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BIA Meeting with the City Administration

Greetings Aquarium friends,
This from Jennifer Boardman:

The Executive Committee is invited to a first meeting with the city this Thursday, 2/19. This is an exploratory meeting to begin fleshing out a possible agreement for the future operation of the Belle Isle Aquarium.

If you have any questions you would like the EC to present to the city, please email them to the board.

The EC has a list of items they plan to explore. They include:
- Term of any contract, termination clauses and notice period.
- Type of contract model (when compared to operational agreements between the city and other non-profits)
- Operational support from the city; how long, how much, what does it include in cash and services (H2O, utilities, grass cutting, security)
- ADA compliance
- OSHA compliance
- Sanitary facilities
- HVAC status
- Any pre-existing environmental concerns
- Any pre-existing building concerns ("hot" electrical wires)
- Rules and regulations governing building usage for events/parking
- Insurance and indemnification
- Ability to apply for grants
- Ability to repair/improve the building (roof and windows, etc.)

At our last meeting of the board in January (I will try to get the minutes out soon) we decided to try moving our board meeting from the 4th Tuesday of the month to the 4th Thursday of the month in the hopes of better accommodating members' schedules. Therefore, our next board meeting will be Thursday, February 26th, location to be announced (the DYC is closed in February). We will meet at the DYC in March, on 3/26 at 6:30 p.m. By then we will have an understanding if changing the meeting date is helpful to our members.

Shiver on the River went extremely well. The raffle reverted to a 50/50. A special thanks to Brian for arranging this fundraiser and to all those who volunteered including Diane Stiller, Vance, Brian & Spencer Patrick, Peter, Joe and me. Harriet, Stephen and Deborah Goldstein also were present and took photographs.

Of interest is that the city allowed us to open the aquarium to the public for the first time since April 3, 2005. Island Manager, Keith Flournoy was present and was surprised at the large turn out. Records show some 500 people came through the Conservatory and Aquarium. Many that came through were volunteers at the aquarium clean up on 1/31.

Things are progressing along.

Jennifer Boardman
Boardmember, BelleIsleAquarium.com