Board Meeting: November 09, 2016 Approved December 13, 2016 Minutes McKnight Neighborhood Council Meeting called to order by President Walter K at 6:10 pm. Board Members Present (8): Lamont E Clemons; Tawreak Eddington, Asst Treas; Walter Kroll, President; Elizabeth O’Gilvie; Nick Panteleakis; Damian Phillips, Asst Secy/Clerk; Synthia Scott-Mitchell, Secy/Clerk; Elizabeth Stevens, Treasurer Board Members Not Present (7): Lloyd A Creswell; Lorenzo Gaines; Art Jones; Bryan McFarland, Vice-President; Ben Swan, Jr; Paul Swenson, Giselle Vizcarrondo Administrative Staff: Elizabeth Lederman Neighborhood Members & Guests: Todd Ostrowski, David Gaby, Roberta Kilkenny, Charles Rucks, Brandi Gamble, Stephen Gray, Greg Ellerbee Guest Presentations: Chief John Barbieri, SPD; Denise Jordan, Mayoral Chief of Staff; Atty Hector Zavala Chair, and members of the Community Police Hearing Board; James Channing, Pride Gas Station Pres Walter K welcomed those attending the meeting; Board and audience introductions followed. GUEST PRESENTATION S
Community Police Hearing Board
The purpose of the presentation is to introduce members of the Board, explain the Board’s function, the processes followed, and take questions and suggestions from the community. Similar presentations have been made across the city to other neighborhood councils and civic organizations.
Their job is to review the investigations of complaints made against members of the Springfield Police Department. Complaints may be made in writing to the Police Commissioner, there is a form available online, and can also be obtained at the Police Department on Pearl Street. Reports can be anonymous, and will be investigated.
Complaints may be of any type—from rude behavior, to excessive force, theft, or other criminal action. Complaints are reviewed by the Chief and assigned to the appropriate investigative team. Criminal complaints are sent to the District Attorney, and investigated by the major crimes unit.
Civil complaints, which involve infractions of department rules and regulations and internal standards of behavior, are assigned to the Internal Investigation Unit of the SPD, who conduct the investigation. Their job is to gather evidence only, not to form opinions.
Once complete, the investigative reports are submitted to the Hearing Board, and they examine statements, interviews, videos, and any other evidence provided. The Board can request additional information if they feel it is necessary. Once their review is completed, they decide whether the matter should be handled by the Chief, or if it requires a formal hearing with charges.
Formal hearings include evidence and testimony presented, after which the Board votes to either sustain the charges or dismiss them. If the Board votes to sustain, it means the Board agrees there has been an infraction and the officer should be disciplined. This decision is forwarded to the Police Department who is responsible for imposing the appropriate discipline. Chief Barbieri emphasized that the department always follows their recommendations, and has the utmost respect for their work.
The Board has seven members who all serve as volunteers. The representatives are chosen as reflective of the make-up of the community. They are appointed by Mayor Sarno; and the Mayor’s Chief of Staff, Denise Jordan, serves as a liaison between the Board and the Mayor’s office.
The Board is currently seeking feedback from the community. They are willing to organize training and information sessions for citizens to help facilitate more effective communication with the police overall, and welcome opportunities to do so.
Pride Gas Station Proposal for State Street & Thompson, presented by James Channing, Corporate Council for Pride
The Pride Company is locally owned, and operates 35 gas and convenience stores and 3 truck stop plazas in MA and CT. They provide significant employment in the area, with long term career paths in the company.
They are looking for support for their proposal from the Council when they go before the City Council for permit approvals. Four permits are required. The lot is presently owned and being marketed by Develop Springfield.
A rendering of the proposed facility was shown. Parcel has three lots. They will develop the first two lots and leave the third lot a buffer with landscaping.
The store will have 20 parking spaces, 7 parking spaces in front and the others in the back, and will include a drive through window. It will have a small café/deli inside.
Anticipate 1000-1200 car trips per day, and will operate 24 hours a day. There is one entrance/exit on State Street and two on Thompson Street.
The store will employ the equivalent of 30 full time jobs.
Once built, the facility will have an anticipated life of 50 years.
Discussion and questions from audience included concerns about traffic patterns, the aesthetics of the building, and the noise levels for adjacent residents, health and air quality issues, and the hours of operation.
SECRETARY’S REPORT: (Synthia Scott-Mitchell)
MOTION: (EO moved) to accept as presented; (TE seconded); (WK call for discussion); Motion unanimous.
FINAL BUSINESS—Wrap up. MOTION: (EO moved) to adjourn; (DP seconded); (WK called the question); Motion unanimous. Submitted for approval by Elizabeth Lederman, Administrative Staff, 12/13/16