May 20, 2002

I. PRESENT: Elisabeth Beaird (The LAB), Ruach Graffis (UTW, 203), David McGuire (Mission Agenda, 204), Patrick McFadden (October 22 Coalition), Betty Traynor (RTA Organizer, 314)


- Ruach asked us to write a letter by Thursday on a transportation issue for the UTW.

III. TREASURER'S REPORT: $290.84 to be transferred to Fiscal Agent: S.F. Foundation Community Initiative Funds.


A. FINANCE: RTA received the $12,000 grant from The S.F. Foundation for our continued work to preserve the Redstone. We will be receiving the contract soon and grant to begin in June 2002 through May 2003. See Priorities under New Business.
B. FUNDRAISING: Discussed having a fundraiser in early July to celebrate the installation of the new chair lift making an accessible Redstone Building. Elisabeth said she would contact Ron Jones and Ruach will contact the Paratransit Coordinating Council to let them know. Laura Brun will help with line-up. Ruach suggested asking Wesley Whitfield to perform-she and/or Betty will try to contact her. Elisabeth had a concern that The LAB does not have a piano to accompany Ms. Whitfield. (NOTE: This benefit may be postponed to August or September.
C. STRUCTURE: David, Ruach and Betty still working on Bylaws. See report under Old Business.
E. SAFETY COMMITTEE: Next Neighborhood Watch meeting is Monday, June 3, 7:00 p.m. in Room 305.


- BYLAWS: Our attorney Amy Toro gave us a complete draft of the bylaws-to be reviewed by the committee and presented to the RTA soon. The committee will discuss the process to present the final draft of bylaws to RTA for approval at their next meeting. Contact Betty for time and place.


- PRIORITIES FOR NEXT YEAR: We brainstormed about our priorities for the next year in light of new funding from the S.F. Foundation:

1) Continue work on landmark status for the Redstone.
2) Continue work on 501 ©(3) for the RTA
3) Become more visible, identifiable, "out there" at public events, etc. Do more PR about the Redstone and RTA. Wear T-shirts (need to order more), banner presence at events such as Gay Pride Day, Castro St. Fair. Table with other tenant groups in building who may have a presence at one of the street fairs, etc. during the summer/fall.
4) Update Brochure and make more copies to distribute.
5) Website for RTA - To contact Colleen Nagle and
6) Do annual fundraiser (see above).
7) Others - To be continued at future meetings and in between: Tenants feel free to e-mail ideaa.

NEXT MEETING: TUESDAY, JUNE 18, 4:00 PM - Suite 4.

Contact: Betty Traynor, RTA Organizer, Room 314, 558-8133, or

April 16, 2002

I. PRESENT: Elisabeth Beaird (The LAB), Ruach Graffis (UTW, 203), Gary Gregerson (Bands, B-7), David McGuire (Mission Agenda, 204), Betty Traynor (RTA Organizer, 314)


- CHAIR LIFT: Elisabeth Beaird of The LAB said the installation of chair lift for the disabled is completed! It now needs to be inspected by the City and State which may take another month. She is in touch with Chuck Sperry, the muralist who painted the mural affected by the chair lift. He will be coming by to make suggestions as to how best to replace the mural panels removed.
- RTA T-SHIRTS: 1- Small, 5 - X-Lge, 2- XXL, 2- 3XL, and 1- 4XL are left. We are out of Large and Medium sizes but will be ordering more. Please send in your order to Betty, $10 per shirt. . T-shirts are red with black RTA design. Thanks again to Jim Winters for doing the design.
- RTA BANNER: We now have an RTA banner, based on the T-shirt design, thanks to Ruach Graffis. Ruach spent many late night hours getting it done. Thank you Ruach! We would like to hang it in the building. Any suggestions?
- TREE TRIMMERS AND AWNING WORKERS NEEDED: We would like to get the two trees trimmed in front of the building entrances near Capp and the awning replaced or structure removed asap. Any RTA members with these skills or who know people with these skills, please contact Betty. As David McGuire stated, the exterior of the building is how we relate to the community. Roger has told us that the owner refuses to have this work done so the RTA may do it ourselves. Betty will contact him about partial payment for the work.

III. TREASURER'S REPORT: $261.84 as of 3-31-02 (minus complimentary T-Shirts)


A. FUNDRAISING: Discussed having a fundraiser in early July to celebrate the installation of the new chair lift making an accessible Redstone Building and possible other "facelifts" to the front of the building. We discussed tying the fundraiser in with LaborFest again. Will look into this. Anyone interested in working on the fundraiser, please contact Betty.
B. STRUCTURE: Working on Bylaws. See report under Old Business.
C. HISTORIC LANDMARK COMMITTEE: Work in progress. Ruach has heard back from some of her labor contacts who gave her positive feed-back on the history of the building she is writing for the report we must submit.
D. SAFETY COMMITTEE: Next Neighborhood Watch meeting is Monday, May 6, 7:00 p.m. in Room 305.

IV. REPORT FROM RTA ORGANIZER: Betty reported that Kirsten Boyd, Assemblywoman Carole Migden's aide is back working in her office. Betty contacted her about a meeting to discuss our situation and the proposal we submitted last October. It was also suggested we talk with Sup. Mark Leno who will most likely be the next Assemblyperson after the November election. We have ties to him in the building through Paula Tejeda and Mission Agenda and he definitely supports preserving the building. Betty is awaiting word from Laurie Pantell of the MOCD regarding getting an appraisal done of the building.


- BYLAWS: David McGuire, Ruach Graffis and Betty Traynor met with attorney Amy Toro on April 11 to continue work on the bylaws. Draft 7, based on that meeting, was presented at today's meeting. In addition to the Bylaws, the committee suggested having an RTA "manual" or "guidelines" that will specify certain procedures not included in the bylaws. Elisabeth expressed concern about the number of board members as specified in the current draft at "not less than 11 nor more than 15." She felt this was too narrowly defined, especially since as an organization evolves, it may want to alter the number of Board members. She also felt that a minimum of 11 may be too many to begin with. She suggested wording such as "not less than 7" with no maximum number specified in the Bylaws. Gary said his concern would be if the maximum number on the Board, say 15, were lowered. Also, the definition of quorum was discussed and it was suggested that a minimum number, eg. 5, be stated rather than as it is now "a majority plus one of the total number of directors then in office shall constitute a quorum for decisions on the Board." People were concerned that if we had vacancies on the board and thus fewer than 7, the majority plus one could be a very small number of people making decisions for the RTA. Finally, under Term of Office, as the bylaws read now it states that "Board members may serve unlimited terms." Elisabeth said this is a "red flag"-need to have a specificed term of office. Bylaws committee members present will take these concerns into account for the next draft and discussion with Amy Toro. At their next meeting they will also discuss the process for RTA approval of "final" draft. Any RTA member is invited to participate. Please contact Betty if you would like to see the current draft.

NEXT MEETING: TUESDAY, MAY 21, 4:00 PM - Suite 4.

Contact: Betty Traynor, RTA Organizer, Room 314, 558-8133, or

March 19, 2002

I. PRESENT: Don Eichelberger (Abalone Alliance, 309), Ruach Graffis (UTW, 203), Gary Gregerson (Bands,
B-7), Betty Traynor (RTA Organizer, 314), Benji Whalen (Artist, RTA Treasurer)

- Cesar Chavez March: Sunday, March 24, Noon, Begins at foot of Market. RTA to participate - Join with United Taxi Workers, white van, driven by Ruach. Not sure of location of van yet. Will e-mail info. RTA T-shirts will be ready by then (see below).
- S.F. Cab Drivers Need Help: Ruach of the United Taxi Workers (UTW) announced the need to contact the Board of Supervisors regarding reducing the gate that cab drivers must pay to the cab company. Because of the severe drop in taxi business since 9/11, Sup. Tom Ammiano has proposed a $25-a-shift reduction in the taxi gate cap for the time being. To go to Sups for vote. Contact UTW (864-TAXI) for more info and Sups' e-mail and phone numbers.
- Chair Lift: Betty reported that the structure to support the chair lift and the electrical work have been completed and we are now waiting on the lift to be installed. Ruach suggested people to invite to the celebration of the completion of the chair lift-she will get the names to Elisabeth and Laura of The LAB.

III. TREASURER'S REPORT: There is approximately $385 in the RTA account as of this date. Six more tenants have paid dues. If you haven't-please do asap. Contact Betty for information if needed.


D. FUNDRAISING: Will call a meeting soon as RTA needs to plan a fundraiser. Anyone wishing to be on the committee, please contact Betty.
E. STRUCTURE: Working on Bylaws. See report under Old Business.
F. FINANCE COMMITTEE: Betty will speak with Mayor's office regarding the possibility of getting names of licensed appraisers to appraise the bldg. pursuant to agreement with owner.
E. SAFETY COMMITTEE: Next Neighborhood Watch meeting is Monday, April 1, 7:00 p.m. in Room 305. Capt. Corrales will be present. Everyone welcome to come and give him your feed-back.


- RTA T-Shirts And Banner: Tenant Jim Winters did a great design (Thanks Jim!) and red union-made t-shirts with black design ordered in all sizes from small to 4xL. They are available at cost ($10). Ruach volunteered to work on an RTA banner based on the t-shirt design. Any help is appreciated.
- Rebuilding Together/Xmas In April: As was announced earlier, the Rebuilding Together program notified us that they do not have sufficient sponsors this year to do our project. We discussed at this meeting finding a corporate sponsor ourselves. MicroMedia company was suggested. Any other suggestions welcome-send to Betty. We also discussed the possibility of RTA members doing some of the tasks ourselves, for example, removal of hazardous waste and stored junk-any tenant have a pick-up truck (stipend provided for work)? Also suggested we contact the Building Trades Council for member with truck to donate time to do this? Tree trimming (one of our tenants may have a contact for this work), awning replacement. Benji said that some tenants think the owner should be charged if there are any expenses to doing these tasks. Need to pressure David Luchessi more on getting some of this done. Betty will look into possibility of hazardous waste pick-up by City. Will talk to Roger about this also.
- Bylaws: Some members of the Structure Committee (Ruach G., David McGuire, Betty Traynor) met with our attorney, Amy Toro, on March 6 and went over the draft bylaws. She made some good recommendations and said she would look into a few things (including wording for qualifications of Board members) and provide us with the necessary language for all sections of the bylaws that we do not think we need special wording. A fifth version of the bylaws was presented at this meeting and a few suggestions made-Officers of the corporation be RTA members; conduct of board meetings by consensus process and/or Roberts' Rules of Order or an alternate method. A final draft should be ready by the end of March. Any RTA member is invited to participate. Please contact Betty if you would like to see the current draft.


Contact: Betty Traynor, RTA Organizer, Room 314, 558-8133, or

February 26, 2002

I. PRESENT: Don Eichelberger (Abalone Alliance, 309), Ruach Graffis (UTW, 203), David McGuire (SRO Project, 205), Betty Traynor (RTA Organizer, 314)

II. FACILITATOR: Betty Traynor


- Phone-banking with the S.F. Labor Council: Ruach announced that the Labor Council is phone-banking from their offices for the March 5 primary election and urged us to participate.
- Neighborhood Safety Meeting: The 2900 Block of 16th Street Neighborhood Watch meeting is Monday, March 4 at 7:00 p.m. at the Redstone, Room 305. All RTA members are invited to attend.

IV. TREASURER'S REPORT: There is $155 in the RTA account as of this date. Betty delivered RTA dues reminders on Feb. 22.


A. FUNDRAISING: Need to revitalize the fundraising committee as there may be possibilities for events in the future such as a celebration of the completion of the chair lift for disabled (in the Spring) and participation in LaborFest again in July. Don also brought up the possibility of outside groups renting theater spaces in the building for events, conferences as a way to bring in money for the RTA and the theater group (split 50:50?).

B. STRUCTURE: Next Meeting: Wednesday, March 6, 4:00 pm in Suite 205 to continue working on the RTA Bylaws. Attorney Amy Toro may be in attendance. See under Old Business for Bylaws update.

C. FINANCE COMMITTEE: S.F. Foundation rep Katharine Gale visited the building and met with Betty T. and Jose Amaya on Feb. 20 to discuss our proposal (for $12,000 for operating expenses). She asked a number of questions and seemed very positive about the building and our proposal. One thing she pointed out was that the S.F. Foundation definitely looks at diversity on an organization's board, including representing the group's clients. We told her that we had those qualifications for board members in our draft bylaws. She will be calling a few tenants and people in the community about us. The final decision will be made in May by the Foundation's trustees.

D. HISTORIC LANDMARK COMMITTEE: Ruach Graffis is working on the history of the building and has sent a draft of her write-up to several Bay Area labor historians. She is awaiting their responses. Betty is working on other aspects of the report we must submit to the Landmark Board. Hope to have a draft ready soon.

E. SAFETY COMMITTEE: We all agreed that the problems on our block seemed to have improved over the last month with "fewer gangsters in front" of the building. We are still hosting the block Neighborhood Watch (see above) and will continue to monitor the situation.


- BYLAWS: The Structure Committee (Ruach G., David McGuire, Jose Amaya, Betty Traynor) met twice since our last general meeting and worked on a draft of the bylaws which was presented at today's meeting. We reviewed them and made a few more changes. They will be meeting next Wednesday (see above) to continue the process. Any RTA member is invited to participate. Please contact Betty if you would like to see the current draft (still a ways from completion). Hopefully, the final draft will be ready before our next general meeting and sent out to all to review.
- REBUILDING TOGETHER/XMAS IN APRIL: Betty gave a copy of the Renovation Agreement that must be signed to attorney Gerald Pearlman at MAFCU and he found nothing to be concerned about in its language. Roger H. is also looking it over and we should have it signed soon. Mark you calendars for the last week-end in April, 27th-28th, to help with this project to improve the Redstone for all tenants and visitors. More details later. Don E. asked if we were considering doing any work on energy efficient lighting with Rebuilding Together. He has a contact with the City's energy program that now is doing outreach to building owners/managers to make such improvements. Betty said would discuss with Roger asap.
- APPRAISAL OF REDSTONE: We discussed the issue that was brought up at the last meeting regarding getting a formal appraisal of the building done. David pointed out that for us to get loans or grants, the purchase price must be at the assessed value, not higher, and we should let the owner know this. Ruach and others said we should pursue making a purchase offer based on the assessed value once it is done. Betty said she would look into grants to do the appraisal and also wants to find a real estate agent to work with us, particularly in negotiations with the owner. Ruach suggested an agent she knows. David said that in talking with the owner he should know that the neighborhood is undergoing a new zoning process based on the People's Plan that includes affordable space for community-serving businesses, non-profits and the arts.


Contact: Betty Traynor, RTA Organizer, Room 314, 558-8133, or

January 31, 2002

I. PRESENT: Jose Amaya, (YCUP, 305), Elisabeth Beaird (The LAB), Don Eichelberger (Abalone Alliance, 309), Ruach Graffis (UTW, 203), Gary Gregerson (Band, B-7), David McGuire (SRO Project, 205), Betty Traynor (RTA Organizer, 314), Benji Whalen (315)

II. FACILITATOR: Betty Traynor

- Neighborhood Watch Meeting: Monday, February 4, 7 - 8 pm @ YCUP office, Room 305. Capt. Corrales of Mission Station to be present. Also, will discuss phone tree at meeting. David McGuire reported that a police officer from Mission Station picked up one of Mission Agenda's clients, a homeless man, on 17th Street and beat him.
- Community Planning Workshop for the Mission - Tuesday, Feb. 12, 6:00 to 8:30 pm @ ODC Theater 17th & Shotwell. This is an important meeting sponsored by the S. F. Planning Department and needs lots of community input.
- Cesar Chavez Parade - Sunday, March 24, from foot of Market/Harry Bridges Plaza (Don't Call it Justin Herman*). Ruach will be driving cab #1106 in the parade and offered a seat(s) for part of march to RTA members. Call her at 864-8294. We discussed later in the meeting having an RTA contingent in the parade (see below).
- People's Earth Day in the Bayview/Hunters Point - April 20. Contact: Don Eichelberger
- Chair Lift: Elisabeth Beaird reported that the work on the chair lift is proceeding and should be completed by the end of February. She suggested having an event/celebration for the completion sometime in the spring. The LAB is already talking to some people, such as Ron Jones of the Berkeley Disability Center, about plans for an event.

IV. TREASURER'S REPORT: There is $365 in the RTA account as of this date. The RTA has taken in $695 in dues so far with 15 tenants paying. Betty will send out a "second notice" in February. Benji was authorized to pay $250 to the RTA Organizer for December. We have a new Free Voicemail through Onebox. We have discontinued the Pac Bell account. Our public/voicemail number is 430-2160, x 2201. You can still reach the RTA/RTA organizer through 558-8133.

V. UPDATES: Since we haven't met for awhile, instead of committee reports and New/Old Business, we decided to have updates plus discussion of the future plans of the RTA resulting from Update information.

- Rebuilding Together/Christmas in April: The RTA applied to this program which does renovations/tasks at the homes and buildings of low income persons and organizations that serve low income people on the last week-end in April. We just received the letter on 1/31/02 that we have been accepted for the April 2002 program. Other individual agencies within the Redstone may have also been approved. The RTA members agreed that as long as building manager Roger Herried is involved in the project and meets with the organizers, we would go forward with the plans. In our application we submitted a wish list of tasks to do at the Redstone. Roger, David McGuire and Betty will go over the list with them and prioritize it. Must also sign a Renovation Agreement-to run by our attorney(s).

- Landmark Status for the Redstone: Ruach, Roger and Betty are working on the report that must be filed. Ruach has several people working with her on the labor history portion which is the major part of the report, including Daniel Bacon, Labor Archives librarians, Bay Area Labor Historical Society, and others. Also, a Context Statement written for the Landmark Preservation Board entitled "The 1934 San Francisco Waterfront & General Strikes" recommends as a first priority the completion of landmark nominations for the Labor Temple as well as two other important sites related to the General Strike. This Statement will be included in our application. Betty and Roger are working on other aspects of the report including alterations made to the building over time and technical stuff. We are really moving on this now.

- Non-Profit/Tax-exempt Status for RTA: Betty reported that we have a new pro bono attorney who will be working with us on our 501(c)(3) status, Amy Toro. Our previous attorney, Ravi Batista, moved away. Amy will be meeting with us soon to go over the application. The 2002 Structure Committee, Jose Amaya, Ruach Graffis, David McGuire, and Betty Traynor will meet Thursday, Feb. 7, 4 pm to go over the RTA Bylaws and work on a draft to present to the RTA asap. Any RTA members are welcome to attend this meeting and help us with this important task.

- Safety and other Building Issues:
Safety - RTA members are represented at the 2900 16th St. block Neighborhood Watch meetings and attended the North Mission Public Meeting on Health and Safety in January and expressed their concerns. Roger H. in particular spoke out at the meeting with concerns and suggestions for improvement. The new police captain at Mission Station, Cpt. Corrales, said he would make drug dealing in the 16th Street area a primary focus. So watch for improvements so we can give him feed-back.
Other: The issue of additional janitorial service and security at night for the building were discussed at a previous meeting and today. We are concerned that asking the owner for this would result in an immediate rent increase for everyone. In the area of janitorial, we discussed cleaning and buffing the hallway and stairway floors as a priority. We had various ideas: putting this on the Rebuilding Together/Xmas in April task list, getting ARC Project people to help (need to pay at least minimum wage), Project 20 (those working off parking tickets) to help, RTA members volunteer time to do it one week-end. It would cost about $100 for rental of the buffer and supplies for 24 hours. It was suggested as one way to use our RTA dues money. David McGuire and Roger have experience in using the machine-a very big piece of equipment so need to be trained in its use. The job would need to be done bimonthly or quarterly. Any volunteers from the RTA membership?

- Potential Non-Profit Development Partners:
1) Artspace Projects, Inc.: Betty reported that we received a letter from Tom Nordyde, VP of Development for Artspace Projects who said that the $7 million asking price from building owner David Luchessi is too high and indicates that he is "not highly motivated to sell at this time." Artspace agrees with the price given in the Feasibility Study by Nancy Conover of $3.7 million and stated in a separate report on the Redstone that any asking price not within a small percentage of that figure makes it inadvisable to proceed on the project to purchase. They state in the letter that "the level of financial subsidy required to purchase the building would take considerable time to accumulate… and the building could be sold before adequate funds are raised." They conclude that the owner's actions since purchasing the building suggest he is not in a hurry to sell the building for a reduced price.
2) Mission Housing Development Corp.: Betty met with Carlos Romero, Executive Director of MHDC, on Jan. 30 to seek his advice on our current situation in light of the high purchase price. Carlos agreed it was an inflated price in today's market, and even at a lower asking price of about $5 million would not be an affordable building for our tenants. We would need either higher rents than those suggested in the feasibility study to qualify for a loan or more funding through a capital campaign from foundations, etc. that would be very difficult to obtain. Carlos made a few suggestions: Get a formal appraisal of the building (the Feasibility Study was not an appraisal) so we would have figures to talk with owner. Problems with this: Unless Luchessi agrees to this and cooperates, appraiser may not have all the information to do full appraisal, eg., net operating income, gross receipts; appraisal is expensive, could cost up to $8,000 and thus we would need to get a grant to have it done; owner may not accept the appraised value and still want the $7 million unless we have an agreement ahead of time with him that he will accept it as the purchase price. To negotiate with owner, should get a commercial real estate agent. Also, with today's market, the Redstone tenants may be safe for another economic cycle of 4 to 8 years. Carlos said he would talk with others at Mission Housing about our situation and get back to us.


All present at the meeting had opinions regarding the information above and our direction. We agreed that the owner's asking price for the building is beyond our reach and it really does not look like he is planning to sell the building any time soon. With the low wages he pays and minimal upkeep, he is making some profit and is not necessarily motivated to sell. Elisabeth and others pointed out that the RTA is doing a lot to improve the building on our own-including the murals and chair lift which The LAB with support from other arts groups in the building received funding to do, Rebuilding Together project in April, janitorial work (mainly floors), landmark status. Gary pointed out that we need long-term leases and need to talk to Luchessi about this in light of all the property improvements we are doing to make the building a better environment for all the tenants and visitors. Jose said we need to develop a long-term (three to four years) fund raising strategy now that it looks like we have some time. Continue talks with MHDC and once our non-profit Board of Directors is chosen by the RTA, they can work on a plan. Benji said now that we have additional goals beyond the sole goal of purchase of the building, we can make the RTA stronger, develop a commonality/group morale. David McGuire agreed with this, stating it is important we pursue the landmark status and develop a real building morale, "espirit d' corps," with the RTA taking charge of the building. Elisabeth also pointed out the importance of attending the 2/12 planning meeting (see under announcements) to speak for permanent land use controls, especially the condition that if a non-profit is evicted from a building, only another non-profit can replace it. Betty said that since our funding for the RTA organizer/coordinator has ended, she will continue on in a voluntary role (depending on her work situation) to help accomplish our new goals.


- Obtain landmark status for Redstone Building
- Write bylaws and obtain tax-exempt status for RTA
- Facilitate building improvements through help from other organizations and our own efforts
- Plan at least one fundraiser per year for the RTA
- Keep profile of the RTA in community (suggested we walk together in the Cesar Chavez march, carrying a banner and wearing RTA T-shirts-to be made-suggestions?)
- Continue to work with the Labor community-marching in solidarity, participate in LaborFest again, make
individual union contacts.
- Continue to respond to the needs of the neighborhood
- Establish a long-range strategy for fundraising to eventually purchase building.

NEXT MEETING: TUESDAY, July 23, 5:00 PM-Location to be announced (either SUITE 4 on the first floor or 305 on the 3rd Floor)

Contact: Betty Traynor, RTA Organizer, Room 314, 558-8133, or

Contact Betty Traynor for meeting minutes prior to January 2001.

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