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The Gowanus Canal Community Advisory Group’s Outreach Committee met on Thursday, November 10, at 6:30 p.m., at the offices of the Fifth Avenue Committee, at 621 Degraw Street. The agenda included choosing future meeting dates/times, brainstorming the future of the Outreach Committee, and a discussion of key initiatives for outreach to the broader community, including holding a community orientation/re-orientation at the February 2017 CAG meeting.

Committee Members Present

Stefan Doering
Rafael Gomez de Luna
Eric McClure

Eric will create and circulate a Doodle poll for future best meeting dates and times.

Eric will review Outreach Committee attendance. Most listed members of the committee have failed to meet the required 50% attendance commitment. Will submit attendance info to the Admin Committee.

Is there a way to track whether CAG member are pushing out information to their constituents and the community at large? Every organizational CAG member needs to be distributing notices and materials. How do we hold them to account?

Case study for creating CAG-issued press releases: the EPA began debris removal from the 4th Street Basin on October 24, but that effort wasn’t announced until after the CAG’s September general meeting, and it occurred the day before the CAG’s October meeting. Therefore, there was no way to issue a statement on behalf of the CAG at or in conjunction with the start of debris removal. Which begs the question: how do we empower the CAG to handle such situations? Can Outreach issue a statement on behalf of the CAG in time-sensitive situations? Is it possible to craft a press statement using information already agreed upon by the CAG? Eric will draft a sample press statement for the debris removal event for discussion at the next Outreach Committee meeting.

Admin should review the Facilitation Committee process. Charter amendment outlines a number of processes that really haven’t been followed.

CAG to hold an orientation/re-orientation at the February 2017 general meeting. What form should that orientation take? Contact Natalie about potential format and content for the meeting. Outreach Committee to take a lead role in spreading word to the community. Enough lead time to work out a plan and timetable.

Stefan: we should work backwards from February 28. Create goals for the meeting and outline the steps to get there. If we want, for example, 50 non-CAG members to show up on the 28th of February, what do we need to do to make that happen? If we need a press release in January, what do we need to do in December to get there? And so on. Set up a template or kit for CAG members; email templates, sample tweets, Facebook posts, etc. Can we set up an RSVP plug-in on the website?

At the December Outreach meeting, we’ll outline the communication plan for outreach about the February meeting. What do we say in the emails? How many do we send? When do we send them? How do we hold CAG members to account for doing their parts?

Next Outreach Committee meeting: Friday, December 9, 8:30 a.m.

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