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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Call to Order

The meeting called to order by Chair, Jane Ditzler, at 6:30 pm at the Community Center at Mercer View, 8236 SE 24th Street, Mercer Island, WA 98040



Roll Call

Members present:  Jane Ditzler, Helen Martin, Ellen Hochberg, Judith Powers Leithe, Katalin Pearman, Kevin Curry, Beth Brennen, Sara Liberty-Laylin, Fred Poyner and Pam Rock.


City Council:

Councilman Bruce Bassett (6:30-7:30 pm)



Amber Britton, Manny Ocampo, Ali Speitz, Spietz, Diane Mortenson, and Eileen Hemmis Trifts  AMENDED



Chair Report

Chair, Jane Dizler reported that Pam Rock is willing to take over the Literary Committee when Judy Leithe’s term ends and she leave’s the Arts Council in May. AMENDED: Judy will be leaving the Arts Council in May, but will continue to serve on the Literary Committee. Jane confirmed Pam’s appointment in January. Judy will stay on as a member of the committee to help train Pam. Sara Liberty-Laylin has offered to chair an ad hoc committee to develop a volunteer system.  Jane confirmed Sara’s appointment.


The date has changed for the Banner Project to go before the City Council.  It is now scheduled for mid- February.  Councilman Bassett and Arts Council Member Poyner AMENDED: (contingent on Fred’s schedule) will be unable to attend.  Amber will package the proposal and prepare an Agenda Bill for the City Council. Staff will make the presentation. Kevin Curry, Public Art Chair will also attend the Council meeting.


February 2nd is Arts Day in Olympia.  Jane reported that she will attend.


The Chair announced a change in order for the Agenda.  Manny Ocampo’s announcement of the new Parks & Recreation Director has been moved forward as he will have to leave early to attend the Design Services Group (DSG) meeting.


Announcement of new Parks & Recreation Director

The new Parks & Recreation Director is Bruce Fletcher.  He will start on February 1st.  It was noted that he managed the Arts Commission in Tukwila during his tenure there. 



City Council Report

Councilman Bassett stated that every two years, the mayor is elected or re-elected. In conjunction with the election, committees may be reassigned.  He does not know yet whether or not he will be returning as the Arts Council Liaison, but stated that he is open to it.


In response to a question from the floor, Councilman Bassett indicated that there will be some money for the 1% for the Arts Fund from field renovations that are occurring on the Island. There are a number of groups associated with the project(s), so it is not yet clear what that will look like.


Councilman Bassett and Public Art Chair, Kevin Curry, would like to put the “ducks” in a field and take some pictures to use as a visual. If the Arts Council decides to go forward with this, they will let staff know so they can coordinate with property owners as needed.




Staff Reports:

Ali Spietz, City Clerk, made a presentation to the Arts Council on parliamentary procedure and the Open Public Meeting Act.   The goal is to help the Arts Council have efficient meetings and get things done.


1.      Open Public Meetings Act (OPMA) – This act applies to the legislative body (City Council) and any sub council.  Boards and commissions may not be covered by this, but because of the 1% for the arts and the fact that the Arts Council spends that money; the City Attorney has deemed that the Arts Council should follow the OPMA.


In a public meeting anything that is discussed is open to the public.  Since a governing body can transact business when a quorum is present, it is conducting a meeting subject to the requirements of the OPMA whenever a majority of its members meet together and deal in any way with city business. Because members may discuss business by telephone or email, it is not necessary to be in the physical presence of each other for there to be a meeting subject to the act. If one member emails the other members merely for the purpose of providing information and a discussion does not result amongst a quorum, there is no OPMA issue.


2.     Roberts Rules of Order – The Arts Council “loosely” follows Roberts Rules of Order.  When making a motion, it should be clearly stated and seconded and voted upon.  If the minute taker is not clear on the vote, she may ask for a roll call. 

3.     The following topics were also covered by the City Clerk:

o    Ad Hoc Committees are for a specific purpose. The chair can make appointments, but there needs to be a majority vote as to whether there should be an ad hoc committee.

o    The Community Relations Committee should make recommendations for grants. They must be approved by the Council.

o    Ex officio members are for nonprofit organizations.  That is not the Arts Council structure.  Being a committee member is the best way for an Arts Council member who is not longer on the council to continue to be involved.

o    If a Council member has a concern, it should be brought to the chair.  If the issue is with the Chair, it can be brought to the staff. If uncomfortable going to the staff, see the City Clerk.

o    Executive Committees are not used for councils or boards. The Arts Council does not have an Executive Committee.

o    The Chair can amend the agenda at the beginning of the Agenda or the end. It must be put in the minutes.  If it is a decision you might not want to add it at the end.  Informational items are probably okay at the end.

o    Committee reports should be written up in a few sentences, and sent it in an email to the chair and staff liaison approximately one week prior to the general meeting.  It can become a part of the packet for that meeting.  This is especially important if a committee chair has a report, but will not be able to attend the meeting.  The staff liaison can make the report for the committee chair.



A two thirds majority of the Arts Council (11 members even though one position is vacant) must approve the bylaws for them to pass


Staff, Amber Britton and Ali Spietz, presented proposed new bylaws for the Arts Council for adoption.  Changes and clarifications were as follows:


·         Each Arts Council position is for four years and the term expires on the last day in May of the four year term.


·         The two positions that must be voted on are the Chair and Vice Chair. There is no Treasurer or Secretary. Every member of the Arts Council is a member at large.


·         Each officer will serve a one-year term beginning with the January meeting following December elections. Officers can serve two terms. If voted into office on a year that their membership is due to be renewed and they choose to leave the Arts Council, a new vote would occur to find a replacement.


·         Arts Council members will indicate interest in Committee Chair positions. The Chair and Vice Chair will, with staff, determine who will be appointed.  Appointments will be announced by the Chair at the January meeting. If members end their term in May and leave the Council, the Chair will appoint a replacement. Departing members who are Chairs should spend their last few months on the Arts Council training their replacement.  The chair could oversee this process. Ali Speitz and Amber Britton will work to come up with language regarding how to best handle members appointed in January and who are leaving the Council in May.  This does not need to be part of the Bylaws, but part of their appointment process as it is more of a procedural item.


·         Resignations and Terminations:  Arts Council members may forfeit their commission by missing three consecutive meetings. Members should advise the chair and staff if meetings will be missed.  Resignations should go to the Mayor in writing with copies to the Chair and staff.


·         Generally, the Chair, Vice-Chair and Staff Liaisons shall meet at least one week in advance of Arts Council meetings to determine the meeting agenda.


It was moved by Council Member Ellen Hochberg to approve the bylaws as amended.  The motion was seconded and passed by a two thirds majority.  There were nine yeas and one abstention.


Mission Statement:

The Arts Council came up with four options for their new Mission Statement at the December retreat.  A ballot vote was taken to eliminate two of the four options, and again to choose between the remaining two options.  The following Mission Statement was adopted by the Arts Council by a majority vote:


The mission of the Mercer Island Arts Council is to nurture, promote, and implement high quality arts and cultural activities for the enrichment of the community of Mercer Island.



New Arts Council Manuals

Amber Britton distributed and reviewed the new manual with Arts Council members.



Annual Report and 2010 Work Plan

Staff will prepare an agenda bill to submit the Work Plan to the City Council for approval at their February 1 meeting. 

Information on YTN Benefits and Reading Program in Schools are needed to include in the Work Plan. 


Arts Council discussion included: 


·         One of the benefits in the agreement is to make tickets available for those who have not had them before through Youth and Family Services.  YTN has made them available. 


·         Ellen Hochberg proposed that the Work Plan look at where best the Reading Program requirement can fit, realizing that there might be some restrictions in the public school system.  Ellen is serving as the liaison for the Arts Council with the schools.


·         It was noted that the requirement to open the YTN to the people of Mercer Island for a performance of the Salmon people is dependent on whether or not the Arts Council is able to secure matching funds for the $4,000 in the budget.  The Arts Council will definitely look at doing this in 2010.


·         It was noted for the record that YTN has complied with the agreement requirements and been very good about meeting their obligations.



Agenda Bill swap and Banner Project Staff Coordination Update:

There is still a lot of work to be done before the banner project can be taken to Council. 

It was originally scheduled to go before Council on February 1st, but the Annual Report and Work Plan will now by submitted on February 1st and the Banner Project on February 15th. This “swap” in presentation dates will provide additional time to complete the paperwork and an agenda bill for the Banner Project.


Brackets, installation, printing of banners and the artists will be included in the Banner proposal.


City Maintenance and DSG have offered their assistance.  City Maintenance will install the banners.  This will be very helpful since they know all the requirements and would do all safety inspections.  Installation could be as early as July of this year.


Once the Banner Project is approved by City Council, a call for Artists will go out.  The Public Art Selection Committee would then make a determination. 


Fred Poyner reminded everyone that a three page proposal was presented to the Arts Council.  There would be five banner designs with a total of 88 banners to go up.  Fred will send the proposal out again.


Katalin Pearman asked what the process would be if another subject surfaced.  Fred responded that getting the brackets up and getting the initial project going is the main concern right now.  Once the brackets are up, banners shouldn’t be too difficult to switch out.




Beth Brennen announced that the first committee meeting should be held around the end of January. There are quite a few bands that have applied, and they are hoping for more.




Katalin Pearman reported that the total sales for MIVAL were $2285 with $571 (25%) in revenue for the Arts Council.

The Committee will be working on 2011 and 2012 schedules.  It is necessary to plan that far in advance as many of the large groups need to know far in advance.




Advise Sara Liberty-Laylin of any volunteer needs your committees need. 




The meeting adjourned at 8:55 pm.


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