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Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Call To Order:

Chair Barry Massoudi called the meeting to order at 6:40 pm at the Mercer Island Library, 4400 88th Ave SE, Mercer Island, Washington.


Roll Call:

Members Beth Brennan, Margaret Minnick, Sandra Schilling, Katalin Pearman, Judith Powers Leithe, City Councilmember Steve Litzow and Chair Barry Massoudi were present. Members Erin Curtiss, James Dugan and Susan Landon were absent.

Recreation Supervisor Jennifer Berner and Administrative Assistant Eileen Trifts were present.



There were no appearances



It was moved by Member Margaret Minnick to;


Approve Regular Meeting Minutes of June 9, 2004 as written.


It was seconded and the motion passed.


Treasurerís Report:

In the absence of a treasurer, Jennifer Berner distributed copies of the most recent Arts Council Financial Report.  The report covered revenues and expenditures through June of this year.


Chairís Report:

Chair Barry Massoudi introduced and welcomed the newest Arts Council Member, Sandra Schilling.


Barry reminded everyone that each Arts Council Member will be asked to meet with an outside facilitator, Michael Pendleton, for one hour sometime in August.  This would be in advance to a retreat to be scheduled sometime in September.  Beth mentioned that she will be unavailable for most of September, so it was agreed that the retreat could be held in early October.


Judy Leithe asked if a construction update for downtown could be included as an item at the retreat.  It was suggested that Rich Hart could be invited to speak about this.


Barry introduced Charlie Rathburn of 4Culture, formerly King County Cultural Association, and turned the floor over to him for a discussion on cultural planning. 


4Culture, formerly King County Cultural Association, is made up of four basic programs plus an admin staff.  These four programs include Public Art, Historic Preservation, the Arts, and a Heritage Program.  They have an 8-10 million dollar a year budget plus 1% for the arts. 


Charlie explained that a cultural plan is different for each community. He explained that a cultural plan will give some structure and a plan for carrying out your visions for art on Mercer Island.  He will copy and send the following items to the Chair.

  • Issaquah Cultural Plan
  • Bellevue Cultural Plan
  • Samples of organizing charters Ė every city is different.


Charlie suggested looking at the assets in our community.  An example for Mercer Island would be Youth Theatre Northwest.  This is a very unique organization.  His advice was to have a long term plan that will give framework to go by.  The process (of getting people involved) is what appears to be of most importance.


In closing, Charlie said he would expect to be invited back to meet with the Ats Council again, and that he is open to helping in any way he can to develop a cultural plan for Mercer Island.


Performance Arts:                               

Beth Brennan began by information everyone that Sandra Schilling has been on the Mostly Music in the Park Committee for as long as Beth has been here.  The first MMIP concert is scheduled tomorrow, July 15.  Beth reported that there has been good coverage in the reporter this year though there were a few omissions.


Beth invited anyone that would like to volunteer to work in the MMIP booth could see her after the meeting.



Judy Leithe reported that she and Katalin met and are planning to work together on expanding some of the performing arts and literary programs.


Public Art:                   

Margaret Minnick reported that the proposed stairwell art project for the new community center was passed by the City Council at their recent meeting.  A contract with the artist for all 14 panels is imminent once the community center construction contract goes out for bid and is awarded. 



No report.



No report.


Community Arts:         

No report



No report


Staff Report:   

Jennifer Berner asked members to turn their hours in to her.  Email or fill out a form, whichever is easiest.


Jen reported that Summer Celebration was a big success again this year.  Beth Brennan commented that she thought the arts and crafts were much better this year.  Jen will pass this info onto Nancy Woo, the Events Coordinator.  The battle of the bands which was a part of summer celebration was new this year and was a huge success.  It is anticipated that it is something we will do again next year.


Jen reported that the Veteranís Project hit a snag, but is back on track again.  It seems there were no records to be found regarding the original support for the slab where the pergola is scheduled to be built.  The artist and the geo-tech are now working together to make a determination on this.  It looks good at this time.  The engineerís green light is all that is needed.  It will take the artist approximately six weeks to complete the structure after that.  It is very likely that it can be finished in time for Veteranís Day of 2004.


City Council Report:                

Councilman Litzow advised that I-90 will be the hot topic at the upcoming Town Hall Meeting.  They will be addressing the possibility the loss of use of the HOV lanes by Mercer Island single occupant vehicles.  The final city council vote is scheduled for August 6.


The Council is in the middle of the budget.  The current debate is whether to raise taxes or cut services.  There is a deficit of $3 to 500,000 that needs to be made up.  The total budget is about $33 million.  Salaries and benefits for 175 city employees is the biggest expense.  The cost of benefit is about another 10% this year and wages another 3%.  The good news is that the Tim Eyman initiative did not make it to the ballot!


Adjournment:  8:15 pm


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