September 2, 2015 represents the end of the 2014-2015 KWA program year. This past year the board and I have worked on governance, making sure our programs/activities/accounting are in compliance with federal and state guidelines. We reviewed funding for concerts, the Fair, membership, plus other events/programs ensuring our financial security and strengthening programs. As part of our fiduciary responsibility, the board approved a “Holdings Policy.” A subcommittee is currently preparing to interview several finance organizations and will submit a recommendation to both the Finance Committee and the full board. More information will be forthcoming.

One of the goals of the Strategic Plan was to investigate moving to a larger office. We signed a two-year lease at 122 Madison. The new space is working well for meetings and for Fair activities. We retained ownership of 1032 S. Alamo and are in the process of finding a tenant.

Daniel Perez’s article in the July 17 San Antonio Express-News, “Southtown Successes Mean Parking Failures,” accurately highlights one of our major neighborhood issues. As I have indicated in previous posts to the Newsletter, the King William-Lavaca neighborhood joint Parking and Transportation Committee chaired by Rose Kanusky is working on gathering information to propose potential solutions to our parking-traffic issues. To offer any hope of solving any of the parking and traffic problems, it is essential that we work with the respective COSA departments. Toward that end, we have now met twice with the City Center Development and Operations staff to work jointly to find some relief to the congestion.

On July 17, we presented the scope of work prepared by Rose’s committee to CCDO office staff. Jim Mery, CCDO’s representative, and Terry Bellamy of TCI will review our scope of work and submit a request for proposal to hire a consultant to obtain the various kinds of information needed to determine solutions. The scope of work includes the following topics with each outlining a series of tasks and stating deliverables.

The 2015 King William Fair was a tremendous success!  Despite the early morning thunderstorm, the parade departed on time, the sky cleared, and the temperature rose.  When I walked out at 6:00 a.m., there was much concern in the Fair zone with standing water, collapsed booths and uncertain weather.  The first Fair staff member I saw out at that time was Fair Coordinator Carol Jackson in her husband’s golf rain suit directing sponsors and vendors at King William Park.  At 8:30 a.m., Sue Duffy was the drill sergeant on Eagleland getting everyone lined up and all of the floats and folks in position to start the parade.  It started on time with the Brackenridge High School band leading the way, and was royally greeted by the many parade watchers throughout the route.  

I had no specific agenda when I became president, preferring instead to become familiar with issues that were current and ongoing.  Soon, however, it became apparent to me that the most glaring issues were the new development surrounding King William and expansion of commercial establishments, the consequences of which were parking congestion, safety and enforcement problems, and First Friday.  Over a dozen eating establishments are in King William and Lavaca, but few of these have adequate parking options.  Thus, many patrons must share parking spaces on the public streets with our residents, creating the congestion.  Other important issues that came to my attention were finding a new building for the KWA, repairing and renting the old KWA building, and formulating a plan for our financial future.  Committees were formed to get information and address these pressing issues, as described in previous Newsletters.

There has been much concern lately regarding the reported criminal activity in King William and Lavaca. In response to these reports, City Councilman Roberto Treviño, assisted by Anna Alicia Romero, organized a Safety Summit for our neighborhoods, held at the KWA office on March 28. Interim Police Chief Anthony Treviño and some of his officers were in attendance, along with Councilman Treviño, who presided. This forum offered a good opportunity for residents to voice their concerns directly to them.