Category Archives: Leadership Council

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes – April 11, 2017

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes
April 11, 2017

 In attendance: Jim Ayres, United Way of Hampshire County, Mary Jane Bacon, Office of Senator Rosenberg, Jane Banks, Center for Human Development, Tim Brennan, Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, Kathryn Buckley-Brawner, Catholic Charities, Dave Christopolis, Three County CoC, Steve Connor, Hampshire County Veterans Services, Dawn DiStefano, Square One, Lisa Goldsmith, DIAL/SELF, Brad Gordon, Berkshire Regional Housing Authority, Steve Huntley, Valley Opportunity Council, Peg Keller, City of Northampton, Jennifer Kinsman, United Way of Pioneer Valley, Jay Levy, Eliot CHS-Homeless Services, Gerry McCafferty, City of Springfield, Michelle Michaeliann, BHN, Andrew Morehouse, Food Bank of Western MA, Rebecca Muller, Grantworks, Kristin Peterson, YWCA of Western MA, Christina Royal, Holyoke Community College, Jim Seney, VAMC, Janna Tetreault, Community Action

 Minutes of March 1, 2017 meeting:
Kathryn Buckley-Brawner moved to adopt; Steve Huntley
Unanimously in favor

Budget update: Current cash balance for the Network (at United Way of Pioneer Valley) is $4,045 for the remainder of fiscal year, includes receipts and pledges (one outstanding pledges). Partner contributions totaling $5,584 came in during the last couple of months. UWPV will forego its 10% admin fee for the remainder of the year (thanks expressed). Additionally, the Hampden County CoC and Community Action have each separately contracted with Pamela to provide facilitation for the Network committee meetings (dependent on geography of meetings and/or with youth meeting on rotating basis). This allows for the bulk of the UWPV funds to be allocated to the Network’s legislative advocacy work, along with general networking opportunities.

Legislative Update: Pamela reported that the Network has met with a dozen legislators over the last several weeks – Senator Rosenberg, Senator Lesser, Rep. Kulik, Rep. Farley-Bouvier, Rep. Gonzalez, Rep. Kocot, Rep. Mark, Rep. Tosado, Rep. Scibak, Rep. Vega, Rep. Velis, and Rep. Williams – to share Network priorities. At each meeting, different Network partners have attended based on the legislator’s district. Additional meetings are scheduled with Senator Hinds, Senator Humason and Senator Welch. The meetings have been very positive.

Prioritizing the Network’s Budget Priorities: At our last meeting with Senator Rosenberg, Rep. Kulik, Rep. Kocot and Rep. Scibak, the group received a direct ask for the Network’s top priorities among our list of priorities.

The Leadership Council discussion focused on answering the questions:

  1. What priorities will most greatly serve our region in particular?
  2. Where are there no or few other champions on the issue (i.e., our delegation is most needed)?

The group also reviewed the House Ways and Means (HWM) budget in relation to these questions to determine its priorities.

Motion to approve these top priorities list below: Peg Keller. Seconded: Steve Huntley
In favor: 21. Opposed: 1 (Steve Connor expressed preference for MRVP to be among the Network’s top priorities)

Motion to approve these priorities in the order listed below: Kathryn Buckley-Brawner. Seconded: Tim Brennan.
In favor: 20. Abstentions: Jim Ayres, Jay Sacchetti

The Leadership Council priorities are:

  1. Youth program funding ($0 in HWM)
  2. Consortium funding ($0 in HWM)
  3. Network earmark ($0 in HWM)
  4. Secure Jobs Initiative ($500K in HWM budget, down from $800K in Gov.’s budget)
  5. Tenancy Preservation Program ($500K in HWM, level funded; ask is $1m)
  6. RAFT language expansion to define family to include individuals (language not included in Governor or HWM budget)

The LC agreed that these priorities will be qualified by the explicit notation of the importance all of its initial priorities.

Network earmark amount (Motion to accept: Steve Huntley; Seconded: Tim Brennan; All in favor):

The Leadership Council decided after discussion to request the earmark in the amount of $125,000 but make clear to Rep. Kocot that if budget constraints required a reduction, the Network could also manage to continue with an amount between $50-$75,000.

Note: Pamela also raised earlier in the meeting the suggestion posed by Bill Miller (who was unable to attend the meeting) that the earmark be drawn from the family homelessness line-item since it is much larger than the individual services line-item and any earmark will proportionally impact the services less. While the Council heard this suggestion, it was not discussed at greater length. Pamela will inquire of Rep. Kocot for his feedback.

Application for Davis Foundation funding:
Motion for the Network to apply for Davis Foundation funding for FY18: Steve Huntley
Seconded: Gerry McCafferty
All in favor

Next meeting date:
July 27, 10 am- 12 noon
Greenfield, location TBD

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes – 10/26/16

Leadership Council Meeting
October 26, 2016

In attendance: Father Stan Aksamit, Our Lady of Peace Church, Paul Bailey, Springfield Partners for Community Action, Dave Christopolis, Three County Coc/Hilltown CDC, Ken Demers, BerkshireWorks, Jenna Day, Franklin County Regional Housing and Redevelopment Authority, Rose Evans, DHCD, Sue Fortin, DMH, Lisa Goldsmith, DIAL/SELF, Mike Hagmaier, Soldier On, Jen Hohn, City of North Adams, Nat Karns, Berkshire Community Development Corporation, Peg Keller, City of Northampton, Jennifer Kinsman, United Way of Pioneer Valley, Charlie Knight, Rainville/former consumer, Joanne LaCour, DTA, Gerry McCafferty, City of Springfield/Hampden County CoC, Andrew Morehouse, Food Bank of Western MA, George Ryan, Hanpden County Regional Employment Board, Jay Sacchetti, ServiceNet, Pamela Schwartz, Network, Jim Seney, VAMC,   Sarah Tanner, Friends of the Homeless, Lauren Voyer, HAPHousing, Jennifer Wuest, Behavioral Health Network

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes of 8/3/16:
Motion to approve: Charlie Knight
Seconded: Nat Karns
Approval: Unanimous

Collective Impact Conference Report: Pamela attended a 3 day conference in San Antonio, TX from October 17-20 sponsored by the Collective Impact Forum (http://collectiveimpactforum.org). Click here for the Powerpoint summary of lessons learned. Pamela shared that she was inspired by the framework of Collective Impact and invited the Network to look deeper into what it would mean for the Network to explore this approach. All agreed that that possibility, including the potential allocation of training dollars, would be further discussed at the Steering Committee.

Network to End Homelessness Progress Report:  Click here for the Powerpoint summary data update. Gerry and Dave provided an update on the progress with each population – families, chronically homeless, youth and veterans. Additional comments included:

  • Soldier On has moved many veterans into new veteran housing in Northampton and Chicopee. The Point in Time Count in the 3 County region will go down significantly this year (currently 144 Soldier On beds are occupied out of 266).
  • The advance of using By Name Lists has closed off gaps, preventing more people from slipping through the cracks.
  • Deputy Undersecretary Rose Evans offered TA on the challenges related to releases of information; Gerry also suggested bringing this state level support to the next statewide CoC meeting
  • Gerry provided an update on the Hampden County CoC’s application to HUD for a Youth Homelessness Demonstration Project. This is a highly competitive process – 10 awards nationwide; Boston and Worcester are also applying – that would provide between $1m and $15m for 3 years (then subject to renewal) to support innovative programs to address youth homelessness. The Network Youth Committee is supporting this process (with the 3 County CoC, which did not have the capacity to apply for this particular grant). Decisions on pilot projects for the initial planning period (6 months of TA from HUD) will occur in early 2017.

Continue reading

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes – 4/28/16

Leadership Council Meeting
April 26, 2016

In attendance: Mary Jane Bacon, Office of Senate Preisdent Rosenberg, Kathryn Buckley-Brawner, Catholic Charities, Dave Christopolis, Hilltown CDC, Ben Cluff, DPH, Steve Como, Soldier On, Patricia Crosby, Franklin Regional Employment Board, Sylvia DeHaas-Philips, United Way of Pioneer Valley, Ken Demers, BerkshireWorks, Dawn DiStefano, Square One, Doreen Fadus, Mercy Medical Center, Lisa Goldsmith, DIAL/SELF, Brad Gordon, Berkshire Regional Housing Authority, Clare Higgins, Community Action, Steve Huntley, Valley Opportunity Council, Peg Keller, City of Northampton, Charlie Knight, Rainville, Joanne LaCour, DTA, Faith Lafayette, DPH FOR Families, Gerry McCafferty, City of Springfield, Peter Miller, City of Westfield, Dave Modzelewski, Network, Andrew Morehouse Food Bank of Western MA, Fran Pheeney, Franklin Regional Housing and Redevelopment Authority, Megan Rhodes, Franklin Regional Council of Governments, George Ryan, Hampden County Regional Employment Board, Jay Sacchetti, ServiceNet, Pamela Schwartz, Network, Jim Seney, Veterans Administration, Linn Torto, MA ICHH

Review of Jan. 20, 2016 Meeting Minutes: (click here)

Moved to approve: Charlie Knight
Seconded: Jane Banks
All in favor: unanimous
abstention: Joanne LaCour

Budget Update: (click here)
Sylvia deHaas-Phillips reviewed the budget. Sylvia noted that revenue beyond state funding is at $26,000, i.e., state funding is critical to the Network’s continuity.

Review of Network FY17 budget priorities

Pamela reviewed the Network budget priorities in relation to the House adoption of the State budget just last night.

Secure Jobs: The House funded Secure Jobs at $500K, one quarter of the $2 million needed to keep the program fully functional statewide. The Governor funded the program at $750K, so even the “larger” number is less than half of what is needed. What does this mean, especially when the program has demonstrated such success and directly correlates to preventing returns to homelessness. The group agreed we need to approach our legislators and Administration officials to better understand their thinking.   How does the Fireman Foundation’s commitment interface with state government limits response. We will explore these questions with Linn Torto.

Mary Jane Bacon suggested that we pay attention to the lobbying representation on the program; that we must ensure the broad representation (beyond career centers) in our presence with legislators.   Pamela will follow-up with Mary Jane to gain any additional insight from their senate budget analyst.

We also agreed that it would be useful to look at the “home” for Secure Jobs and support a conversation about the best agency fit for the program, e.g., DTA where other employment programs exist. We will raise this with Linn Torto as well for additional feedback.

Increase individual shelter unit rate to $30/night : did not pass in House or Governor’s budget. Will continue advocacy in Senate.

Expand HomeBASE eligibility to include families in domestic violence or substance abuse programs: passed in House and Governor’s budget.

Expand RAFT to include individuals: did not pass in House or Governor’s budget.

Increase TPP to $975,000: did not pass in House.

Network earmark: passed in the House.

Pamela noted the tremendous support of Rep. Peter Kocot (lead sponsor) and Rep. Stephen Kulik in the passage of the Network earmark amendment. She also noted the great support of our Western MA delegation in general as supporters of Network priorities. We expressed our immense gratitude for our great delegation!

Pamela will compile a chart that lays out each priority and its status in each part of the budget process and send that to the Leadership Council.

Steering Committee/3 County CoC meeting and by-laws update:
Andrew informed the group that the Steering Committee and representatives of the Three County CoC are meeting on May 6 to discuss by-law revisions to address better representation of the 3 County CoC and overall process of decision making. All are welcome (9 am at Northampton Senior Center on May 6). The group will bring proposed by-law revisions to the next Leadership Council meeting in June.

Meeting with Senate President Rosenberg on May 13
Pamela reported that Senator Rosenberg has agreed to meet with members of the Network to have a general dialogue about both the Senate Housing Crisis report and Western MA needs. Each CoC has designated 5 people to attend this meeting (we agreed to keep the meeting small in order to maximize the potential for meaningful conversation). The group will report back at its June meeting. We expressed appreciation for Senator Rosenberg’s commitment to the Network and its goals.

Continue reading

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes – 1/20/16

Leadership Council Meeting
January 20, 2016

In Attendance: Jane Banks, Center for Human Development, Dave Christopolis, Three County CoC/Hilltown CDC, Patricia Crosby, Franklin Hampshire Regional Employment Board, Sylvia deHaas-Philips, United Way of Pioneer Valley, Ken Demers, BerkshireWorks, Dawn DiStefano, Square One, Doreen Fadus, Mercy Medical Center Health Care for the Homeless, David Gadaire, CareerPoint, Lisa Goldsmith, DIAL/SELF, Brad Gordon, Berkshire County Regional Housing Authority, Clare Higgins, Community Action, Mike Hagmaier, Soldier On, Janice Humason, Friends of the Homeless, Peg Keller, City of Northampton, Charlie Knight, SCARF/Rainville, Ann Lentini, Domus Incorporated, Gerry McCafferty, City of Springfield, Bill Miller, Friends of the Homeless, Peter Miller, City of Westfield, Dave Modzelewski, Network REACH, Fran Pheeny, Franklin County Housing Redevelopment Authority, Jerry Ray, Mental Health Association, George Ryan, Hampden County Regional Employment Board, Jay Sacchetti, ServiceNet, Pamela Schwartz, Network, Jim Seney, VA Medical Center, Stephen Seplman, YWCA, Eric Shupin, CHAPA, Lynne Wallace, HAPHousing,

Leadership Council Meeting Minutes of 9/17/15:
Motion to approve: Charlie Knight
Seconded: Dave Modzelewski
Discussion: Pamela will correct a couple of attendee omission and spelling errors.
All in favor: unanimous
Opposed: none
Abstentions: none

Network Budget Update:
Sylvia deHaas-Philips distributed an updated budget (click here), which has not changed much since the last meeting. Everything is on track.

Network Survey:
Click here for compilation of Network results. Pamela summarized findings with group. Comments included:

Can we find out how many respondents were from each sub-region? Gerry suggested that this is possible with an upgrade of the Survey Monkey tool. Pamela will investigate.

We discussed the break down between good/excellent and moderate to excellent, all agreeing that there is a meaningful difference between “moderate” and “good/excellent.” With the current survey compilation, you can extract “moderate” by subtracting the total of good/excellent from the total “moderate-excellent” number.

EOHHS RFR update:
Pamela provided an update on MA Executive Office of Health and Human Services’ RFR to create a consortium to respond to people facing acute housing crisis. It was released on 12/29, bidders’ conference was 1/15 and proposals are due 2/2. A total of $900,000 is available statewide, which will fund 3-5 grants. Applicants must create a coordinated entry systems – “no wrong door” – and the grant will include flexible funds for prevention, diversion and rapid rehousing. The funds are intended to intervene further “upstream” in the prevention effort. Up to 25% of funds may pay for coordination of the system. Applicants may also apply for funding for unaccompanied homeless youth (ages 18-24); a total of $2 million is available statewide with up to 5 grants, including rural, urban and suburban. Qualified applicants include the Network, CoC’s, regional housing authorities, CAP agencies.

Continue reading