Posted by & filed under Outreach.

Next Scheduled Meeting of this Committee:­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­

Date: Thursday June 5, 2014; 8:30 AM

Location: American Can Factory (Tentative)

Agenda: Discuss feedback from CAG on Web content and communications intern idea; make updates to website


Summary from May 9th 2014 Meeting:

Agenda of May 9th 2014 Meeting:

8:30 – 8:45 AM: Member Updates

  • Josh – Website report (content updates, translation features, committee posts, training sessions)
  • Sabine – Materials report – press release, tagline and logo
  • Katia – Invitation to DEP Commissioner Lloyd (Attachment 1)
  • Sabine – Video report
  • Other Updates – TBD


8:45 – 9:05 AM: Scope of Web Content

  • Discuss the content proposal for the CAG website (Attachment 2) and the language for the disclaimer.


9:05 – 9:30 AM: Updating Distribution Lists and Process for Circulating Information beyond the CAG

  • Review the attached distribution list (Attachment 3), identify contacts that need to be updated, and discuss the distribution process for press releases and letters.


9:30- 9:45 AM: Possible Community Outreach Efforts

  • Sabine and John – Discuss status of scheduling outreach meetings at Wykoff Gardens and Miccio Center
  • Sabine, Lizzie, Ariel – Results of outreach efforts to elected officials
  • Josh, John, Sabine – Results of organizational outreach efforts


9:45 – 10:00 AM: Other Business

  • Set Next O&E meeting date
  • Quarterly Community Outreach meeting
  • Locations for full CAG meetings (see Attachment 4)
  • Action items?


Meeting Participants, March 14, 2014

Participants (*indicates Committee member)

Sabine Aronowsky*
Stefan Doering*
Katia Kelly*
Ariel Krasnow*
Eric McClure*
Lizzie Olesker*
John McGettrick*
Maria Pagano*
Terri Thomson (Nat’l Grid)
Pat Tallarico (Facilitator)


Invitation to DEP Commissioner Lloyd:

Katia and Ariel prepared a letter inviting the new DEP Commissioner Emily Lloyd to an upcoming full CAG meeting. Katia sent the letter on May 2nd. It was difficult to get more specific contact information for Commissioner Lloyd, so the group suggested that Katia send an email to Catherine Zinnel in Brad Lander’s office to let her know that the invitation was sent and to ask Council Member Lander to encourage the Commissioner to respond/attend. The Committee will inform the facilitator when the Commissioner responds so that she can be added to the CAG meeting agenda.

Action: Katia will follow up with Catherine Zinnel in Brad Lander’s office to ask them to encourage Commissioner Lloyd to respond to the meeting invitation.

Health Assessment Comments Press Release:

The group discussed the press release related to the CAG’s comments on the recent draft health assessment of the Gowanus Canal by the NY Department of Health. They agreed to make the following minor changes to the press release:

  • Remove the reference to the date (April 30th) of the CAG’s comments.
  • Reference the fact that the full comments are on the CAG website.

The group also discussed the contact on the release. They agreed to follow up with Sean from River Keeper to see if he is interested in being the named contact. If not, the group agreed to use the CAG facilitator as the contact. They also felt it would be helpful to establish a CAG email address that could be accessed by members of the O&E Committee or the facilitator. Eric agreed to talk to Josh about setting this up through the CAG website.

Action: Ariel will update the press release language.

Action: Pat will contact Sean to see if he is interested in serving as the contact. If he is not, or if he does not respond by 5/12, the group will use Doug as the contact.

Action: Eric will distribute the press release on 5/12.

Action: Ariel will post the final press release and the full CAG comments on the CAG website.

Action: Eric will ask Josh to set up a CAG email address that could be accessible by members of the O&E Committee or the facilitator so the group had an email address that was not associated with an individual.

The group also noted that the Press Release associated with the ROD was either missing or was not posted properly to the CAG website.

Action: Ariel will post the ROD press release to the CAG website in the appropriate area so that it can be accessed in the future.


Sabine reported that the quality of the video from the ROD session was not good due to the lighting at the event, so it will not be posted to the CAG website.

The video of Natalie Loney’s TEDx session has been posted to the website.

Web Content:

The group reviewed the draft web content proposal. Although there was some interest in posting information from non-governmental, non-commercial and/or non-profit organizations on the website, the group agreed that it may be too difficult to define appropriate content. The group reiterated that the content of the site should be directly related to the canal and the Superfund cleanup as it states in the proposal. The group agreed that it wanted to avoid any confusion between what was relevant information for the CAG and other information that may represent the interests of a particular group. Participants still supported the idea that the CAG member organizations could have links from the CAG website to their own sites. Also, members are still welcome to distribute information about activities that may be of interest to the CAG at in-person meetings. Member organizations should also be encouraged to link to the CAG website from their own web pages.

The group agreed to make the following changes to the proposal before sharing it with the full CAG at the next CAG meeting:

  • In the first sentence, delete references to posting information by anything other than government agencies. Also, add the phrase “and other government entities” after government agencies.
  • Delete the first paragraph after the bulleted list of government entities.

The group discussed the listing of Bridging Gowanus as “government entity” and agreed that it was convened through government entities, so it should remain on the list. The Committee will get feedback from the full CAG on the list of government entities as well as the rest of the proposal at the next full CAG meeting.

Action: Ariel will update the draft website content proposal and send that to Pat and Doug so that it can be distributed to the CAG before the next meeting.

Action: The Committee will present the proposal to the full CAG at the May meeting. Pat will coordinate with Doug to add this as an agenda item.

Action: Eric will have a couple of examples of government entity information that would be posted to the website based on the proposal so that CAG members can better understand the type of content being proposed when the topic is discussed at the next full CAG meeting.

The group also discussed the idea of having an intern or part-time volunteer to assist with the update and maintenance of the CAG website. This individual would probably need to attend O&E Committee meetings and be knowledgeable about WordPress (the content platform for the site). Stefan volunteered to assist in overseeing the work of the individual (with technical assistance from Josh). The group agreed that it would need to develop a description of the individual’s responsibilities and find a place for the person to work. The group also discussed the fact that some CAG member organizations may have interns that could dedicate time to this, if they had the necessary skills.

Action: Sabine will draft a position description.

Action: Sabine will reach out to Reg Flowers at Good Shepherd to see if they already have an intern that could do the work.

Action: The Committee will present this idea at the next full CAG meeting to see if members have ideas about how this position could be filled or how the support could be provided.

Action: Maria will talk to someone at Buzzfeed to see if they have ideas about this type of position.

Distribution Lists:

The group discussed the need to have better distribution lists for elected officials, city and state government offices, and press outlets. Participants were asked to send their existing lists to Pat for compilation.

Action: Committee members should send their list of contacts – elected officials, government offices, and press outlets – to Pat. Pat will compile the lists and share the consolidated list with the Committee for review and confirmation.

The group agreed that the Admin Committee should meet to review the application of a potential new member and to review the list of member organizations to ensure that it is current.

The group also observed that there is currently not a mechanism on the CAG website for individuals to sign up to get information about the CAG.

Action: Eric will ask Josh about adding a feature to the CAG website that will allow individuals to express their interest in receiving information from the CAG.

Quarterly Public Meetings:

The group discussed an earlier proposal to have quarterly informational meetings to share information about the CAG with the community and recruit new members. The group agreed that a quarterly event may be overly ambitious and that something in the spring and the fall may be more reasonable. This could be done as part of a full CAG meeting as well.

Action: Share the idea of having an informational meeting with the full CAG at the next meeting to gage interest.

Meeting Venues:

The group discussed potential meeting venues for full CAG meetings. Wyckoff Gardens is one location that could accommodate the full group. The facilitation team should move forward with identifying locations for future meetings.

Action: Sabine will send the form for reserving Wyckoff Gardens to Doug and Pat.

Action: Facilitation team will identify locations for remaining scheduled meetings.

Next Scheduled Meeting of this Committee: Participants observed that morning meetings seem to be the best attended and most productive. They proposed to have the next meeting on June 5th. Ariel will investigate the availability of space at the American Can Factory. Eric will bring a projector to the meeting to facilitate discussion of changes to the website.


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