By CATHERINE NEWHOUSE
The North Central Columbia Neighborhood Association elected 12 of a possible 15 board members at their annual meeting Saturday afternoon. The meeting also included a Q&A discussion with First Ward Councilman Fred Schmidt.
Of the previous 15 board members, 11 ran for reelection, one was present but did not run and three did not attend. The only new board member was Zach Rubin, who also became an association member at the meeting.
Acting president Tracy Greever-Rice was among the three absent board members, whom the group decided to contact to see if they were still interested in running for this year’s board. Board members can be added at any time until the board reaches 15 members.
The board’s officers, including the president and other positions, will be elected at the monthly meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 10, in the Cougar Room of Columbia College’s Dulany Hall, 600 N. Eighth St.
About 24 people attended Saturday’s annual meeting, including four police officers, First Ward Councilman Fred Schmidt, 17 association members and new member Zach Rubin. Former president John Clark, who was removed in March, was present.
Before the election, the association held a Q&A discussion with Schmidt, who said he was looking for ideas about how to reach out to people who might not normally vote or participate in a neighborhood association.
“I don’t think it works to just have office hours and people come,” Schmidt said.
The group also discussed an ordinance calling for a special election in August about increasing stormwater utility charges with Schmidt. Former President John Clark said the vote on the ordinance should be delayed until November to allow for the new city manager’s input, and association member Mike Martin agreed.
“I think this demonstrates that we’d like to chat with you on a regular basis,” board member Pat Fowler said to Schmidt after the discussion. Schmidt had said earlier in the meeting that he would come to some of the association’s monthly meetings.
Toward the end of the meeting, Adam Saunders from the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture gave a presentation about his organization and the urban agriculture movement. Saunders said he wants to sell produce at the organization’s urban farm, but would need commercial zoning to do so. In the meantime, the organization is selling vegetables at Patchwork Family Farms at 1108 Rangeline St. starting Monday, May 16. The possible rezoning will be discussed more at the next meeting on Tuesday, May 10.
Board Members After Saturday’s Election:
- Dan Cullimore
- Pat Fowler
- Mat Harrison
- Linda Rootes
- Zach Rubin
- Adam Saunders
- Joan Sullivan
- Sid Sullivan
- Sarah Taylor
- Rose Whittington
- Jeannie Wyble
- Amir Ziv