MNA General Meeting Minutes, January 18, 2020

MNA Secretary Article, Front Porch Flyer, Meeting Minutes, Mueller Neighborhood Association

Seton Administrative Building, 1345 Philomena Street

10:05 – Meeting Called to Order – John Wooding, President

              Attendance ≈ 58 members

Introduce members of the Steering Committee – John

Treasurer’s Report – John Reese Thomas, Treasurer

                             Frost Checking Account:

                                           Beginning Balance:         $6,489.99

                                           Total Revenues:              $225.00

                                           Total Expenses:               $1,048.91

                                           Ending Balance:               $5,666.08

POA Update

              The POA did not meet last month, so John W. moved on to the next item on the Agenda.

Mueller Commission Update, Michael Jones

              Michael provided an update from January meeting of the Mueller Commission.

                             New northeast middle school:

AISD gave an update on the new northeast middle school set to be built in the neighborhood. Architectural renderings and preliminary details of the building were presented by AISD at the commission’s meeting. You can see an overview at https://www.austinisd.org/construction-management/bond/project-status/new-northeast.

PUD Amendment:

The PUD amendment was approved by City Council on the first reading on December 5th, 2019. The letters of support from the MNA and surrounding neighborhood associations played a role in getting the amendments through first reading. City Council is poised to take up consideration and vote om the PUD amendments on second and third readings on Thursday, January 23rd. No one has expressed any opposition to the PUD amendment.

Questions from members (with responses):

                             Q: What is in the PUD amendment?

A: The PUD amendment increases the cap of dwelling units and commercial square footage in Mueller. Catellus worked with the City of Austin to do a Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA) and found that these increases can be accommodated though Mueller’s existing system of streets, drainage and other infrastructure.

Coyote Activity – City of Austin Animal Services

Sarah Whitson with the city discussed recent coyote activity in the neighborhood and what our community can do to minimize interactions with coyotes. Sarah stated that recent uptick in coyote sightings and interactions is because this time of year is typically when juvenile coyotes are the most active. Coyotes are mainly active from dusk to dawn and live near greenbelts and other areas with wildlife. However, if they find a food source, coyotes are likely to return to that location.

Sarah left her contact information and it is included below:

Sarah Whitson

City of Austin Animal Services

Animal Protection Officer- Wildlife

Office: (512) 978-0513

[email protected]

7201 Levander Loop, Bldg. A, Austin TX 78702 

austintexas.gov/department/coyotes-central-texas

Questions from members (with responses):

Q: On Facebook threads [on the Mueller Neighbors page] many folks comment that if you see a coyote, call 311. What does calling 311 do?

              A: It lets Sarah know about the coyote’s behavior and location.

              Q: Do you know the specific range or area where coyotes have been active?

A: Coyotes have a range of up to 40 miles, so there isn’t necessarily a specific area where they live or are more active.

Q: What does it mean to haze a coyote?

A: Hazing is a process that helps to reshape coyote behavior and encourages them to avoid contact with humans. If you see a coyote, make loud noises and maintain eye contact, while making yourself seem larger.

Q: What’s the largest animal a coyote has eaten?

A: The largest animal Sarah has seen a coyote eat was a dead deer that was hit by a car prior to the coyote’s arrival.

Q: Do the coyotes travel alone or in packs?

A: Coyotes in Austin aren’t usually pack travelers but are more likely found in pairs.

Q: Would a whistle work in scaring off a coyote?

              A: Yes, a whistle is a great tool to use for hazing (scaring off) coyotes.

Q: Do coyotes eat mice and rats?

A: Coyotes are opportunistic feeders, so yes, small vermin like mice and rats would be fair game.

Q: Do coyotes try to seek shelter from the cold weather?

A: Coyotes’ fur keeps them warm during winter so they don’t need to seek shelter specifically because of cold weather.

Local Business Spotlight | Amy’s Ice Creams

Bart Glaser introduces Clayton Gerring, manager of the Amy’s located on Manor Rd (2002 Manor Rd Suite A, Austin, TX 78723).

Clayton discussed Amy’s Ice Creams’ history, business model, and philosophy on management.

Founded in 1984 by Amy Simmons, Amy’s Ice Creams has since expanded from its first location on Guadalupe Street to 15 other locations in Austin and one location in both Houston and San Antonio.

As a business that was founded by its namesake when she was in her twenties, Amy’s Ice Creams places an emphasis on empowering its young employees to learn the nuances of running and managing a successful business. Each Amy’s location opens its books to its employees to teach them the ins and outs of the financial side of operations.

Questions from members:

Q: Why wasn’t Amy’s on the east side sooner?

Q: How old do you have to be to work at Amy’s?

Q: How do the employees know how to do so many tricks when scooping the ice cream?

Community Engagement – MLK Weekend | Sherri Taylor

Taylor reminded members of the opportunity to attend and participate in the MLK March and Festival which takes place on Monday, January 20th. The march will start at 9:00 a.m. at the MLK Statue on the University of Texas campus and conclude at the south steps of the Capitol for a rally. The festival begins at 11:15 a.m. and goes until 3:30 p.m. at Huston-Tillotson University.

Taylor also mentioned that the MNA may want to look into how folks can collect and donate toiletries to homeless Austinites residing at the temporary campsite the Governor has opened at Highway 183 and Montopolis Drive.

Gift Card Drawing to Neighborhood Restaurants and Businesses | Bart Jacob

11:05 – Meeting Adjourned

Respectfully submitted Feb. 25, 2020,

Alison Raffalovich, Secretary

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