“It’s a magic place,” said FHA President Michael Labate upon opening the annual membership meeting on February 29. He was greeted by a round of applause when he added, “We’re fortunate to live here.” Indeed, community was the theme of the meeting.
Membership chairs Jill Sherman and Lisa McNelley announced plans to survey all residents to determine what they want from the FHA.
Treasurer Teddie Hathaway reported that the FHA ended 2019 with a net gain of $4,200, thanks largely to the Open Homes Tour. We have about $50,000 cash on hand. A 2019 profit and loss statement appears below.
Emergency Services Chair Flo Hoylman conducted a spot quiz to see how many people understand how their holding tanks and grinder pumps work. Then she introduced the world premiere of an instructional video on grinder pumps, holding tanks and how they move waste to shore. The video starred Pete Hudson of Main Dock, and was edited by his son Turner. It will soon appear on the FHA website. Check back for an official announcement.
Michael introduced Kate Sears, who is stepping down after 9 years as our County Supervisor. Kate began her remarks by praising the floating homes community as a model of people caring about what happens right here. She spoke about the research she has spearheaded, Marin BayWAVE, and how to adapt to sea level rise, including fixing the pathways. The award-winning Game of Floods, created in Marin, will be used in the spring to help people think about how to deal with sea level rise going forward. Kate then spoke about flood warnings and the intersection between flooding and transportation. Drawdown Marin, which started as a book by our own Paul Hawken, is an ongoing project working to find climate change solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It’s exploring renewable energy, transportation, buildings and infrastructure, carbon sequestration, local food and food waste, and Climate Resilient Communities. One innovative example is biochar, which looks like charcoal but stores carbon and can endure in the soil for thousands of years. On March 28 volunteers will plant 30 trees in San Rafael and they will embed biochar in the ground. She noted that the County budget process for the next two years is beginning. Goals are to invest in infrastructure, improve disaster preparedness, preserve and create affordable housing, and address climate change and racial equity. The County is looking at its own buildings and how they can be improved, including backup power sources. Marin Clean Energy (MCE), our renewable energy service, is now in four counties. It is working to provide all its customers with battery storage options, beginning with the most critical sites. MCE requires new solar energy partners to plant pollinator-friendly ground cover at the project site. She invited everyone to visit her website for more specifics on these urgent initiatives. At the close of her remarks, Supervisor Sears was presented with a bouquet of flowers by president Labate.
Video star Pete Hudson was named Member of the Year for all his contributions to Emergency Services, the Open Homes Tour, FHA Day in the Park, and more.
Michele Affronte and Mari Steeno conducted a spirited drawing for an array of door prizes, donated by local businesses and neighbors. They included:
- Red Emergency Backpack (FHA Emergency Services Committee)
- Sail on the Freda (Spaulding Marine Center)
- Three month membership (Anytime Fitness)
- Children’s Book (Jen Gennari)
- Novel A Soldier’s Wind (in memory of Stuart Riddell)
- Glass Pendant (Teddie Hathaway)
- Four signed copies of books by Elle Luna
- Original drawing (Elle Luna)
- Indigo textile (Elle Luna)
- $300 (Rachelle Dorris)
- Gift certificates were donated by Saylor’s Restaurant and Bar, Mike’s Bikes, Avatar, BBQ ‘n Curry
- Magnum of Petite Syrah and tasting for two (Madrigal Winery)
- Tickets to show at Marrakech Magic Theatre (Jay Alexander)
- Paintings (Victoria Colella)
- Gift certificates to the Buckeye Roadhouse, Davey Jones’ Locker and Driver’s Market (Samantha Fazio, Hawser Marine Insurance Services)
- Bottle of sustainable wine and photograph of Chilean wine district (Mike and Barbara Rycersky)
- $250 gift card for Southwest Airlines (Bay Area Escrow)
- $350 gift card to Mountain Home Inn (Michele Affronte)
- Gift Certificate to Launderland (Ken Watsey, Kappas Marina)
These folks deserve our thanks and continued support.
After the meeting, a record turnout gathered in the Bay Model Gallery for a gourmet buffet dinner and a chance to mingle with neighbors and friends, both old and new.