Steering Committee Meeting Minutes – July 1, 2010

In Attendance:  Jane Banks, CHD (community engagement comm), Joanne Glier, Franklin County Regional Housing and Redevelopment Authority (family services comm.); Erica Johnson, PVPC (fiscal sponsor), Peg Keller, city of Northampton (tri-county CoC), Jay Levy, Elliot – CHS Homeless Services (indiv services comm.), Gerry McCafferty, city of Springfield (Springfield CoC), Andrea Miller, CHD (data committee), Pamela Schwartz, Network, Suzanne Smith, Data analyst, Lynne Wallace, Dietz&co. Architects (co-chair)

Budget review:

  • Erica walked us through necessary budget amendments:
    • Data analyst unspent funds (due to late hire):  unanimous agreement to spend on finishing out research assistant contracts through 9/30/10  and the purchase of software or hardware that will support Network’s data collection and analysis for the long-term.   The committee empowered the Data Committee to determine precise purchases in the remaining months (as HMIS merger discussions progress).
    • Allocation of Brien Center funds:  unanimous agreement to empower Individual Services Committee to determine precise allocation of funds ($14,300, due to late hire) with the understanding that the funds will be treated as “flexible funds” in support of obtaining apartments for chronically homeless, particularly where construction and other delays have posed barriers in appropriate housing.  Special attention will be paid to Berkshire County’s needs first since Brien Center funds were slated to serve this area.
  • Other budget items:
    • Consumer stipend:  The Committee unanimously approved a consumer stipend of $40, per Network meeting and also agreed to “back pay” LC member Charlie Knight for meetings attended this year.  Jay raised the question of our target # of consumers for the LC (right now, we have 2 with the recent addition of Carmelina Romano, representing “family consumers” as the head of a formerly homeless family).  We agreed that we would seek a minimum of 4 consumer members, but that outreach should be ongoing and if the number becomes larger, we would expand to a consumer advisory group.
    • Network DVD purchases:  The Committee authorized the Network purchase of DVDs that include the video released at our 4/26 event and excepts from the conference itself, an edited compilation (through Paul Robbins Associates) that is suitable for local cable tv broadcast (and other venues).  Pamela will confirm the # of cable tv stations in our region and place an order at $10/DVD for appropriate number.  These will be distributed at our 7/22 Leadership Council meeting.

Budget proposal for 10/1/10 – 9/30/11 – Committee reviewed draft and agreed to include the data analyst line-item with the notation of the funding stream as HMIS/HUD funds.  This inclusion accomplishes two things:  (1) demonstrates the Network’s commitment to data analysis as a crucial component of our work and (2) demonstrates to prospective funders other funding sources and the viability of our enterprise.  Lynne will redraft budget accordingly and distribute to Committee for final review prior to 7/22 LC meeting.

Fiscal Agency:  The Committee reviewed proposals from the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission and United Way of Pioneer Valley.  Lynne will follow-up with both with questions/thoughts and will report back to Committee.  We will be prepared for a proposal for fiscal agency by 7/22 Leadership Council.

Fundraising:  Reviewed “ask” list and assignments; will add GCC foundation; will check in with Evan Dobelle re: contacts; will confirm with all that Steering Comm should be clearinghouse for all pursuits so we are well coordinated

Leadership Council recruitment: The Steering Committee unanimously agreed to propose a revision to the by-laws to expand the maximum number of members to 60.  This is in order to account for the increase in the number of provider representatives and the commitment to ensure balance between providers and broader community representation.  Our most recent recruitment effort has focused on the larger community and we need to ensure that we allow maximum flexibility so that people who would serve the Network’s interests and are willing to do so, are able to join!

On  DMH rep to Leadership Council:   agreed to reach out to new area director and if not him, then Susan Sprung, w. mass. director of community services for DMH – goal to expand contacts with DMH and DMH connections to Network (acknowledging current vital role of Dave Modzelewski)

Pamela’s job title: Committee agreed, upon Pamela’s request, to change title of “Director of Regional Coordination” to “Director” to allow for ease and clarity in communications, particularly with media

7/22  Leadership Council agenda planning:

The Committee agreed to the following items:

  • Presentation by Andrew Baker, the new western Mass coordinator of the Campaign to Protect Affordable Housing (the campaign to defeat the repeal of Chapter 40B), on the campaign and ways the Network can get involved (presuming a discussion of what is appropriate and how best to accomplish our goals)
  • Discussion of the ICHH Network evaluation –will resend/bring summary of findings to LC and ask for input and discussion
  • Budget presentations – closing out of grant period; approval of budget for next year
  • Fundraising for next year – will review “ask” list as a group ; brainstorm for others.
  • Fiscal agency:  discussion of recommendation and decision around post-grant fiscal agent
  • By-laws revision:  propose increase in LC number to maximum of 60
  • Quarterly meetings:  Agreed on 4th week in Oct., Jan., April, July, alternate between Wed and Thursdays, alternate location – encourage carpooling

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