Minutes – October 18, 2016

Neighbors in South Roanoke Meeting, Tuesday, October 18th, 2016 7:00pm
South Roanoke United Methodist Church

The meeting was called to order at 7:01pm by President Barbara Duerk. There were 52 people in attendance. She welcomed the residents and speakers for the evening.
Stewart Putney, secretary for “Neighbors in South Roanoke,” told the group that the membership now has a Facebook page and asked people to please like this page, as well as signing up for the free neighborhood sharing app “Nextdoor.” Stewart is the spokesperson for the neighborhood to report issues with street and sidewalk repair to the city. Please notify her of these things by calling her home phone – 344-7771, email her at info@soroneighbors.com, or send her a message on the Neighbors in South Roanoke Facebook page.
Delegate Sam Rasoul addressed the membership. He asked that everyone learn about the constitutional amendments on the upcoming ballots on Election Day. Also, he said that there is a budget short-fall for the 2016-2017 fiscal year, but there is a “rainy day” fund to bridge the gap. For the upcoming 2017-2018 budget, there will be tough things to address: possible no pay increases for teachers and other state employees and possibly adding a surcharge for using plastic bags at check-out. Roanoke will have train passenger service back as of 2017.
Scott Leamon, certified Crime Prevention Specialist for the Roanoke City Police Department, spoke to the membership regarding the recent burglaries in our neighborhood. There were four events between the last part of September and the first two weeks of October. There is a man in custody that has ties to the burglaries in the county, and the city police department is working to tie him to the ones in our area. You can’t control other people’s actions, but you can “target harden” your property to decrease the possibility of a crime. He stressed several points to the residents.:
1) Always locks your doors.
2) Notify neighbors if you will be out of town; you can also let Scott know scott.leamon@roanokeva.gov and he will send police cars to patrol your house and yard during your absence.
3) Invest in a basic home security system and/or buy a dog.
4) Call 911 to report any suspicious activity every time to start a documentation trail.
Brian Tinsley is our neighborhood’s resource officer. Either he or Scott will attend our membership meetings to give crime reports for our neighborhood.
Chris Chittum, planning director for the city of Roanoke, notified the group that the city would be considering an update to the zoning in the city. This change would allow lots of at least 5,000 square feet to convert single family homes into rental duplexes. He said that homeownership is down, and this would encourage investors to develop vacant homes and undeveloped lots into rentals. There are 20 lots in South Roanoke that could be changed.
Bob Clement, Neighborhood Services Coordinator, invited everyone to attend the annual neighborhood potluck dinner at Jefferson Center on Friday, November 11th at 6:00pm.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:30pm
Minutes respectfully submitted by,
Stewart Putney
Secretary, “Neighbors in South Roanoke”