Category Archives: Meeting Minutes

Meeting Minutes: September 3rd, 2013

Baynton Hill Neighbors

September 3rd, 2013

Call to order at 7:10p

Approximately 45 neighbors from Coulter, Wakefield, Bringhurst, Queen Lane and Baynton St. were present.

Ross Hennesy gave an introduction to those in attendance, giving a brief history of Baynton Hill Neighbors (BHN).

  • BHN contact is mostly via email lists but will try to contact via phone numbers if individuals don’t have email access.
  • Ross explained how in the void left by Germantown Settlement and Wister NAC, BHN is attempting to serve as a collective voice for the neighborhood. A representative from Wister Neighborhood Council corrected Ross explaining how although the NAC was lost, WNC still exists and wants to coordinate
  • District Office Chief of Staff from State Rep. Kinsey introduced himself, and says his office is interested in working with our group. Contact: Stacey A. Wright, (215) 849-6592,

Yard Party/ Potluck

  • Voting members agreed to move the date from September 15th to Sept 14th @ 5pm. It is a potluck and everyone in the neighborhood is invited. If it rains, the event will be held indoors.

PGW Gas works

  • Chris Paulmier announced potholes at Baynton/Church & Baynton/Penn from recent gas works projects.
  • Tripping hazards developing.


  • Ross was contacted by SEPTA for input on fence.
  • Community is concerned about the safety and appearance. Septa feedback was that repairing was not feasible and so the fence will be replaced.
  • BHN requests that the fence is repaired and painted. If it must be replaced, it should be replaced with wrought iron. BHN is not interested in replacing it with chain link and would rather it stay.
  • BHN requests that the artwork stay.
  • BHN requests that SEPTA be mindful of the foliage that grows behind the fence, and request that it

is landscaped and cared for, instead of overgrown with periodic herbicide spraying. There was some interest in helping care for this.

Police Roll Call

  • Another shooting occurred in August at Baynton & Coulter intersection
  • Kathy Paulmier’s police contacts encourage us to contact Capt. Fleming at 215-686-3140 (3141), ask for “a supervisor” to make a “complaint roll call” in order to receive additional police attention.
  • Patrols will be alerted in the morning as to all “roll call complaints”
  • Stacey (from Rep Kinsey) recommends roll call, call 911, and give him notice so his office call follow up additionally.
  • Roll call is not for crimes only, but can be used to preempt crimes if there is a pressing concern.

234 E Penn Plans

  • Ross invited the developers of that property to come talk and give facts and receive our feedback.
  • Ross asked that all in attendance be respectful and keep our questions for after the full presentation.
  • Presentation summary, details are supplemented by a packet handout:
    • Matthew Green (developer/real estate) & Devon Reaves (recovery specialist/social work)
    • Mathew and Devin hope to start Brotherly Love House. To date, their outreach consisted of informing local politicians
  • Matthew and Devin each explained their skills and qualifications in the area of drug rehabilitation, professional associations they are part of, and real estate experience.
  • Details were given about what is “addiction”, it was described as a disease.
  • Process: detox (medical), in-patient treatment, then a) move into private home, or b) recovery housing and lastly, long-term recovery.
  • Devon’s experience with recovery residences are that they are more effective than other systems.
  • Treatment center vs Recovery residences: the latter is more about self/community help programs, not treatments
  • Brotherly Love House: Level III facility, affiliated with various groups.
  • Up to 75,000 people in treatment for addiction in the city in a given year, city reports less than 2000 beds available for those people.
  • Goal is to be premier provider of recovery residences in Philadelphia
  • American Planning Associations claim the recovery houses have no impact on surrounding home values
  • Questions and concerns:

Concern: One individual who buys and sells real estate explained how he could not use the facility as a “comparable” since it would be a group home.

Q: Why place the home in a house within a residential neighborhood as opposed to rehabbing a non-residential building, ie an abandoned factory?

A: That would be ideal, but they don’t have enough money.

Concern: Penn St is a path for children from Belfield towards Wister School.

Q: How were they able to start without getting a zoning variance?

A: This is the beginning of the zoning processes, (mostly) only started construction on exterior work and BHN will be notified when the hearing will be.

Concern: Community feels “dumped on” – methadone clinic, sex offenders in the neighborhood, not a lot of warning, consider the children and property values. Community would like a family rather than a “program” to live in 234 E. Penn.

Q: How many people are proposed to live there?

A: 17-20

Q: How long is the program? How will they cycle through?

A: It is currently a 12 bedroom house. Each addict makes a 6-12 month commitment, but the length is up to the individual.

Concern: Some recovering addicts are good, and some aren’t.

Response: Brotherly Love does not do work release or receive outside funding, no RHD. The individuals pay for their own treatment.

Q: Is it good for recovering addicts to have a home so close to “open air” drug markets?

A: In the city, drugs are everywhere

Q: Are there other potential uses for the house?

A: Maybe

Q: Did you do research as to proximity to schools and other group homes?

A: Unclear / No answer

Conclusion: BHN understands the need in the city for drug recovery facilities, but this is not the right place for it (group strongly agrees)

  • Helen Nicholson reminded neighbors that this block once had a well run facility that deteriorated and became a serious problem to the neighborhood.
  • Neighbors were reminded to watch for zoning info and come to the zoning meeting.
  • It was suggested by one attender that other facilities might be more agreeable, such as elderly housing.
  • Chris Nicholson thanked Ross Hennesy for organizing and facilitating.

Adjourned at 8:50p

Meeting Minutes: July 30th, 2013

Baynton Hill Neighbors Association

July 30, 2013

In Attendance: Amanda Staples, Matt McFarland, Chris & Helen Nicholson, Ross Henessey, Tom, Alexa, Rick, Dorsey


5345 Baynton St
  • We believe Michael Holland has a successful bid on the Baynton St lot.
  • Glenn Bergman is still interested in the lot, but we have not heard directly from him.
Wister Station
  • Septa/City came by and cleaned up the Rufe St approach to the Wister Station
  • Ross wants a sign to indicate the station entrance
House for Sale
  • Our friends at 410 E Bringhurst are selling their house. Polling for interest.
  • Matt is putting together a website to host our meeting notes.
  • Are email addresses available for officers? – Yes
  • We should put up a form for people to sign up.
RCO with City
  • Bylaws, schedule, boundaries are required.
  • We need to pick a recurring date for meetings so the city can post on their calendar.
    • First Tuesday of the month, skip Aug 6th
Issues with draft/current bylaws
  • Consensus votes – should apply to all decisions,
  • Voting Memberships: A membership list should be kept which defines the voting members, which require meeting attendence (50% of meetings in last 6 months)
  • Non-voting, generally interested in the group and meet eligibility requirements
  • Quorum Requirement for Vote
  • Lower the age requirments to 16
  • Presidental term limits? Debated no confidence votes vs regular elections.
  • Election of Officers: Majority Vote
  • Change of Bylaws: Consensus – 1
  • Dispensing of Funds: Consensus – 1
  • All things but elections: Consensus – 1
  • Quorum Amount: 51% of Voting Members must be present for a vote
  • Membership/Attendance lists must be kept at each meeting
  • Term Limits: tabled until next meeting
Group Expansion
  • Empower the group to invite neighbors to our meetings
Neighborhood Potluck
  • Sept. 15th, 2013 – before dark (5pm)
  • Front yard BBQ/Picnic
Wakefield Block captain was contacted: Florence Palmer
Discussed helping as a group with the derelict house next to Tom (143 E Coulter St)

Next meeting: 9/3/2013

Action Items
  • (Amanda, Matt) Gun Violence form letter
  • (Matt) Email address/system
  • People will contact lawyerly people for help
  • Can we use relaim philly for “hotspot” map?

Meeting Minutes: June 13th, 2013

Baynton Hill Neighbors Association

June 13, 2013

In Attendance: Amanda Staples, Matt McFarland, Chris & Helen Nicholson, Ross Henessey, Tom ???, Darcy

What do you like and dislike about your neighborhood?

Things people like : Quiet, Trees, Friendliness of neighbors, Old architecture, Contrast of City/Country look and feel

Things people don’t like : Violence, blight, stupid street trees, trash/litter, lack of resturants

Agenda Items

  • We would like to finally approve the bylaws. The city has possibly changed the applicaiton process to be a little easier.
    • Reviewed the proposed bylaws
    • By next meeting (July) we will formalize a document, feedback is requested by the end of June
  • 5345 baynton St (Empty Lot).
    • Michael Holland is moving into Penn St awaiting his negotiations with the city on this lot.
    • Glen B. has expressed interest in the lot as well and was upset to discover there were plans in the works for it.
    • We encourage attendence at BHNA meetings to discuss these issues.
    • The group has no formal response or endorsement, however we can act as a forum to hear plans and provide individual feedback.
  • Block Captain
    • Ross has not gotten his signature yet for his candidacy, so no movement yet
    • Coulter St captain could not be located, no official captain is registered
  • Gun Violence
    • Shooting on Wakefield/Coulter.
    • Apparently shooting started blocks away and continued to Wakefield. Police reported no injuries.
    • Wondering what we can do, options aren’t apparent. We’d like to send letters to those in the city whose jobs regard public safety.
  • Contacts in local apartment
    • The current group members would like to establish more contacts with the residents of the apartments on the block
    • Should we have a block party/neighborhood party?
  • Road Construction (New Pipes)
    • New gas line on Church Ln on Baynton Ave.
    • We don’t know how much construction, or how long it will last, or what the street closures will be like.
  • 234 E Penn St Auction
    • Up for auction on June 2?. The Jukowski’s are interested in attending to see what happens and possibly make a bid
  • Email policy
    • Privacy policy for emails, no change. Emails will remain public.
  • The art work on Rufe St is covered with weeds, we’d like to free them up again
  • Announcment for the “Imperfect Gallery”’s fundraising effort.
  • Maplewood mall has several events the next two weekends regarding Juneteenth and also the revitalization of the mall.
  • Proposed new meeting date: Monday July 15th, 7pm

Action Items:

  • (Matt) Make a map of our boundaries for the bylaws document
  • (All) Review bylaws document and provide feedback via email by July 1st
  • (Ross) Check Wakefield, Penn, Lena St block captains
  • (Matt) Draft letters for local politician regarding our conern for gun violence
  • (Matt) Chop up some weeds around the art work on Rufe St

Meeting Minutes: March 28th, 2013

Baynton Hill Neighbors Association

March 28th, 2013

Attendance: Chris & Helen, Matt & Amanda, Ross, Chris & Emile, P., Rick & Alexa, Tom, Dorcey, Alice(?)


  • Ross was “nominated” for Block Captain, he will look into 200 block of E. Coulter to see if there is one.
  • AVI discussion of how the new tax structure is affecting the local undeveloped land. GKG farm and Paulmier’s woodlot are increasing beyond generally considered market values. We will discuss possible actions we could take as a group.
  • Michael Holland’s proposal was discussed. There is lingering concern over development of open space. No decisions have been arrived at.
  • Alexa revised the bylaws. The boundaries of the group are still in question. How should we approach reaching out to residents of the proposed boundaries? A smaller area would be easier to manage and have less interaction with the commercial issues of Germantown and Chelten Ave. However, there are some members who are very interested in being involved in the commercial aspect. Trying to avoid an overlap with Wakefield 49ers, we are leaning towards Bringhurst to Church, Rail Road tracks to Lena
  • Anti dumping regulations are being discussed out of Cindy Bass’ office. We want to support the measure.
  • Chris N is officially “against dumping”
  • Robberies at 5313 Baynton. 2 cars were broken into in the house parking lot. Several bikes and other items were taken from the porch, house window was broken. We’re hoping for more communication on the block. Adding additional motion detecting lights, getting to know people.
  • City wide clean-up, April 13th. Tires on Rufe st are gone, no one knows who’s taken. We’d like to focus on Rufe St by the tracks. Alexa will take the lead to organize with city officials. Dorcey will make fliers, and we’ll distribute. Amanda will do wakefield. Helen will get Queen Lane, Alice(?) will do her apartment, Alexa will do the train area. Chris P. will do Penn St.
  • It was brought up as a reminder that John’s Market is a good resource to have and to keep in mind when considering your shopping needs.

Meeting Minutes: February 28th, 2013

Baynton Hill Neighbors Association

February 28th, 2013

In attendance: Tom, Dorsey, Chris, Rick, Alexa, Matt, Michael, Ross


  • Michael seeks support for 5345 Baynton St, details plans for a small house to be built on the property. Strong concern about losing a natural area, also about other potential and less desirable uses that may come for the lot now that there is a process in place. Thanks to Michael for coming to speak with us

Link to Michael’s letter

  • APRIS truck has pre-emptively moved away, although there is some concern that the owner suspects neighbors may have damaged the truck.
  • RCO – Boundaries discussion, do not want to overlap with Wakefield 49ers. Chelten Ave, Germantown, Queen Lane to train tracks. Alexa will update the bylaws for the next meeting.
  • Clean-up, March 23rd. Ross will find out who can deal with the tire situation.
  • Matt showed the L&I Violation map
  • Ross suggests a map with a boundary which we can annotate.
  • Dorsey brought up some howling dogs in the area, to see if anyone knows where they’re coming from. We suspect maybe from Church Ln direction.
  • Flyers for the block cleanup? Dorsey was volunteered to come with one.

Next meeting: March 28th at 5318 Baynton St. 7:00pm.