Suburban Acres Civic League
Minutes for General Meeting Held on: June 10, 2019
Prepared by: Peter Beznoska
Meeting called to order by Louis Gabriel, President, at 6:30 PM, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance.
Noelle Gabriel - Norfolk School Board
Dan Tubbs - Head of Norfolk Christian School
Nate Kinnison - President, Larchmont/Edgewater Civic League
Garnzie West - President, Coronado Civic League
Socko Pearson - Vice President, Wards Corner Civic League
Philip Hernandez - Candidate for Virginia House of Delegates District 100
Community Resource Officer Report: Given by Officer William Old, Norfolk PD
- 9 incidents reported at Harris Teeter Shopping Center, 2 at Harris Teeter, 6 at ABC Store, 1 @ Beauty Supply Store. 1 cleared by arrest
- Nothing reported in the overall neighborhood last month
- Greek Fest accident is still under investigation. Individual crossed at Fife Street. Walk sign was not operational at the time. No other information available as this time.
- Captain John Colin and Sector LT Chris Bryant introduced themselves
- Reminder of curfew in Norfolk of 11 PM. If you see youth under 18 out after 11 PM, please call Norfolk PD
- Member concerns expressed included: speeding on Thole St., crossing guard at Suburban Park Elementary
Special Guest Speaker - Noelle Gabriel - Chair, Norfolk School Board
Due to a mixup in schedules with the Mayor, Ms. Gabriel graciously spoke to the membership and answered questions about the state of Norfolk Public Schools. Topics covered included:
- Scholarship awards for Norfolk Public schools class of 2019
- Comprehensive career technical high school developments
- Coordination with local businesses like the Shipyard, Stihl, Northrop Grumman - preparing students for the high-paying jobs available in technical fields.
- Superintendent Turnover
- Accreditation updates - half of all schools currently accredited, academic accountability plan has Norfolk as high performing by 2024
- Capital improvement plan - need $16 million per year per analysis to keep schools up, currently getting $2 million per year.
- Retaining teachers
- Great school board relationship with state and national reps.
- Approximately $0.03 of the property tax increase went to Norfolk Public Schools
- Revenue sharing agreement with city announced.
- Every elementary school is at full capacity right now
- Enrollment 29k students currently, vs. 34k 6 years ago.
Main Guest Speaker - Kenny Alexander - Mayor, City of Norfolk
Mayor Kenny Alexander heard about the mixup in schedules for his appearance at the civic league meeting from a text message from Noelle Gabriel. He dropped what he was doing and rushed to the meeting, arriving in time to provide an enlightening talk to the membership. It was an impressive display of civic leadership from Mr. Alexander. Topics covered by the Mayor included:
- Revenue sharing announcement with Norfolk Public Schools
- Crime is at a 32 year low
- Developments at St. Paul’s neighborhood - 54% of crime originates in that area of Norfolk.
- Deconcentrating poverty
- Providing good jobs through Career Technical High School - graduate students with “industry recognized credentials”
- Status of consideration of Casino in downtown Norfolk - city prefers Pamunkey plans vs. private plans.
- Status of city-owned property in Military Circle area
- Next steps for MacArthur center mall after Nordstom pulls out.
- 5G/Cox - Verizon would like to put 5G in East Beach, but the city is not letting them proceed unless they provide a plan to roll out 5G across Norfolk.
Membership: 3 new memberships
Neighborhood Watch: No Updates
Wards Corner Task Force: Fire station at end of Thole Street will be rebuilt and renovated over the next few years. The project is still in design phase and the civic league will reach out to the Fire Chief to see if an update can be provided at future meetings.
- Thank you to Jannette Woodruff for organizing the food and thank you to Guad’s for providing the food.
- Eggleston 5k run at Virginia Wesleyan on June 15th
- 4th of July Parade and Picnic scheduled for 10AM at Suburban Park Elementary. We will be having a sidewalk parade and a cookout after the parade. Decorate your bikes, wagons and other non-motorized vehicles. Prizes will be awarded. Sheriff Joe Baron will lead the parade. Any volunteers willing to help us set up should be at Suburban Park Elementary by 8:30-8:45 on the 4th.
- July 5th - Ocean View Park Fireworks, Shore Thing Band
- Next civic league meeting is July 8th at Norfolk Collegiate
- Speakers will include someone from the Virginia Zoo and someone from the Norfolk Fire Department to discuss the remodeling of Station Number 9 on Thole Street.
- Member announcement: Norfolk Senior Center Art Fest @ Prime Plus, now through June 21st.
- Adopt-a-Spot scheduled for August 17th, 9 AM at Suburban Park Elementary. We now have an Adopt-A-Spot sign just beyond the fire station on Thole Street.
- Honda of Norfolk accepts electronics, motor oil, anti-freeze, old tires for recycling.
- The Civic League urges members to sign up for nextdoor.com to stay connected to things happening in the neighborhood.
Old Business: None
- Need volunteers to bring food to the August civic league meeting
- The civic league received thank you notes from the kids at Suburban Park Elementary for our donation to their field trip to Nauticus this spring.
- Westbound speed display sign is up on Thole Street.
MEETING ADJOURNED, 8:00 pm