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THE RECORD OF THE CHARLESTOWN RESIDENTS’ COUNCIL
August 7, 2018
Residents’ Council Website: ccicharlestown.org
President Steve Harders called the regular meeting of the Residents’ Council [the Council] to order at 7:30 pm August 7, 2018. The July 3, 2018 minutes were approved as distributed.
64 association members attended. Visitors included residents, Naomi McAfee and Charles Denton, and Karline Tierney, members of the Board of Directors; and Adam Dickson, Associate Executive Director. The Council observed a moment of silence for those who have passed away during the last month.
ANNOUNCEMENTS/ PRESIDENT’S REPORT (Steve Harders):
Steve Harders gave kudos to the Administration’s sincere effort to better understand the likes and dislikes of the residents with the Questionnaire that was sent out. This coming Thursday, August 9, Clara will tell us about the responses to it and the actions to be taken.
VICE PRESIDENT’S REPORT (Wendel Thompson):
Wendel Thompson reported that the Charlestown Security are now vigorously enforcing the parking rules on campus.
SECRETARY’S REPORT (Ed Piechowiak):
Ann MacKay, national president of NaCCRA, the National Continuing Care Residents Association spoke at the Council Work Session presented the advantages of belonging to a group that is dedicated to being a voice for older people when meeting with the legislators, public officials, and providers of CCRs.
TREASURER’S REPORT (Al Davies):
Dues collections have amounted to $3,009.50 with 72% of residents contributing.
BENEVOLENT CARE (Jean Eichenlaub):
Tin Cup Golf Tournament had proceeds of more than $30,000. Benevolent Care month is underway and invitations have been sent out. The theme for the Gala scheduled for September 25 is “The Emerald City”. We have already obtained substantial auctions items.
COMMUNICATIONS (John Murnane):
CONSERVATION (Bill Tilles):
There was no August meeting. Recycling and trash numbers track the last 3 months.
DINING SERVICES (Carolyn Thompson):
Highlights of the Coffee with the managers were reported. Among them were a Service Task Force was started to improve service in all restaurants; a focus group to discuss retail items and menu ideas for the Shortline; Charlestown Farmer’s Market is Thursday from 8:00 am-1:00 pm; we now have menus for the visually impaired at the Host Desk; and plans are in process for a crab feast on September 15 at the Terrace.
FINANCE (Gil Fisher):
The Finance Committee did not meet in July.
GROUNDS (Ted Durr):
An extra drain has been added ball field. Stone was placed around the footing of the Nature Trail covered bridge to help with erosion control.
HEALTH SERVICES (Louise Dempsey):
Our second successful collection of old/unused medications was held on June 27th. EMV users meetings resumed in July. Bill Howe of Renaissance Garden to become the Vice President of the Continuing Care Residents’ Council. The Pharmacy is contacting those people who received the first Shingrix shot to inform them that the second shot is now available.
HOUSEKEEPING (Diane Lyons):
List of housekeeping issues found by committee members was forwarded to Michelle Fenn.
LEGISLATIVE/POLITICAL (Anne Erfle):
The Committee adopted a motion recommending that the Residents Council join the National Continuing Care Residents Association (NaCCRA).
MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING (Ken Jarboe):
The Committee listed all of the maintenance items that were completed in the last month, especially the corrections made to the Air Conditioning in the Refectory. A list of new items that need attention was given to Jesse Morgan, including flooding in the Music Room and the Lobby 7 cart storage area.
RESIDENT LIFE (Fran Ashby):
There was no meeting on the past month.
SAFETY & SECURITY (Veronica Coleman):
The Committee reported numerous problems resulting from residents not abiding to the rules for operation of EMVs, controlling your pets, and feeding the wildlife. At least 4 cars sustained significant damage from squirrels that are being fed near the parking lots.
NOMINATING & ELECTIONS (Janet Allan):
The work of the Nominating and Election Committee is essentially complete – election is tomorrow.
The slate of officers proposed for 2018-2019 was approved unanimously. President – Wendel Thompson, Vice-President – Anne Erfle, Treasurer – Jack Murnane, Secretary – Sherry Stewart.
A motion for the Residents’ Council to join NaCCRA was defeated based on an interpretation of the By Laws that indicated that the Residents’ Association would be the body that should be voting. The effort was postponed until work outside of the meeting was done to assure that the proper procedures are followed.
WORDS FROM MANAGEMENT (Clara Parker):
Adam Dickson represented management at the meeting. He thanked the current Council for all it has done this year and passed on the thanks from Clara Parker as well. He thanked the residents for their participation in the mid-year Questionnaire. Results will be presented August 9 at 10:00 am in the Conference Center.
The Halloran survey will still be taken in the fall. A ribbon cutting is planned for the completion of the Cross Creek Lobby renovation and the opening of the Fitness Center annex in the lobby at 1:30 on August 28.
President Harders adjourned the formal meeting at 8:45 p.m.
Ed Piechowiak, Residents’ Council Secretary
Sherry Stewart, Residents’ Council Assistant Secretary
If the reader wants to see more detail, below is the full text of the reports.
ANNOUNCEMENTS/ PRESIDENT’S REPORT: Steve Harders
Our Mission moment for today is different from the usual ones. The nomination committee wanted to focus on the mid-term elections. Since harmonious living does not only deal with interaction between residents but also with the staff. I thought we should give kudos to the Administration’s sincere effort to better understand the likes and dislikes of the residents. This coming Thursday, Clara will tell us about the responses to the recent questionnaires and the actions to be taken. Thanks, Clara and the Executive Team, for listening to the residents’ concerns.
The Mission moments are followed by announcements. I have three items:
- The end for this Council year is coming nearer. Later in the proceedings, under Unfinished Business, we will vote on the nominees for the executive positions for the next Council. Under New Business we will have a motion for the Council to join NaCCRA, the National Continuing Care Residents Association.
- The Executive Committee will meet tomorrow, August 9th, at 9:30 AM in the Council Office. Tomorrow is also the date of the election of the new candidates. – Our monthly Council Work Session will be held on Monday, August 13th, at 2:00 PM in Brookside Classroom 1. We will not have a featured guest speaker, because there is enough year-end business to go through. For instance, please be sure to bring your Council binders to the meeting so that they can be updated. We will also consider a request to fully or partially fund the work of maintaining the archives. On the same day, next Monday, August 13th, we will have the Annual Meeting of the Residents’ Association at 7:30 PM in the Conference Center. All residents are automatically members of the Association. During the ceremony the changing of the guard occurs and the new Council gets introduced to the community at large. You will see flyers on the bulletin boards, the candidate posters, the websites and channel 972. The new Council will then go through an introductory session on August 15. It will include a luncheon with the participation of the heads of management departments so that the new committee chairmen can get acquainted with their counterparts.
- Finally, a couple of months ago, we announced that we would be sending special invitations to new residents to acquaint themselves with the Council and attend Council meetings. We are up to date with this project. If anybody in the audience is here because of that invitation, “thanks and welcome” to you.
VICE PRESIDENT’S REPORT: Wendel Thompson
It has been a quiet month at Charlestown with no submission of Council Communication Forms, those documents representing someone’s failure at getting a problem resolved. So I have nothing to report in that area. But I can report activity on the part of Charlestown Security. I received a ticket for parking my car in a guest parking space. I know some others have received similar tickets. And I am now parking in the front lot farther from my apartment. But I’m retired, so I have the time to walk a hundred steps further.
SECRETARY’S REPORT: Ed Piechowiak
Our special guest for the July 9, 2018 Council Work Session was Anne MacKay, a resident who is also the national president of NaCCRA, the National Continuing Care Residents Association. She presented the advantages of belonging to a group that is dedicated to being a voice for older people when meeting with the legislators, public officials, and providers of CCRs who make decisions affecting the lives of senior citizens. Membership of the Residents’ Council was to be put to a vote at the August Residents’ Council meeting.
Other topics discussed included 1) the brief Residents’ survey that was taken whose results will be presented at the August 9 Town Hall and 2) the new package delivery process for items coming from FEDEX and UPS.
TREASURER’S REPORT: Al Davies
The Council Finance Report for the Month of July, dated August 1, 2018 shows two deposits made (#19 and #20) for a total of $52.00. This brings the total for the Residents’ Association dues received to $3,009.50. All checks that have been written have cleared and no fees have been charged. The bank balance matches our checkbook balance of $4,779.88. The participation rate for the Residents Association dues collection this year was about 67% of the apartments and 72% of the residents.
BENEVOLENT CARE: Jean Eichenlaub, Chair
The meeting opened with Patti Santoni and Lisa Zehring from Philanthropy.
Patti reported on the Tin Cup Golf Tournament which had been rescheduled from June because of bad weather. It was a good day with proceeds of more than $30,000 net, including $1,625 from the 50/50 raffle. Next year the plan is to increase the fee. Rolling Road Golf Club fee per golfer consumes much of the fee we charge ($105 per person).
Committee discussion on how to improve participation in Benevolent Care Fund donations. At present only 37% of the resident households donate and only 12% donate at the $20+ month (or $240+ per year) level. A very informative column written by Council President, Steve Harders, emphasized the importance of providing a “home for life” in this month’s Sunburst.
BCF Month plans include:
Patti will again present an ELLIC program in September. Assistant Executive director, Nathan Blumberg and Admin Assistant Mary David will try to get a real Benevolent Care story (similar to the one in 2016). Pam and Patti will also re-do the Financial Assurance presentation on September 25th at 1pm in the Auditorium.
Other efforts include a campaign letter to residents at the beginning of Benevolent Care Month – August 13 thru September 30. Information tables staffed by committee members just to answer questions. Looking for creative ideas for table signs to attract residents. (send ideas to Patti). Completed list of those who signed up will be emailed to committee next week.
The theme for the Gala is “The Emerald City”. Scheduled for September 25, the invitations will be mailed out early August. They have already obtained substantial auctions items ( i.e. Southwest Airline tickets; dinners at good restaurants, casino dinner and game; etc.) Discussed whether residents not attending could also participate in the auction.
Special music by “Mood Swings” the official band of the State Governor. Since the theme is based on Wizard of Oz, maybe Jim Thompson of the film library could show the film.
Next Meeting will be August 22th 2:00 pm CTS 116.
Ted Durr asked about any benefit we received from the Rolling Road Country Club. Jean said that they charged us $105 per person and our fee per golfer this year is $200. Our big benefit is from the sponsors who are drawn to the Country Club.
Sherry Stewart asked that the difference between the Benevolent Care Fund and the benevolent Care Foundation be explained. Jean explained that the Fund is the equivalent of a checking account where money made from various fund raisers is deposited to pay the bills while the Foundation is more like a savings account where investments are made.
COMMUNICATIONS: John Murnane, Chair
The Communications Committee met on July 23rd at 2:00 pm in Charlestown Square classroom 216.
- The members of the Little Theatre Group are working with Tom to arrange for the recording of three TV skits for presentation on Channel 972. The skits are meant to inform the residents of the activities undertaken by each Council committee on the residents’ behalf.
- The committee members agreed that the changes to the package delivery system for residents, allowing UPS and Fedex to deliver packages to residents’ apartments, was a good move despite the short and limited notice to residents.
- An ELLIC class will be presented by the Website Subcommittee in the Auditorium during the 2018-2019 time period. The purpose of the presentation is to educate the residents with regard to the CCI website content and features.
- At this time, the current website is celebrating one year of keeping Charlestown informed. Congratulations! We owe the webmasters and the committee members a thank you for their time and efforts.
The next meetings of the Website Subcommittee and the Communications Committee will be on September 24th, at 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm, respectively, in Charlestown Square classroom #116.
CONSERVATION: Bill Tilles, Chair
There was no meeting in July nor is one scheduled for August. The numbers for tracking the recycling and the trash are compatible with the numbers from the last 3 months.
DINING SERVICES: Carolyn Thompson, Chair
The Council Dining Committee met July 16, 2018 with 13 present including 2 guests and Ken Zahn from Dining Services. We will not meet in August, but the coffees with the Managers will meet in August.
This has been a busy year with our new Dining Program—“Signature Dining.” Change is hard! Residents and staff had to have patience with all the adjustments made.
The following is a summary from our meeting:
- The Dietary Focus Group on our committee did not meet in July or August. They will meet September 7th in BR-2 at 10:00 am.
- Welcome to all the new staff and servers in the restaurants; it takes time to adjust to students leaving for school.
- With the closing of the Shortline for renovations, there has been an increase in service at the other restaurants requiring a shift of staff to compensate. We miss the Shortline.
- A focus group to discuss retail items and menu ideas for the Shortline met July 17th with great feedback and suggestions.
- New menus started July 9th with specials starting July 16. The new menus have gotten praise as the best ever.
- The Charlestown Farmer’s Market is every Thursday from 8:00 am-1:00 pm through August 30 at the Chesapeake Fireplace Lounge.
- A Service Task Force was started to improve service in all restaurants. New employees go through a 6-day training and all servers will undergo retraining.
- July 4th reported large numbers served: 275 at the Fireside and 360 at the Terrace.
- We now have provided menus for the visually impaired at the Host Desk for pickup.
- The servers have improved and most are doing a great job.
- Working on improving our carry out process to ensure accurate filling of orders.
- There was a successful beach themed bar night at the Fireside, July 24.
- We continually encourage at all restaurants to give “on the spot” feedback to address issue moments.
- We are waiting for the new dietician to address our Dietary Focus Group and Dining Town Hall Meeting.
- The Chefs will have closer supervision of the cooks to make sure they have the correct recipes and are following them correctly so there is consistency.
- A crab feast is planned for September 15 at the Terrace.
- When there is a “buffet” in a dining room, your name and number will be taken at the Hostess Desk.
In conclusion remember:
- Attend the restaurant coffee to express issues at the restaurant you go to.
- Attend Menu Focus Groups to share your ideas for the next menu.
- Attend the Dietary Focus Group with your dietary health issues the first Friday of each month.
- Attend the Dining Services town Hall meeting the last Friday of the month in the Auditorium at 11:00 am to get updates across the campus.
Remember the easiest way to get date updates on the above meetings is to pick up the paper copy of the monthly Events Calendar at the Hostess Desk in your lobby the first of the month.
The next meeting of the Dining Committee will be on September 17, 2018.
FINANCE: Gil Fisher, Chair
The Finance Committee did not meet in July because of a scheduling problem. The next Committee meeting will be at 9:00 am on August 28 in Brookside Classroom 2.
GROUNDS: Ted Durr, Chair
Committee grounds audit reports were given.
The sod where the ash trees were removed has grown well thanks to the rainfall and efforts of the staff.
The ball field drainage problems are still being worked on although an extra drain has been added.
Stone was placed around the footing of the Nature Trail covered bridge to help with erosion control.
The Lake Charles Improvements report is due the end of September. The next steps will involve prioritizing improvements and budgeting. The first step is the improvement of the electrical system. The Administration is proposing an expenditure of up to $500,000 for the 2019 budget. The next step is up to the Charlestown Board.
The Black Swan Yacht Club is especially interested in some of the improvements such as trail improvement and improvement of access to the pier.
The committee thanked Vice Chair Joni Guhne for her service this past year.
Ted indicated that he would meet with Ryan Truitt to discuss issues that could be addressed now.
The Grounds Committee will continue to meet from 10:00 to 11:00 am on the 4th Tuesday of the month in the General Services Conference room.
Diane Lyons added that the Pharmacy is contacting those people who received the first Shingrix shot that the second shot is available now.
HEALTH SERVICES: Louise Dempsey, Chair
The meeting was held on July 10th at 11am with 8 members and 2 guests present.
There is still a national shortage of the Shingrix shingles vaccine. Our CVS Pharmacist, Jeromy Finck, expects a shipment by the end of July.
Our second collection of old/unused medications held on June 27th was again very successful with a large quantity of drugs collected. A dedicated collection day will be scheduled quarterly.
Some pet owners are abusing the pet policy. This issue is a concern and is being monitored by Housekeeping, Grounds, and Management.
EMV users regular meetings resumed in July. The meetings are intended to make users aware of the requirements to be an EMV user and the need to abide by rules.
Dr. Raymond Bahr, Cardiologist -renowned as the founder of the first Chest Pain ER – recently spoke in the auditorium on “early treatment of heart attack symptoms” a subject that he is passionate about. He believes this initiative is a way to save lives. Unfortunately, the date of the event was late in coming out so the audience turnout was less than anticipated. Dr. Bahr agreed to do an interview on 972 on the subject so that all residents will have an opportunity to hear the information. The video will be available on 972, MyErickson, etc.
A resident brought an issue to the Committee regarding paper cups in the Fitness Center. The paper cups have been stacked on paper towels near the water fountains. To get a cup, sometimes you had to separate them by pulling on the rims which risked spreading germs. When addressed with Teresa, Fitness Center Manager, she agreed and has already had a cup dispenser installed on the wall near the fountains.
Bill Howe announced his willingness to become the Vice President of the Continuing Care Residents’ Council.
Social Worker, Shannon Miller, will be transferred to the Medical Center and a new social worker will be hired for Continuing Care.
The Treasure Sale Boutique will begin monthly sales in August in the CW meeting hall. Only cash or checks will be accepted for sales. This is an opportunity for those residents to shop, either by themselves or with family members, without leaving their building. David Gearing, will put the information in the Continuing Care bi-monthly electronic family newsletter.
The Health Committee will not meet in August.
Diane Lyons added that the Pharmacy is contacting those people who received the first Shingrix shot to inform them that the second shot is now available.
HOUSEKEEPING: Diane Lyons, Chair
The meeting was held on Friday, July 20. The meeting was sparsely attended but reports were submitted by all committee members. This list was forwarded to Michelle Fenn, Housekeeping Department. She indicated that all items were noted.
Maintenance Dept. was contacted directly regarding a large hole in the wall of the Chapel Court laundry room.
The committee will not meet in August. Next meeting is September 21.
LEGISLATIVE/ POLITICAL: Anne Erfle, Chair
The committee met on July 11, 2018. The Legislative/Political Committee adopted a motion recommending that the Residents Council join the National Continuing Care Residents Association (NaCCRA). (The annual dues per community are $200.) The committee also adopted a motion recommending that the Legislative/Political Committee Chairman serve as the council point of contact for NaCCRA. The council will consider whether to adopt the committee’s recommendations under New Business.
The committee also made plans for inviting candidates for Maryland Governor and the US House and Senate to Charlestown before the November 6, 2018 general election.
The committee will not meet in August. The next meeting will be September 12, 2018 at 10:00 am in BR1.
MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING: Ken Jarboe, Chair
The Committee met on July 24, 2018 with General Services staff Jesse Morgan.
- Drain piping, sinks, and disposals for specific apartments in St. Charles have been inspected and cleared of any blockages that were found.
- Repairs at St. Charles cart storage area, including wall protection and corner guards, have been started.
- Preliminary work for the renovation of St. Charles elevators has been started.
- Convex mirrors for the corners of a short hallway in St. Charles have been installed.
- All Auditorium ceiling fixture bulbs are to be replaced. 2 new ballasts are to be installed. Problems with circuit breakers causing a temporary total outage of the lighting have been corrected.
- Instructions for the proper use of temperature controls in the Refectory have been given so that the dining area does not become overheated.
- Dead trees at Buildings 8 and 9 have been marked for removal. A specific date in July has not been set for this work.
- Work completed includes entrance door hardware repairs, hallway ceiling light bulb replacements, and wall and door frame repairs.
- To preclude recurring flooding of the Music Room, General Services suggested that a gutter drain system could be used to collect surface water runoff before it reaches the ground level window sills of this room.
- Items requiring repair or attention in various buildings include elevator door frames, stairway entrance door, outdoor lighting controls, Lobby 7 cart storage area, loose handrails, elevator call button malfunction, damaged wall panels, and torn and damaged vinyl cove base.
Reminder: This Committee will not meet in August, 2018.
RESIDENT LIFE: Fran Ashby, Chair
There was no meeting in July nor is one scheduled for August.
SAFETY & SECURITY: Veronica Coleman, Chair
The meeting was held on July 24. Present were 4 members, RC President, 5 guests, Cindy Ripple, and Don Grove, Director of Sales and Marketing.
It is anticipated that there will be a cubby stuffer to educate all residents about EMV user rules and how to report EMV incidences such as speeding and accidents. Another EMV users meeting may be held in August. Also, EMV vendors will be contacted to promote servicing of vehicles possibly at the meeting. It is highly suggested all residents document incidences and pass them onto Security.
General Services produced a flyer that was delivered to the Pet Lovers group members reminding owners of their responsibilities in caring for pets. The flyer will be repeated in the Sunburst for all residents to see. Mike Fischer will discuss Pets at the August 2 Town Hall Meeting. Disregard for rules regarding pets is taken seriously and after 3 written notices, a Resident may be asked to find another home for a pet. We suggest Residents take pictures of violations of the rules.
The Committee continued discussion about Wildlife feeding. Encouraging deer, foxes, squirrels, other rodents, and wildlife to come closer to buildings is not desirable. One concern is deer ticks which dogs can pick up from areas where the deer have been and bring them into buildings. In addition, 4 cars have been damaged by squirrels who are fed near cars in the parking lots. Again, as with EMV and Pet violations, pictures and documentation are necessary to alert Administration.
The solution of these issues depends on action by Management, but we as residents must make reports.
Being a good neighbor means good stewardship by following the rules, gently reminding those who do not, and reporting those who refuse to follow the rules.
The next meeting is September 25, at 1:00 pm, in Brookside Classroom 1.
NOMINATING & ELECTIONS: Janet Allan
The Nominating and Election Committee did not meet in July. However the Chairs and several committee members completed tasks to prepare for the August 8, 2018 election. Eight posters containing the photos and bios of the 11 candidates were placed in all the dining areas in Independent Living, in the RG Lobby and on two of the residential floors in Caton Woods. Election packets were distributed to residents July 2. An Election Orientation meeting for Election Day Captains and their teams was held August 1 from 7-8:00 pm in CTS116.
UNFINISHED BUSINESS: The slate of officers proposed by the ad hoc Nominating Committee for Officers was presented at the last Council meeting on July 3. The slate is to be voted on at the August 7 meeting (today) and was as follows.
President – Wendel Thompson
Vice-president – Anne Erfle
Secretary – Sherry Stewart
Treasurer – Jack Murnane
Additional nominees were solicited from Council members before the election for each officer and there were none. Each candidate on the slate was approved unanimously by the Council members.
There have been discussions among the Council members, the administration, and NaCCRA members regarding the possibility of the Residents’ Council joining NaCCRA, the National Continuing Care Residents Association. There can be only one motion of the floor at a time, and the latter motions that would be made are dependent upon the outcome of preceding motions. To start, the Secretary made a motion that the Residents’ Council join the National Continuing Care Residents Association (NaCCRA). Seconded. During discussion of the motion Veronica spoke against the motion expressing her support for NaCCRA as an individual but her concern that the Council could not join such an organization. The Residents’ Association might, but it would need a budget item to do so. Sherry Stewart spoke of the recent presentation by Ann MacKay, the national president of NaCCRA, and the benefits that might accrue to us if we joined. The Parliamentarian spoke against the motion, saying that there is nothing in our By-Laws that says that we can join such an organizations. The vote failed 5 – 7.
The Secretary then made a motion that the Policies and Procedures Manual of the Residents’ Council, Supplement B: Acronyms and Organizations, be amended to include “NaCCRA-National Continuing Care Residents Association is a national organization of older adults living in CCRs and of organizations in CCRs representing older adults. The NaCCRA’s purpose is to promote, protect and improve the CCRC lifestyle.” Motion was seconded and approved.
Bill Tilles then clarified that NaCCRA allows community association memberships. Janet Allan suggested that we urge the Residents’ Association join NaCCRA. Steve said that it would be worth pursuing and urged Janet to bring it up as a topic of consideration.
WORDS FROM MANAGEMENT:
Adam Dickson represented management at the meeting. He thanked the current Council for all it has done this year and passed on the thanks from Clara Parker as well.
He thanked the residents for their participation in the mid-year Questionnaire. On August 9 from 10:00 to 11:00 am there will be a follow up presentation by management and members of the Focus Group.
The Halloran survey will still be taken in the fall.
Everyone is looking forward to the completion of the Cross Creek Lobby renovation and the opening of the Fitness Center annex in the lobby. A ribbon cutting is planned for 1:30 on August 28.