NORTHERN CALIFORNIA RECYCLING ASSOCIATION
Thursday, September 17, 2015
Submitted by: Jennifer Cutter
Location: John Moore’s Office, 1970 Broadway Ave., Oakland
NCRA Board member attendees: President Laura McKaughan, Jessica Connolly, Doug Brooms, Jessica Robinson, Arthur Boone, Steven Chiv, Tomer Shapira, David Krueger, John Moore, Alex Hoffman, and Jennifer Cutter (arrived 6:50 p.m.).
NCRA Administrative Staff: Juliana Gerber
Guests/members/friends: Adrienne Gembala, Recology SF Operations
6:41 p.m. Call to Order
Board minutes from 6:41 to 6:50 recorded by Arthur Boone.
July minutes were approved as submitted. 10-0-0
Motion to approve printed copy of meeting agenda with amendments (added under Administrative Activity a letter for tax exempt status and for Actions Requiring Discussion/Policy decisions ATM card). 10-0-0
Financial Report for July/August 2015 (Robinson)
Treasurer Robinson presented the financials for July and August and reviewed major expense items. In July, NCRA awarded Gary Liss $1,000 for some zero waste work and conveyed $500 on behalf of ZWUSA to the Post Landfill Action Network (PLAN). In August NCRA received two grants from the EAB: $34,784 to fund multi-unit outreach in Oakland and $3,000 for materials Report accepted as distributed.
EAB Update (McKaughan)
The multi-family organics outreach in Oakland is going well. McKaughan and Robinson will be completing follow-up with property managers to get feedback on how the organics program is going/participation levels.
Update on archive project (Gerber)
Gerber is working with Heidi Melander to obtain more files. They are on a USB stick. Dan Knapp and Mary Lou of Urban Ore generously covered cost for scanning a large amount of files. There are 25 folders of documents and lots of subfolders on Google Drive. Archive dates back to 1983, but there are quite a few holes. David Tam also to review documents stored at Arthur’s house and submit those to Gerber for scanning.
Action Item: Gerber to produce for a content page for how the archive files are organized and what information can be found in there. When completed, this will be distributed to the Board and Directors can request to be granted read-only access should they want to see something.
Update on logo project (Gerber)
A survey was sent out September 2 and a reminder September 16. All board members need to complete survey. Brooms, Cutter, and Krueger still need to complete the survey. The deadline is Friday, September, 18.
Action Item: Brooms, Cutter and Krueger will fill out the survey by 9/18. McKaughan will update Brooms’s email address for the listserv so all his emails are going to the same place.
Letter for tax exempt status
McKaughan received an IRS letter indicating taxes weren’t filed and this could affect NCRA’s tax exempt status. These need to be filed as soon as possible and any monetary penalty paid.
Action Item: Hoffman agreed to call IRS to see what we need to do and she and Krueger agreed to help make sure NCRA’s taxes are filed promptly. Robinson will be kept in the loop so she can take this one for 2015.
Actions Requiring Expenditures
Donation to CRI – $500 (McKaughan)
NCRA board currently receives CRI member benefits such as webinar sessions and monthly newsletter. It is a very informative source and helps keep us up-to-date on recycling news.
Motion made by Boone to pay $500 donation to CRI for renewed 15-16 membership and Shapira 2nded. 11-0-0
Booth at Green Festival
Juliana reached out to Green Festival and woman she is working with is very proactive about trying to have us attend. A spot is currently held pending board approval to register, but we don’t know if location will be as good as before. Boone commented that he’s worked the Green Fest for Sierra Club and his opinion is that in both the case of Sierra Club and NCRA there needs to be something to grab people’s attention otherwise difficult to catch interest. Hoffman agreed and mentioned that spin wheel games tend to gather a crowd, especially kids. McKaughan said the NCRA members who staff the booth should have agenda laid out for what we want to accomplish so it is not a waste of time and money. Recycle for Change already has a booth and has offered to share it with NCRA.
Motion made by Boone to purchase booth at $475 in conjunction with Recycle for Change and Robinson 2nded. 11-0-0
Action Item: NCRA needs to pay our half to Recycle for Change since they already purchased the booth. McKaughan, Brooms, and Robinson can attend the Green Festival and potentially others. Gerber to inform Green Festival that we are sharing a booth.
NCRA picking up first round of drinks for SJ mixer
Mixer date set on Wednesday, October 21, starting at 5 p.m. Krueger generated a flyer and Sinnott advertised the mixer in newsletter. Focused on San Jose recycling folks to try and bring them back into the NCRA fold. Krueger says possibly 20 – 25 people will attend. At Market Bar in San Jose.
Motion made by Boone to cover drink expense not to exceed $200 and second by Krueger. 11-0-0 Krueger to look into bar and see if there is a happy hour or a way to limit this.
Actions Requiring Discussion/Policy Decisions:
Update on Mission/Purpose statement (Connolly)
McKaughan suggests perhaps change of using the term “systems” because it sounds more technology field geared. Moore sent out e-mail feedback regarding aligning the mission/purpose statement with the NCRA bylaws. Robinson thinks social/environmental justice should be included.
Action Item: Moore will send some more detailed comments to Connolly for inclusion and to be re-submitted to the Board.
Revisit the finances of ITR (McKaughan)
There is low registration for ITR so far. The cost is $45 per person. It is being held September 28 – 30. A small non-profit wants to send a different staff person each day, but that would not be beneficial because the course days build on themselves. Five to seven people is the cut-off and if number of registrants is not met it will need to be cancelled. ITR will be held at Recology’s Tunnel Rd. facility in San Francisco.
Action Item: McKaughan to send e-blast to Conservation Corps network. New updated text needed from Boone for the course. Robinson will see if USF students are interested.
3) ATM Debit Card for McKaughan & Gerber
Request made for additional debit cards in order to make NCRA purchases because McKaughan and Gerber have to apply very frequently for reimbursement. Krueger asked about card limits. Agreed that limit can be set to $500 in transactions.
Motion made by Boone to allow issuance of two additional debit cards to McKaughan and Gerber for NCRA account & second by Connolly. 11-0-0
Action Item: Robinson to contact Chase about issuing additional cards. Shapira would like to coordinate payment for the NCRA annual picnic with Robinson so he doesn’t have to separately apply for reimbursement.
Report by Committee
Zero Waste Advocacy
Report out from ZWAC meeting on Wed Sept 9
Brooms prepared memo regarding the final status of bills and reported out to group. The state’s legislative session has closed, so all letters now must be sent to Governor to encourage him to sign them. CAW appreciates that NCRA sends letters of support for bills furthering recycling and waste reduction measures.
Boone described a recent Fortune magazine article reporting on issues with curbside recycling including contamination, commodity market recession, etc. The article heavily relied on opinions of Waste Management CEO David Steiner which appeared to support local governments paying more to cover the cost the run curbside recycling programs instead of looking for other solutions.
Krueger wrote a draft letter to Fortune Magazine on behalf of NCRA. The letter was passed out for board to review during the meeting. Recycling markets are in recession right now and the article didn’t talk much about how to solve contamination issues, just emphasized that the WM single-stream method is the best out there. The reported focused on recycling losing money instead of looking at other revenue generating systems such as deposit programs.
Brooms will be leading the ZWAC committee for Boone over the next couple months while Boone is visiting the East Coast.
Motion made by Boone and second by Moore to have Krueger send the short version of Fortune response letter to reporter and long verson to Portia for newsletter with whatever edits approved by McKaughan and others. 11-0-0
Letters to be approved by Board
NCRA submitted letters in support of AB199, 751, and 1052. They also recently did letters in support of AB 876 and AB1063.
Request to adopt ZWIA definition of Zero Waste (Boone)
Ruth Abbe attended a discussed NCRA’s policy on definition of Zero Waste practices. The term “Zero Waste” has become very popular. Companies brand themselves as zero-waste to landfill when they are actually incinerating their materials instead of diverting as beneficial resources.
Motion by Boone to adopt as NCRA policy ZWIA definition of Zero Waste and second by Connolly. 11-0-0
Action Item: Brooms to draft policy letter and write something for NCRA news.
Suggestion for McKaughan to be point person for media
Moore says we need to connect with media sources so that they go to us as the experts instead of writers going to private haulers or other pro-waste entities. McKaughan receives a Google alert when NCRA important topics are in the news. She would prefer to know beforehand instead of after the fact by getting media contacts. No motion required, but board agreed that McKaughan as NCRA president should lead effort in being a liaison with the press.
Action Item: McKaughan to work on resurrecting/creating a media contact list for press releases and study up on how to talk to press – Moore has a resource to share.
San Jose Mixer in October (Krueger/Chiv)
What should be the message to San Jose recycling group? It should be that we’ve noticed a drop-off in South Bay members attending events and RU conference. We would like to encourage and improve participation so our organization can include and represent interests of all regions in the Bay Area.
Picnic September 27 (Connolly)
Shapira and Connolly have conferenced to plan the member appreciation picnic. The location this year is further from BART, but should be a nice spot. Connolly prepared a flyer and distributed it to ZW Youth for promotion. The picnic will be at Lake Temescal in Oakland for third year in a row from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. NCRA is partnering with the ZWYC. Also trying to develop a mentor/mentee program to encourage connections and will have a sign-up sheet available. Juliana received 8 member RSVPs and there are 10 board members confirmed as attending. ZWYC will put $100 toward event expenses. Set-up time is around 10:00 a.m. Come early if you are able to help.
Action Item: Shapira needs to separately itemize the ZWYC expenses from the NCRA expense, because money is kept in same banking acct so expenses will need to be itemized appropriately. Brooms will reach out to people who attend and are not members to help get them signed up. Juliana will bring a canopy in case needed to provide shade.
Next MF organics door-to-door outreach event (EAB grant project) on September 26 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Camp Arroyo Recreation Center in Oakland.
McKaughan and Robinson are participating. It is the same weekend as NCRA picnic and NCRA players’ cast party, so some people will be doing a lot of NCRA activities that weekend!
Potential tour of Safeway (Boone/McKaughan)
McKaughan learned that at Safeway’s Modesto facility there is not much to see. It is essentially a transfer point (separate and palletize materials) for transport to Vernalis site which is a Recology/Grover facility.
Action item: McKaughan will contact Tom Padia of StopWaste because he organized a tour of the Vernalis facility in recent past to try and get contact. Late fall/winter may not be a good time of year to go because if the weather and tour will take place outdoors. May need to schedule in springtime instead.
Cutter recommended potential joint board meeting and tour at AERC facility in Hayward on Thursday, November 19.
Action Item: Cutter to follow-up with AERC contact and update board via e-mail for input.
Getting more LinkedIn followers
Action Item: NCRA has a LinkedIn page, please follow so that we can further promote. An e-mail was sent to board by Gerber July 28 describing how to properly set-up NCRA on your LinkedIn page. If you still need help please contact her.
Pilot mentorship program
Connolly would like to start a pilot mentorship program. Still needs to be developed. Parameters will likely be to just do a monthly check-in so not too great of a time commitment for either party. Connolly would like to add information about the mentorship program to the member letter and the membership registration/renewal on website with a drop-down menu so people can document if they are interested in being a mentor. McKaughan and Robinson volunteered to mentor. Connolly says we also need to find out from mentees what topics they want to know more about and what benefit they would like to see out of it.
Action Item: After picnic NCRA will have a better sense of the mentorship pilot and Connolly will share at next board meeting.
Newsletter Chair, Sinnott was not present. McKaughan mentioned that the newsletter is looking great and the rest of board agreed wholeheartedly. Sinnott is remaining newsletter chair although no longer on NCRA board. Keep the newsletter article ideas/submittals coming!!!
Motion by Cutter and Connolly seconded to adjourn meeting at 8:46 PM.