raleigh Greenway, namely:
- Partner – never walk alone
- Cell phones – particularly women should carry cell phones to call for help
- Awareness – observe location markers and landmarks in order to identify your location when calling for help
Whenever or whatever the need, call 911 for help. In non-emergency cases, call 919-831-6311.
Community Services: Kevin Smith told about the Neighborhood Awards which will be presented October 16 at the Five Points Center for Active Adults. Each CAC is invited to submit a nominee and the public is welcome.
He also encouraged Wake County residents to attend the annual Neighborhood Exchange workshop on Saturday, September 21, at the McKimmon Center. Breakout sessions will include:
– ABCs of Neighborhood Traffic Calming: Putting the brakes on neighborhood traffic problems;
– Neighborhood Success Stories: We Did it!;
– Neighborhood Leaders Training: Building Blocks for Neighborhood Leadership; and,
– Do “U” know the UDO?: What it Is and What it Means for MY Community.
There will also be Teen Sessions, with the following topics:
– Youth Voices: Community and Civic Engagement through Technology; and
– Making, Spending and Saving Money the Right Way — Teen Financial Literacy.
In addition, there will be Spanish Sessions with the following topics:
– Out of School: What to Do with My Children on Their Free Time?; and,
– Welcome to the Neighborhood: Be a Homeowner
Many City of Raleigh departments and non-profit organizations will have exhibits.
Registration is $10 which includes continental breakfast and luncheon with speaker Zinith Barbee, a 25-year resident of the Mordecai neighborhood, who will describe his journey from caring little about community involvement to someone who traveled a path helping others and himself.
City of Raleigh Budget Report: Kirsten Larson made a power-point presentation of the newly adopted City budget of $707.8 million. Among the subjects addressed were finance sustainability, budget priorities (emphasis on superior citizen services), revenue sources, and major expenditures.
Some interesting points included
- tax sources: 27 per cent from property taxes (no increase) and four per cent from sales taxes
- expenditures: 21 percent in public safety; work force (increased programs and staff, health care, etc.); equipment acquisition and maintenance
- Merit pay increases based on performance evaluations
- Details of the city’s budget are available on city’s web site: www.raleighnc.gov and go to Adopted Budget.
City of Raleigh Critical Public Safety Facility: David L. York and David Francis presented details of the proposed four-story public safety facility to be located at the intersection of Brentwood Road and Westinghouse Boulevard. It will house the Emergency Management Center, Emergency Communications Center (including 911 emergency operations) and the Emergency Operations Center. Also, the Traffic Control Center/Remote Operations, the Data Center and Homeland Security offices will be housed in the new facility.
Priority factors considered include the highest level of security, low maintenance, smart use of taxpayer funds, latest technology and future needs.
Southeast Raleigh Assembly, Inc.: Quintin Murphy, representing SERA, Inc., due to time restrictions, gave a brief overview the organization and distributed information about the organization and various educational workshops being offered free to the public.
September 10 – Choosing the Right Foods to Eat and Why It Matters – first of four sessions
September 11 – In Celebration of Southeast Raleigh Senior Citizens
September 12 – Quality of Life – Life Mapping
September 19 – Business Planning
September 26 – Quality of Life – Visioning and Goal Setting
Additional information is available at southeastraleigh.org.
Z-4-13 Update: The Raleigh City Council voted to send Z-4-13 back to its original petition. The developers have agreed to remove a gas station from their application and submit revised conditions at the September 3 meeting of the Planning Commission.
It was agreed that this zoning application continued to warrant cautious and continued attention. Vojta will keep the community informed of proceedings.
Neighborhood Reports: Residents of the Cardinal Grove subdivision are concerned about traffic speed through their neighborhood. Traffic humps in addition to 25-mph speed limit signs are among the options being considered.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:45 pm