May 2010

Gifford Park Association

General Membership Meeting Minutes, May 20, 2010

355 E. Chicago St., Room 240


Attending: Jeff Jacobson, Tony Sanchez, Bill Briska, David & Jennifer Williams, Evan Hennessey, Julie Schmitt, Dan & Pat Miller, Jay Kjellander, Barb Counterman, Doug Tomsha, John & Carol Anderson, Amanda Carlson, Jamie Carrigan, Donna Leetz, Curt Coletti, Deborah Allen, ROPE Officer Eric Echevarria

Guests: Alex & Christina Carter, and city councilman Mike Warren


Meeting was called to order at 7:05 p.m.


Jeff’s Handouts and Announcements:

Handouts included a copy of the Elgin Parks & Rec 2010 Summer Programs booklet, available at city hall.  Also a request that the city needs volunteers for the 4th of July parade, as well as an article (with photos) from the annual Elgin Police Memorial event.


Secretary’s Report:

Motion to approve the minutes of March 18, 2010 by Barb Counterman, seconded by Evan Hennessey. The motion carried.


Treasurer’s Report:

Evan Hennessey reported $41,815.74 in our checking account, $176.00 in our PayPal account, and $53,736.57 in our money market account.


ROPE Officer’s Report:

Eric Echevarria indicated that activity had picked up in the neighborhood with the warm weather.  He also discussed issues related to registered sex offenders, passing around a list, and asking everyone to remain vigilant.

Dan Miller thanked Eric for his participation with the May 1 Great Unveiling event, as well as Doug Tomsha, Jeff Jacobson, Dan & Pat Miller, Chuck Behrens, Rebecca Hunter, Tom Krebsbach, and Jeff McIntyre.

As always, if you have questions or concerns about activity in the neighborhood, contact Eric directly at:

[email protected]

Or: (847) 354-3394


Standing Committee Reports:



Chair Alicia Lykins not in attendance.  No report.


Chair Barb Counterman reminded everyone that the second annual GPA (membership-ONLY) plant swap is Saturday 5/22/10 from 9 a.m. – noon at the Andersons’ house, 384 Division St.

Barb is also working on a fire prevention program for October.


Historic District

Chair Laura Jacobson not in attendance.  Jeff Jacobson announced the 2010 summer porch party dates and solicited volunteers.  The dates are:

June 11, June 25, July 9, July 23, and August 6.



Carol Anderson reported that site selection was complete, and options for the after-party were being researched.


Public Relations

Chair Dan Miller had nothing to report.


May 28, 2010 Golf Classic:

Chair Jay Kjellander indicated that everything was set to go for the second annual event.  He encouraged everyone to attend the after-dinner, even if they aren’t playing in the event.  After-dinner tickets are $25, and can be purchased via PayPal.   Jay promised lots of exciting raffle prizes to be given away at the dinner.  Jay will be participating in a radio interview about the event.


Turkey Trot:

Chair Amanda Carlson reported that a website for the event should be ready by Memorial Day.  She also reported that upon further review, minor revisions to the original planned route would serve to save costs and allow the route to pass through the historic district.

To volunteer to assist with the project, please contact Amanda Carslon:

[email protected]

(630) 400-6687


NSP Program:

Jennifer Fritz-Williams from the City of Elgin Community Development Department reported that funds from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (funded by the federal Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008), had been used to buy several properties (listed below) for redevelopment, with more hopefully to follow.  The city has already issued RFQ’s for architects, with plans due back to the city by the end of June.  The city will begin soliciting bids for contractors in July.  To date, properties bought in our area include 457 E. Chicago, 463 E. Chicago, 485 E. Chicago, 222 Villa, and 108-110 S. Channing.


Pocket Park Bid:

Jeff Jacobson presented Bill Witte’s bid for seasonal maintenance of 28 corner plantings and the pocket park.  The bid was $1,818.  John Anderson moved to approve the bid; Donna Leetz seconded.  The motion carried.

Jeff indicated he would solicit bids for repair and repainting of the park benches and fencing.


140 N. Channing:

Tony Sanchez moved that Jeff Jacobson write a letter to City of Elgin management notifying them of GPA’s desire to divest itself of involvement in the redevelopment of the property at 140 N. Channing, so the city can move forward on the project.

Jamie Carrigan seconded.

The motion carried, with Jennifer Fritz-Williams abstaining from the vote.


June / July Meetings:

Due to the summer holidays, the U-46 school building will not be available for meetings.  Anyone with suggestions for a meeting place should contact Jeff Jacobson.

[email protected]

(630) 391-1236


Other Comments & Concerns:

Jennifer Williams reported that an RFQ for architects had been issued for 114-116 N. Channing.  She also reminded everyone of the tall grass ordinance.


David Williams indicated that the city is looking to partner with various community organizations for its summer concerts in the park, which take place in Wing Park and Lord’s Park.


Mike Warren told everyone of Public Works’ Touch-a-Truck event on Saturday 5/22.

He also reported an upcoming event, the Together We’re Elgin Community Cookout event to take place from 12-5 on Saturday, June 5 at City Centre Plaza.


Congratulations to Dan & Pat Miller on their purchase of 165 S. Gifford.  Dan & Pat plan a thorough rehabilitation of the property.  Good luck to them!


Motion to adjourn:

Moved by Donna Leetz, seconded by Evan Williams (per Jennifer Williams).  Motion carried with meeting adjourning at 8:13 p.m.  After-meeting continued in room 240.


Reminder: The June general membership meeting will be in a different location, to be announced.


Next general membership meeting is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, 6/17/10.


Recorded by David Williams, Secretary