2023 Board Minutes

Content Classification: 

2023-01-15

Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association 

Board Meeting Minutes

 Date: January 15th, 2023

Board Members:  Steve Beckman (Secretary), John Hays, Jeff Johnson (President), Matthew Kazmierski (Vice President), Gail Lytle Lira (Communications), Pat Poli, Alice Schehr (Treasurer), Mark Warner, Steve Whelan

Call to order: Jeff Johnson called to order this meeting of the Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association Executive Committee at 4:04pm ET on January 15th, 2023 at 217 Oakland Dr.

Roll Call:

  • Present: Steve Beckman (Secretary), John Hays, Jeff Johnson (President), Matthew Kazmierski (Vice President), Gail Lytle Lira (Communications), Pat Poli, Alice Schehr (Treasurer), Mark Warner, Steve Whelan

  • Absent: None

  • Quorum present: Yes

Approval of Past Minutes: A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the Board meeting held on 2022-10-02 as presented. The motion carried without objection.

Treasurer Updates: 

  1. Alice provided a financial summary for 2022. The current BHNA account balance is $3,567. Deposits from donations and annual dues totaled $1,595, and expenses, which included two tree replacements, totaled $1,675. 

    1. Raising annual dues from $20 to $25 to help cover increased expenses for tree replacements and luminaries will be discussed in future meetings

  2. Garden Tour

    1. Would like to repeat the event this year to help raise funds. Need to identify an appropriate date to maximize neighborhood plant growth.

Old Business:

  1. Publishing of draft meeting minutes

    1. A motion was made and seconded to publish meeting minutes from annual meetings and Board meetings to the BHNA website before they have been formally approved at an annual meeting or Board meeting. The motion carried without objection.

      1. Such minutes will be labeled with the word "DRAFT" on the website until after they have been formally approved in a meeting.

  2. Approval of annual meeting minutes from 2022-09-18

    1. A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the annual meeting held on 2022-09-18 as presented. The motion carried without objection.

  3. Approval of board meeting minutes from 2022-07-28

    1. A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the board meeting held on 2022-07-28 as presented. The motion carried without objection.

  4. Neighborhood covenant modification

    1. Jeff commented that someone recently mentioned to him that the approval of Michigan Public Act 234 of 2022 could assist with the removal of the unenforceable language in our neighborhood covenants

      1. The language of Act 234 states that individual property owners may file to remove the language from their individual property deeds. It also states that a simple majority of a homeowners or property owners association board, or a simple majority of an association of co-owners of a condominium, may file to remove the language from covenants that apply to an entire association.

        1. Neighborhood associations such as BHNA are not specifically identified and it is assumed that a simple majority of the BHNA board could not file to remove the language from the covenants that apply to the entire neighborhood. Therefore, efforts will continue to obtain signatures from 100% of neighborhood property owners to remove the language from our neighborhood covenants.

    2. Signed affidavits from over 50 property owners are still needed. Steve Beckman mailed them updated letters on 2023-01-13 that included a printed copy of the current covenant language. A prepaid stamped envelope addressed to Steve’s house was included for the owners to return the signed form. 

  5. BHNA document storage

    1. Jeff will ask in the next meeting of East Lansing neighborhood associations if there is a central or shared location where other associations store their official documents.

  6. Winter street luminaries

    1. People that were outdoors in the neighborhood during the event had a universally positive response. It is believed that the expense was justified and the event would be approved again next winter.

New Business:

  1. Accessory dwelling units proposal

    1. The East Lansing City Council is considering an Accessory Dwelling Units policy that would allow property owners to add additional dwellings on their property for residents or rentals in the form of additions on a house and detached buildings

      1. Such dwellings would violate the current neighborhood covenants

        1. Jeff will remind the City Council member that attends the next monthly meeting of neighborhood associations that our neighborhood covenants would prevent them

Open Discussion:

  • Steve Whelan mentioned that the East Lansing Police Department responded to a recent incident in the neighborhood that had non-specific information about it publicly available on crimemapping.com. That information was shared on our neighborhood Facebook group page. It was determined that the incident was isolated and did not represent a danger to the neighborhood, so the moderators of the Facebook group removed the post. Facebook group moderators should evaluate future posts of that nature to determine if they should remain or be removed based on their impact on neighborhood residents. Steve shared that Officer Wright is the ELPD District 15 liaison, which includes our neighborhood, and they can be contacted at any time if there are questions or concerns.

Action Items: 

Name

Action

Deadline

All

Discuss raising annual BHNA dues from $20 to $25

2023-04-16

Jeff

Comment in the next meeting of neighborhood associations that accessory dwellings would be in violation of our neighborhood covenants

TBD

Jeff

Ask in the next meeting of neighborhood associations if there is a central, shared, or public location where other associations store their official documents

TBD

Alice

Identify date for the next neighborhood Garden Tour

2023-04-16

Adjournment:

  • A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting at 4:50pm ET. The motion carried without objection.

Next Meeting Date, Time, and Location: Sunday, April 16th, 2023, at 4:00pm, location to be determined

Minutes submitted by: Steve Beckman

Minutes approved by: Board motion during meeting held on 2023-04-16

Content Classification: 

2023-04-16

Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association 

Board Meeting Minutes

Date: April 16th, 2023


Board Members:  Steve Beckman (Secretary), John Hays, Jeff Johnson (President), Matthew Kazmierski (Vice President), Gail Lytle Lira (Communications), Pat Poli, Alice Schehr (Treasurer), Mark Warner, Steve Whelan

Call to order: Jeff Johnson called to order this meeting of the Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association Executive Committee at 4:07pm ET on April 16th, 2023 at 144 Maplewood Dr.


Roll Call:

  • Present: Steve Beckman (Secretary), Jeff Johnson (President), Alice Schehr (Treasurer), Pat Poli, Matthew Kazmierski (Vice President), John Hays, Mark Warner, Steve Whelan, Gail Lytle Lira (Communications)

  • Absent: None

  • Quorum present: Yes


Approval of Past Minutes: A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the Board meeting held on January 15th, 2023 as presented. The motion was carried without objection.


Treasurer Updates: 

  1. Alice stated the association’s current account balance is $3,431

  2. Alice informed Pat Robinson that there are sufficient funds for additional tree replacements if needed


Old Business:

  1. Raising annual neighborhood association dues

    1. Make it a point of action at this year’s annual meeting in September to propose a vote to increase the annual dues from $20 to $25 to compensate for increased costs and inflation

  2. 2023 Neighborhood Garden Tour

    1. Alice will help organize the event and is targeting Sunday, July 16th from 1-4pm

    2. Alice will contact neighborhood residents asking for participants

    3. Would like printed brochures that list the participating addresses and describe their gardens

      1. Alice will contact Nella Davis-Ray and Judy Putnam, who helped create the previous brochures

      2. Alice will identify an item that can be placed in the front yard of participating houses

      3. A motion was made and seconded to approve of Alice spending of up to $150 from the association’s account on materials for the 2023 Neighborhood Garden Tour. The motion was carried without objection.

        1. Donations made to the association during the previous Neighborhood Garden Tour exceeded the amount that was spent on materials and was deposited in the association’s account. That is expected to occur again this year.

  3. Neighborhood covenants modification

    1. Steve Beckman printed and mailed letters, consent forms, and stamped return envelopes to 64 addresses that needed signed documents

      1. 21 of the 64 forms were returned (33%)

      2. Addresses still needing signed forms:

        1. (4) on East Grand River (43% complete)

        2. (14) on Maplewood (55% complete)

        3. (8) on North Hagadorn (20% complete)

        4. (7) on Oakland (75% complete)

        5. (5) on Roseland (72% complete)

      3. 56 of 94 total addresses have submitted signed forms (60%) with 38 still needed (40%)

      4. Steve Beckman spent $29.42 to print blank consent forms and letters to residents in 2022, $14.89 on updated letters with 2023 board member names, $21.50 on printouts of the existing neighborhood covenants text, and $84 on stamps. He will submit the receipts to Alice in order to be reimbursed $149.81 from the association’s account for those expenses.

    2. John, Steve Beckman, and Steve Whelan will work together to create a plan for visiting addresses that have not yet submitted signed forms in an attempt to get signatures and share it with the full board.

      1. Renewal of the covenants is due in 2024. Would be helpful to also have a renewal form available for signatures.

    3. The passage of Michigan House Bill 4416 (2021) makes it possible for individual property owners to pay $30 to file a form with the Ingham County Registrar of Deeds to have the language removed from their individual deed instead of relying on the neighborhood association. Information about the process will be shared with the neighborhood Facebook group.

  4. BHNA document storage

    1. Jeff asked in a recent meeting of East Lansing neighborhood associations if there is a central or shared location where other associations store their official physical documents and there currently is not one

  5. Accessory dwelling units proposal

    1. The East Lansing City Council is considering an Accessory Dwelling Units policy that would allow property owners to add additional dwellings on their property for residents or rentals in the form of additions on a house and detached buildings

      1. Such dwellings would violate the current neighborhood covenants

        1. City Council is aware of existing restrictions and the potential policy is still being debated


New Business:

  1. Potential website transition to https://www.eastlansingneighborhoods.com/

    1. Nella Davis-Ray notified the board that all other East Lansing neighborhood associations appear to use the site for posting their information publicly

      1. Board members will research the details and discuss the pros and cons of transitioning to that site in future meetings

  2. 2023 Annual Meeting

    1. Will be held on the second Sunday in September, which will be the 10th, with the rain date being the 17th

      1. Was held on Maplewood last year so will be held on Oakland this year. Jeff will contact the city to reserve the dates for blocking off the street.

    2. The board will hold an additional meeting on Wednesday 8/30 at a TBD time and place in order to finalize plans for the annual meeting

    3. Board terms for Jeff, John, and Steve Whelan end this year

      1. Need to recruit new potential members

    4. The meeting needs to be announced at least two weeks before the meeting date. Will be announced in the Facebook group and the newsletter.

      1. Send content ideas to Gayle by 8/1

        1. Initial ideas: Ask for new board members, recap the Garden Tour, covenant language removal process, fun facts about the neighborhood

  3. Community Issues

    1. Jeff reported that new 5G small cell wireless facilities could be added to the area. The nearest potential location would be near Cahill Rd. Information from the city can be found here: https://www.cityofeastlansing.com/2348/5G-Small-Cell

    2. The city is waiting for the hiring of a new City Manager before moving forward with several projects

      1. Construction of the new MSUFCU building downtown will not include additional parking structures, which will present a challenge to the existing parking facilities

    3. The sign that was in the park at the corner of E. Grand River and N. Hagadorn was in disrepair and has been removed by the city. No additional information regarding the sign is available at this time.

Open Discussion:

  • None


Action Items: 

 

Name

Action

Deadline

All

Discuss raising annual BHNA dues from $20 to $25

2023-04-16

All

Send newsletter content ideas to Gayle

2023-08-01

All

Identify potential new board members

2023-08-20

Alice

Begin planning for the Neighborhood Garden Tour

2023-06-30

John, Steve, Steve

Create plan for visiting addresses that have not submitted signed forms for amending the neighborhood covenants

2023-05-12

Jeff

Contact the city regarding the closure of Oakland Drive on the dates of the annual meeting

2023-08-20

Mark, Matt

Research the pros and cons of transitioning the association’s website information to https://www.eastlansingneighborhoods.com/

2023-08-20


Adjournment:

  • A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting at 5:05pm ET. The motion carried without objection.


Next Meeting Date, Time, and Location: Sunday, August 20th, 2023, at 4:00pm, location to be determined


Minutes submitted by: Steve Beckman

Minutes approved by: Board motion during meeting held on 2023-08-17.


 

Content Classification: 

2023-08-17

Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association 

Board Meeting Minutes

Date: August 17th, 2023

 

Board Members:  Steve Beckman (Secretary), John Hays, Jeff Johnson (President), Matthew Kazmierski (Vice President), Gail Lytle Lira (Communications), Pat Poli, Alice Schehr (Treasurer), Mark Warner, Steve Whelan

Call to order: Jeff Johnson called to order this meeting of the Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association Executive Committee at 7:02pm ET on August 17th, 2023 at 144 Maplewood Dr.

Roll Call:

  • Present: Steve Beckman (Secretary), Jeff Johnson (President), Matthew Kazmierski (Vice President), Alice Schehr (Treasurer), Pat Poli, John Hays, Steve Whelan, Gail Lytle Lira (Communications)

  • Absent: Mark Warner

  • Quorum present: Yes

  • Others in attendance: Denise Moore

Approval of Past Minutes: A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the Board meeting held on April 16th, 2023 as presented. The motion was carried without objection.

Treasurer Updates: 

  1. Alice stated the association’s current account balance is $3,664

  2. Alice spoke with Pat Robinson about adding street-level trees due to the account surplus. Pat said to have interested residents contact her directly to request additional trees.

Old Business:

  1. Raising annual neighborhood association dues

    1. Make it a point of action at this year’s annual meeting in September to propose a vote to increase the annual dues from $20 to $25 to compensate for increased costs and inflation

  2. 2023 Neighborhood Garden Tour

    1. $327 of the association’s funds were spent to print reusable yard signs for the event. $580 of donations were made. The event brought a $252 profit.

    2. Attendance was down over the previous garden tour. Inviting the Meridian Township Garden Club will be considered for future garden events.

  3. Neighborhood covenants modification and renewal

    1. Steve Beckman reported that 37 addresses still need to sign consent forms to modify the covenants. Steve will review property owner records for addresses that have already signed to determine if owners have changed, which would necessitate document signatures by the new property owners.

    2. Several board members volunteered to visit addresses that do not currently have a signed agreement. Steve provided printed documents for them to use.

    3. Renewal of the covenants is due July 20, 2024. Signed documents to renew the covenants need to be obtained from 2/3rds of property owners and notarized, but consent documents to modify the covenants only need to include signatures from witnesses.

      1. The previous documents that were signed to renew the covenants use a date with the year 2020. Those signed documents likely need to be replaced in order to be accepted by the Ingham County Register of Deeds. John will update the form and the board will pursue their notarized signing.

      2. Board members will make efforts to have one or more notaries in attendance at the annual meeting on September 10th to facilitate the signing of new renewal documents

  4. BHNA website transition to https://www.eastlansingneighborhoods.com/

    1. Matt has contacted the city liaison and is exploring options for transitioning the content of https://brookfieldneighborhood.net/. Matt will email board members with his findings.

  5. 2023 Annual Meeting

    1. Will be held from 4-6pm on September 10th, with the rain date being September 17th

      1. Will be held on Oakland Dr this year. Jeff has contacted the city and reserved the dates for the street to be blocked off.

    2. The board will hold an additional meeting on Wednesday 8/30, at a time and place to be determined, in order to finalize details of the annual meeting

    3. Alice will purchase name tags, hotdogs, buns, condiments, and bottled water using funds from the association’s account

      1. Denise Moore proposed adding ice cream. Board members agreed to discuss all items that will be purchased during the meeting on 8/30.

    4. Board members discussed including yard games and entertainment activities for children

    5. The meeting is tentatively planned to be on the street in front of the houses of 237-252 Oakland. Denise will approach the homeowners for approval.

    6. Board terms for Jeff Johnson, John Hays, and Steve Whelan are ending this year

      1. John stated he will run again. Jeff stated he will not. Steve Whelan stated he is unlikely to rerun. One or more new board members will be needed.

    7. Covenants, trees, and luminaries will be on the meeting agenda

    8. Candidates for city council and East Lansing School Board were discussed as potential invitees. Would only be invited to be informal attendees, not official speakers. Final decisions will be made during the meeting on 8/30.

    9. The microphone and speaker that was used at last year’s meeting was provided by former board member Philip Eisenlohr. It’s believed that former board member Nella Davis-Ray is currently in possession of it. Nella will be contacted. Gayle currently has the yard signs that announce the meeting.

 

New Business: None

Open Discussion:

  • City of East Lansing updates from Steve Whelan: Crime is down overall, but auto theft rising for cars that have insertable door keys. Another reminder to keep car doors locked when parked at homes. Cut through traffic from Hagadorn and Grand River is down. Speeding in excess of 25 miles-per-hour has not typically been an observed issue.

 

Action Items: 

 

Name

Action

Deadline

All

Identify potential new board members

2023-08-30

John

Update covenant renewal form

2023-08-30

All

Invite one or more notaries to attend the annual meeting on 9/10

2023-08-30

Alice

Contact Nella Davis-Ray regarding the microphone and speaker to use during the annual meeting

2023-08-30

Matt

Identify specific pros and cons for transitioning the https://brookfieldneighborhood.net/ website to https://www.eastlansingneighborhoods.com/ and email the details to the board

2023-12-01

Adjournment:

  • A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting at 8:17pm ET. The motion carried without objection.

 

Next Meeting Date, Time, and Location: Wednesday, August 30th, 2023. Time and location to be determined.

Minutes submitted by: Steve Beckman

Minutes approved by: Board motion during meeting held on 2023-10-22.


Content Classification: 

2023-10-22

 

Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association 

Board Meeting Minutes

 Date: October 22nd, 2023

 

Board Members:  Steve Beckman (incumbent Secretary), Nella Davis-Ray, John Hays, Matthew Kazmierski (incumbent Vice President, acting President), Gail Lytle Lira (incumbent Communications), Denise Moore, Pat Poli, Alice Schehr (incumbent Treasurer), Mark Warner

 

Call to order: Steve Beckman called to order this meeting of the Brookfield Heritage Neighborhood Association Executive Committee at 4:12pm ET on October 22nd, 2023 at 252 Oakland Dr.

 

Roll Call:

  • Steve Beckman (incumbent Secretary), Nella Davis-Ray, John Hays, Gail Lytle Lira (incumbent Communications), Denise Moore, Pat Poli, Alice Schehr (incumbent Treasurer), Mark Warner

  • Absent: Matthew Kazmierski (incumbent Vice President, acting President)

  • Quorum present: Yes

 

Approval of Past Minutes: A motion was made and seconded to approve the minutes from the Board meeting held on August 17th, 2023 as presented. The motion was carried without objection.

 

Treasurer Updates: 

  1. Alice stated the association’s current account balance is $3,968 after $190 of expenses from the annual meeting and $790 in new revenue from association dues

  2. Alice spoke with Pat Robinson about replacing trees damaged during recent weather events. Pat stated that the price for replacement trees has nearly doubled.

  3. Alice has applied to become a notary in order to help facilitate the signing of the renewal of the covenants

    1. A motion was made and seconded to approve the spending of $176.33 on Alice’s notary registration fees. The motion carried without objection.

 

Old Business:

  1. 2024 Neighborhood Garden Tour

    1. Will consider inviting the Meridian Township Garden Club and friends of participating neighborhood residents

  2. Neighborhood covenants modification and renewal

    1. Steve Beckman reported that 27 addresses still need to sign consent forms to modify the covenants and at least 25 need to sign the renewal form

      1. John provided two new signed modification forms

    2. After Alice becomes a notary she will go door-to-door with John to visit neighbors that still need to sign forms so that she can notarize their signatures and ask for annual dues if they have not yet been paid

  3. BHNA website transition to https://www.eastlansingneighborhoods.com/

    1. Matt is still exploring options for transitioning the content of https://brookfieldneighborhood.net/. Matt will eventually email board members with his findings.

 

New Business

  1. The following quarterly meeting dates were agreed upon:

    1. Sunday, January 21st, 2024, at 4:00pm, at 217 Oakland Dr

    2. Sunday, April 21st, 2024, at 4:00pm, location to be determined

    3. Sunday, July 21st, 2024, at 4:00pm, location to be determined

    4. September meeting to plan for annual meeting, date and location to be determined

      1. Annual meeting scheduled for Sunday, September 8th, 2024, at 4:00pm on Maplewood Dr. Rain date will be Sunday, September 15th, 2024.

  2. Appointment of board officers

    1. The following appointments were nominated and approved unanimously:

      1. President – Matthew Kazmierski

      2. Vice President – Mark Warner

      3. Secretary – Steve Beckman

      4. Treasurer – Alice Schehr

      5. Communications – Pat Poli and Nella Davis-Ray

    2. Members at large – John Hays, Gail Lytle Lira, Denise Moore

  3. September neighborhood meeting of East Lansing neighborhood associations

    1. Matt attended the meeting and emailed his notes to the board. Nothing specifically related to our neighborhood was discussed during that meeting.

  4. 2024 Luminaries

    1. This year’s event will be held on December 21st with the 22nd being the backup date

    2. Alice will order bags and candles, contact the city to have sand delivered at least two weeks before the event, and recruit street captains

Open Discussion:

  • Steve asked to have a copy of Pat Robinson’s most recent neighborhood tree report sent to all board members

 

Action Items: 

Name

Action

Deadline

Matt

Identify specific pros and cons for transitioning the https://brookfieldneighborhood.net/ website to https://www.eastlansingneighborhoods.com/ and email the details to the board

2023-12-01

Alice and Denise

Prepare for the luminaries event

2023-12-07

 

Adjournment:

  • A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting at 5:03pm ET. The motion carried without objection.

 

Next Meeting Date, Time, and Location: Sunday, January 21st, 2024 at 4:00pm ET at 217 Oakland Dr.

 

Minutes submitted by: Steve Beckman

Minutes approved by: TBD