Members present: Helen Howell, Paula Carvalho, Simha Reddy, Gordon McHenry, Adrienne Quinn, John Chelminiak, Nate Caminos, Dr. Damien Pattenaude, Juanita Spotted Elk, Harold Odom, Professor Sarah Rankin, and Rev. Dr. Carey Anderson
Intro and Welcome
Attendance taken and all present. Rev. Dr. Carey Anderson was introduced - last Board member to join the group. Team being surveyed to determine best meeting time.
Public Comment (1 of 2)
Public comment opened for 10 minutes but since no one there they will open again later in the meeting.
Discussion followed on ideas to get to know each other to better work as a group. They want to work as a cohesive team, but many folks don’t know each other/have not worked together before. Some ideas included:
. Asking about how each person was doing - general well being
. Asking about the origin of their name
. Having small break out groups for 10 - 15 mins to have more intimate discussions
. Determining the values of the Board
. Having a retreat (virtual)
. Sharing a story from your life that taught you about leading, or managing, etc.
. Talking constantly about how we bring racial lens to the body
. Agreeing on principles and outcomes and norms for engaging with each other
. Sharing a meal if possible
Public Comment (2 of 2)
Then opened for public comment again. One person on the line. Thanked the Board for the hard work again but asked them to work as quickly as possible. There are unsheltered homeless out there every day. Half of them live in vehicles. These people must be remembered. Hoping that the lived experience coalition can be a strong voice for these people.
KCRHA Start-Up Decisions
Materials were sent out last week covering six key decisions the Board had to make to enable the KCRHA to operate, the CEO to get hired and the CEO to immediately hire a few key people to get going. A PowerPoint was shared on these key items which included:
2. Payroll Services
3. Accounting Services
4. Health Care Benefits
5. Retirement System Participation
6. Social Security.
Key comments were that the package should be no less than what city and county offer now; and that there must be a way to carefully track where the money goes. Also the Board wanted to know how long they would be locked in to any decision before they could make a change if it was so desired. Voting on these six items will take place at the next meeting.
Officer Nomination and Voting
They then talked about the structure of the Board - whether they should have a Chair and Vice Chair; a Chair and Co-chair; Secretary, Treasurer or some other mix of leadership. The ILA gives them flexibility in how it is set up. It was agreed that inclusion of lived experience people is important.
Spotted Elk nominated Odom for a co-chair position. It was decided to determine the structure before they start to fill the positions. Also, they don’t really know each other yet, so it is hard to know strengths of the group and who might be better suited for each position. It was agreed to let the staff come back with options for the structure. It was also agreed to have the staff set up some type of digital retreat.
Members present: Executive Dow Constantine, Mayor Jenny Durkan, Kirk McClain, Zaneta Reid, Councilmember Regan Dunn, Councilmember Joe McDermott, Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez, Councilmember Andrew Lewis, Mayor Angela Birney, and Councilmember Ed Prince
Members absent: Mayor Nancy Backus
Members who sent a proxy: Johnathan Hemphill
Welcome, Roll Call, and Agenda Overview
Ed Prince ran the meeting.
Update on Racial Equity and Anti-Oppression Training
McClain spoke on the equity training that this committee and the Implementation Board would have. Details to be worked out but that it was in progress.
Approval of Minutes
The July 16 minutes were approved unanimously.
Then the meeting was opened for public comment for 10 minutes. Fifteen different people spoke, all with similar comments - the committee needs to keep power at the homelessness level; solutions are found closest to the problems so need to move power toward these folks; response needs to be centered around the customer voice, need to have policies that lift up rather than dehumanize, trust and listen to the lived experience people on the committee, vote yes for amendments C&D in today’s meeting, bring honor and grace to lived experience group, lived experience people should not be marginalized. In addition to all the comments being in support of keeping the lived experience people in leadership roles that are really given a voice - and not just ticking a box; one comment was that there was no representation for veterans on the Implementation Board.
All were given an opportunity to speak. Public comment did not end until all had spoken.
Consideration of Implementation Board Appointee
Next it was stated that twelve people were seated to the Implementation Board at the July 18 meeting and they had one more seat to fill today. Michael Ramos was put forth. It was unanimously approved.
Staff Update on CEO Hiring Process & Timeline
Jason Johnson introduced Christine from Hawkins Co who was retained for the CEO search. Christine spoke and said she would be reaching out to many for their input. The Hawkins Co did a similar job search for the Los Angeles Housing Authority recently and they have worked with King County and the City of Seattle in the past. Johnson reminded all that a fair amount of work has already been completed on what they are looking for - a job description has been drafted, so Christine would hot be starting from scratch. The goal is to hire a CEO in November.
Johnson then discussed a change to the initial staffing plan. The CEO is given 60 days to present a staffing plan, but he will need a few new staff immediately to do this work. This authority for the CEO to do some initial hires before the 60 days was voted on and approved - 3 abstained, 8 in favor.
Tess Colby (staff at Mayor Durkan’s office) presented an overview of the Bylaws for approval. The bylaws discuss how the Committee will operate. The group who drafted the bylaws met four times. Most of the bylaws were agreed on, however, there were 5 amendments to be discussed at the meeting today as there was not consensus.
Amendment A asked for alternates for Constantine and Durkan in the case of an emergency. This was voted 8 ayes, 3 nays.
Amendment B asked for a higher voting threshold (8 vs the current threshold of 2/3rds of members present) only for specific changes requested to budget, goals, policies or plans. This was voted 7 ayes, 4 nays.
Amendment C spoke to the term limits and alternates allowed for lived experience persons. This was voted 10 ayes, 1 nay.
Amendment D requires the CEO provide meeting materials seven days in advance of meetings for proper review and preparation. This was voted 11 ayes.
Amendment E asked for a four member co-chair committee. There were 3 abstentions, 4 ayes, 4 nays. The motion failed, and it was decided to bring this up at a future meeting.
It was stated that the next meeting would be September 17, and then the meeting was adjourned.
Members present: Helen Howell, Paula Carvalho, Simha Reddy, Gordon McHenry, Adrienne Quinn, John Chelminiak, Nate Caminos, Dr. Damien Pattenaude, Juanita Spotted Elk, Harold Odom, and Professor Sarah Rankin
Members absent: Rev. Dr. Carey Anderson
Other presenters: Leo Flor
Meeting highlights: I watched a recording on September 7, but I believe the time was late afternoon, 1 1/2 hours long.
The purpose of the meeting today was to introduce the Board members to each other and to get background on the Board’s mandate. In summary their mandate is to oversee policy, funding, and services for people experiencing homelessness county wide. Their focus is to better coordinate services and funding across the entire county and reduce the disproportionate number of people experiencing homelessness based on racial/ethnic disparities. Ultimately, their goal is to eliminate homelessness.
Background: As background, previous and current efforts to solve the homelessness issue in King County have been 1. fragmented and 2. inequitable. To rectify this situation and in doing so better solve the homelessness issue, during the past year a unified regional governance approach has been initiated with the goal of being pro-equity and person-centered. This new approach has resulted in the establishment of the King County Regional Homelessness Authority (KCRHA), formed by an Interlocal Agreement in December 2019.
The KCRHA will focus on unifying and coordinating the homeless response system for all of King County. This will include outreach, diversion, shelter, much of the region’s prevention efforts, and services for rapid re-housing, transitional housing and permanent supportive housing.
First a Governing Committee was established and included: Jonathan Hemphill, Kirk McClain, and Zane Reid all representing leaders with lived experience; Executive Dow Constantine King County; Councilmembers Reagan Dunn and Joe McDermott, both representing the King County Council; Mayor Jenny Durkan, City of Seattle; Councilmembers Lorena Gonzalez and Andrew Lewis, both representing the Seattle City Council; and Mayor Nancy Backus, City of Auburn, Mayor Angela Birney, City of Redmond, and Council member Ed Prince, City of Renton, all representing Sound Cities Association.
This Governing Committee then established a KCRHA Implementation Board. This Implementation Board met for the first time at this meeting. The Board consists of 13 members representing people with lived experience of homelessness as well as experts from fiscal oversight, physical and behavioral health, affordable housing, equity, business, homelessness services, labor unions/workforce, youth services, and child welfare services.
Implementation Board member biographies: The meeting was moderated by Jeannie Macnab, the acting project manager for KCRHA. After a brief overview she invited each member to introduce themselves in no particular order. I am, however, grouping the Board members so that the reader can understand the area they represent:
Seattle Mayor Appointees:
Helen Howell - over 30 years of public, policy and advocacy and leadership experience, including roles at the federal, state and local levels.
Rev. Dr. Carey Anderson - (not present) Senior Minister of FAME, Seattle
Seattle City Council Appointees:
Paula Carvalho - Raikes Foundation program officer on the youth homelessness strategy, Director of Youth Programs at the Mockingbird Society. Lived experience in foster care and homelessness.
Simha Reddy - Primary care physician working in the field of homeless health since 2012.
King County Executive Appointees:
Gordon McHenry - President and CEO of the United Way, King County.
Adrienne Quinn - Teaches at the Univ of Washington Evans School of Public Policy and Governance. Was Director of King County Department of Community and Human Services. Has family members dealing with homelessness.
King Count Council Appointees:
John Chelminiak - recently retired Bellevue Mayor and City Council member, involved in the initial legislation setting up the KCRHA.
Michael Ramos - (still to be approved, listening in at the meeting) Exec Director of the Church Council of Greater Seattle.
Sound Cities Association Appointees:
Nate Caminos - Director of Government Affairs for the Port of Seattle. Strong connection to the business community. Experienced food insecurity and poverty as a child and has a close family member who experiences homelessness. Also is a foster parent.
Dr. Damien Pattenaude - Superintendent of the Renton School District.
Lived Experience Leaders Appointees:
Juanita Spotted Elk - member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe. Mother of five children who has survived domestic violence and homelessness. Serves on the Executive Committee of the Lived Experience Coalition.
Harold Odom - experienced homelessness for over a decade. He currently lives in the Tiny Home Villages in Georgetown and is a huge advocate for those experiencing homelessness.
Professor Sara Rankin - Founder and director of the Homeless Rights Advocacy Project (HRAP) at Seattle Univ. HRAP engages students, staff, faculty and allies in research and advocacy to advance the civil, constitutional and human rights of people experiencing homelessness.
Public comment: After all introductions were completed there was available ten minutes for public comment. No public comments were made in the first few minutes so they moved on to the next part of the agenda.
Main presentation: Leo Flor, Director of King County Department of Community and Human Services gave a powerpoint presentation providing a bit of background on why the KCRHA was formed, what the role of the Authority Board is and some immediate next steps.
He led with the main goal - Unified Governance with Equity, Efficiency, and Accountability.
Management now is fragmented. There is inequality in services and funding across the County.
The Authority Board has no elected officials and no current service providers.
One of the Board members asked about getting more background info from filed reports, consultant work, etc., and Flor said he would provide links to different reports to the Board after the meeting.
The Authority Board is expected to meet a minimum of 6 times per year but were expected to meet more frequently in the next few months to organize for 2021. A note would go out after the meeting to determine a definitive Board meeting schedule that worked best for all.
The next meeting would focus on how they would work with the Governing Committee and other groups. Also, there will be discussion on how the funding responsibility would be transferred to the Board, establishing operating logistics, etc. The control of contracts would have to be transitioned over with the goal of new RFPs being issued by the Authority Board starting the second half of 2021. The Board Authority will also have to focus now on recruiting a CEO in the next few months.
After Flor’s presentation and some brief discussion of next steps, the meeting was adjourned. No public comment opportunity was provided at the end of the meeting.