Dayton's Bluff Community Council Work Plan 2014

Background

The Dayton’s Bluff Community Council is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to fostering citizen participation and promoting neighborhood assets for all. Formed in 1971, the organization’s mission is to be a valuable community resource for organizing and supporting collaborative action by its stakeholders to improve the quality of life in Dayton’s Bluff. DBCC programs serve homeowners, renters, youth, businesses and employees through engagement of community members in programs that focus on leadership, equity, economic development and quality housing. DBCC is part of St. Paul’s District Council system, which promotes inclusion of resident voices in issues and decisions of governmental agencies and elected officials.

The Dayton's Bluff Community Council sponsors and promotes multiple programs and activities, each of which has had significant impact:

  • Make It Happen on E. 7th Street, a program that has advanced community and economic development outcomes for the E. 7th Street business district, including an award for a $500,000 capital investment fund for business growth from the St. Paul STAR program.
  • A community-elected Board and active Board Committees, including Arts and Cultures, Communications, Equity, Green Space, Land Use, Vacant Buildings
  • Minneapolis/Saint Paul and Dayton's Bluff Neighborhood Home Tour has played a significant role in bringing new residents who purchase homes in the neighborhood.
  • Dayton’s Bluff District Forum, a community newspaper mailed monthly to every residence.
  • Micro entrepreneur Training and Support Program (in partnership with NDC), annually training 20 potential business owners, 90% of whom are people of color from the eastside of St. Paul.
  • Market on the Bluff – Place-making and community building through weekly markets, featuring local vendors of agricultural produce and home crafts.
  • Mind Munch – 12 weekly Art of Hosting facilitated conversations and lunch involved over 100 people in its first year.
  • Youth and Art programming, youth engagement, mentoring, leadership and community service.
  • Night Out on E. 7th Street Business Fair, which in its first year drew over 1,000 people and 65 business participants.
  • Fostering East Side Transit Equity Conversations – innovative Partnership of 6 East Side organizations that engaged over 600 people in conversations about transit and equity.
  • Development of the East Side Enterprise Center in partnership with Latino Economic Development Center – DBCC located the building, negotiated the purchase and identified a viable partner. This Multi-cultural center is opening in June 2014.

2014 Goals/Objectives/Activities

Goal 1:

  • Link local activities and programs (including housing, transportation, job creation, business development) to investments and opportunities that connect Dayton's Bluff to the growing local, regional and statewide economy.

Objective 1.1 (Business Development)

  • Ensure the design and implementation of programming for the East Side Enterprise Center, a cross-cultural community economic development resource center opening in 2014.

Activities:

  • Convene multiple organizations that represent culturally specific groups and will offer training, mentoring or business development services to promote East Side business growth
  • Work with all program partners to define program principles, core values and common operational policies
  • Market the District to support economic growth and sustainability and to encourage businesses to relocate to E 7th

Objective1.2 (Capital Investment)

  • Promote capital investment that facilitates business growth, job creation, quality rental housing, home ownership and public infrastructure enhancement.

Activities:

  • Oversee allocation of the Business Growth Capital Investment Fund (City of St. Paul STAR and McKnight Foundation funds) for the E. 7th Street businesses in the Make it Happen District.
  • Promote continuing public investment in Dayton's Bluff through application for City funding cycles (STAR & CIB).
  • Ensure 8 Dayton's Bluff homes are listed in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Home Tour and Sponsor the Dayton's Bluff Vacant Home Tour to promote homeownership.
  • Support developers of affordable housing and locally owned businesses through informed community review, decision-making and recommendations to City officials.

Objective 1.3 (Transit)

  • Continue leadership and participation in Fostering an East Side Equity Conversation (FESTEC)

Activities:

  • Actively seek funding for FESTEC
  • Participate in FESTEC Steering Committee strategic planning and action
  • Participate in regular meetings of the Community Engagement Steering Committee of the regional Corridors of Opportunity Community Engagement Team

Goal 2:

  • Strengthen community capacity and alliances through public gatherings and events, quality public spaces, and a center for cross-cultural community enterprise.

Objective 2.1

  • Direct the planning and implementation of large community events and smaller series events that build community awareness and civic pride.

Activities:

  • Night Out on E.7th Street Business Fair – annual event promoting local business district
  • Mind Munch – series of meals and topical conversations using Art of Hosting facilitation techniques)
  • Market on the Bluff – weekly summer marketplace for local produce
  • 15 National Night Out events

Objective 2.2

  • Promote beautification, landscaping, public gathering places and green space development throughout the neighborhood.

Activities:

  • Promote community gardening, urban agriculture projects and use of local parks and trails
  • Plant streetscape gardens and distribute flowering pots in Dayton's Bluff business districts
  • Facilitate litter and graffiti clean-up on E. 7th Street business district; support public art and landscaping projects
  • Promote Spring and Fall Clean-up - Recruit volunteers, promote event

Objective 2.3

  • Accomplish the acquisition, rehabilitation and timely opening of the East Side Enterprise Center (ESEC), a partnership of DBCC and Latino Economic Development Center.

Activities:

  • Participate in real estate development project to manage design and construction, and to ensure adherence to timelines, compliance with regulatory requirements, and effective management of development budget
  • Coordinate ESEC Grand Opening in June 2014
  • Move Dayton's Bluff Community Council operations/offices to ESEC

Goal 3:

  • Create a model for a stable and sustainable Equity Community that is effectively engaged across race, ethnicity and culture, as well as social and economic stratums.

Objective 3.1

  • Design a Community Equity Covenant that will form a common set of principles and strategies for community action, as well as guide discussion, analysis and informed decision-making by the Council and its community partners.
  • Activities (Note: The Equity Committee of the Community Council will take the lead in developing the Community Equity Covenant. Other committees, community leaders and partners will help implement the model.)
  • Implement a series of Equity Dialogues open to Board Members and Community Leaders.
  • Ensure that rewrite of the organizational bylaws better serves diversity and inclusion of all members of the community.
  • Prepare a Community Equity Covenant document for adoption by the community at the Annual Meeting in October 2014.

Objective 3.2

  • Provide multiple opportunities for learning, connection, and action on behalf of all residents.

Activities:

  • Sponsor 10 community equity conversations, public meetings or issue forums
  • Promote active Council Committees and area block clubs
  • Sponsor or promote 3 seminars or workshops that build community knowledge and capacity
  • Work with local youth organizations to formulate a youth leadership and outreach network for young East Side residents.
  • Sponsor a Leadership for Equity training for 15-25 East Side resident leaders.
  • Staff Council Committees related to Community Participation goals stated in City Contracts. Coordinate meetings for residents, city staff, elected officials, police, etc. on neighborhood issues.

Goal 4:

  • Ensure effective governance and management of resources and continue to support community leadership through the Board, Committees and special projects.

Objective 4.1

  • Fulfill fundraising goals set in 2014 budget.
  • Activities:
  • Seek new funding sources and maintain existing funder relationships
  • Conduct events and provide services that can generate revenue (eg. Strip Club, Night Out, Market on Bluff, recycling, etc.)

Objective 4.2

  • Rewrite by-laws to simplify and better reflect general operational goals; define specific policies and procedures through Board action.

Activities:

  • Convene a by-laws committee to propose new document for adoption by the Board.
  • Establish a Board Policies and Procedures manual.

Objective 4.3

  • Manage all land use and community development issues affecting the community.

Activities:

  • Staff Land Use/Vacant Building Committee to review and make recommendations on land use related issues.
  • Monitor all major developments and ensure representation of community interests.

Objective 4.4

  • Review and revise all written or electronic communications and networking modes/procedures.

Activities:

  • Rewrite Vision and Mission Statements
  • Create new logo and printed materials
  • Renew the website and ensure active interaction with current social media sites