March 5, 2015 Meeting

Meeting Agenda – March 5, 2015   3:30-5:00

Location: CFO

  1. Welcome – Greg Burris & Gail Smart
  2. Approval of 2-5-15 Meeting Minutes
  3. Update on Poverty Simulations
  4. Community Survey Status
  5. Focus Groups – A Deeper Dive into the Top 5-7 Challenges
  6. HUD Designation
  7. Review of Draft Report
    • Facts Needs?
    • Root Causes of Poverty vs. Symptoms/Effects
    • A Contract?
  8. Adjourn


Greg Burris, Springfield City Manager

Gail Smart, City Center Christian Outreach

Nate Bibens, The Network

Scott Brady, CPO Board of Directors

Ashley French, Junior League of Springfield

Rob Fulp, Springfield First Community Bank

Brendan Griesemer, City of Springfield

John Horton, Rotary Clubs of Springfield

Sandy Howard, Springfield Chamber of Commerce

David Jayne, Central Assembly of God

Christian Mechlin, SPS

Morey Mechlin, Care to Learn

Marty Moore, SPS

Rob Nelson, Marlin Company

John Oke-Thomas, Minorities in Business

Francine Pratt, United Way Board of Directors

Linda Ramey-Greiwe, Springfield News-Leader

Carl Rosenkranz, OACAC

Cora Scott, City of Springfield

Larry Spilker, Buckhorn, Inc.

Dr. Mike Stout, MSU

Mark Struckhoff, Council of Churches

Maura Taylor, Health Commission

Jaimie Trussell, Convoy of Hope


Janet Dankert, CPO

Trent Sims, CPO


Welcome & Approval of February 5, 2015 Minutes

Greg Burris began the meeting with a review of the minutes from the last meeting. Rob Fulp moved to approve the minutes and Brendan Griesemer seconded the motion. The minutes were approved by consensus.


Update on Poverty Simulations

Carl Rosenkranz from OACAC reviewed the status of the poverty simulations. So far we are on track to complete the goal of 25. Here are the upcoming simulations:

March 17th 10am-noon location to be determined with Springfield Chamber of Commerce

March 26th 8-10am at First Baptist Church with Downtown Rotary Club

April 20th 9:30am-11:30am at North Point Church with North Point Church (possibly)

April 23rd 10am-noon location to be determined with Center City Christian Outreach

July 14th 10:45am-12:45pm location to be determined with Greene County COAD

Community Survey Status

Janet Dankert and Mark Struckhoff have been leading the efforts to get surveys out to low-income individuals in the community. The Council of Churches collected over 250 surveys and Francine Pratt collected 50. This gives us over 500 surveys that rank the top needs of those in poverty. Dr. Stout’s students have volunteered to compile the results.

The purpose of these surveys is to help us get feedback from the under resourced. Greg Burris, Gail Smart, Janet Dankert, and Brooke Ash had a focus group with some low-income individuals when the commission started to talk about recruiting individuals to serve on the commission but there were issues with transportation, time of day, and a general level of comfort in attendance. Greg Burris would like to see the group do some more focus groups with the under resourced. This could involve having a few members of the commission serving at each focus group.

New HUD Designation

Brendan Griesemer gave an update on the new HUD designation of “severe fiscal distress”. HUD classifies communities based on their per capita income and the percentage of households living below the poverty guideline. Of all of the metropolitan areas in Missouri, Springfield is the only city that had a per capita income and a percentage of individuals in poverty that would meet the ranking of “severe fiscal distress”.

Currently, the city gets about $670,000 from HUD in HOME funds. It was 1.1 million before the recession. Because of this designation, the City no longer has to match the funds by 25%, however, the City already satisfies that match through in-kind services and contributions to programs like the Springfield Affordable Housing Center.

Review of Draft IP Commission Report and Discussion on Next Steps

Greg Burris led the group through a review of a draft report from the Impacting Poverty Commission. This report gave an introduction to the group, an overview of the process, membership, proposed strategies, the current status and trends associated with local poverty, the cost of doing nothing, and issues and recommendation. Some things listed under the process included; inventorying the local services, educating the poverty commission, identifying the root causes and symptoms of poverty, research around best practices and setting a vision along with measurable goals and strategies. The group discussed whether or not we should inventory the local services. This process could be rather lengthy but Morey Mechlin felt like it would be worth it.

Mark Struckhoff stated that the collaborative would be a good sounding board for this report before sending it out to the community. The collaborative is looking to this report to provide guidance for future movement.

Greg Burris asked the group whether we should research our local conditions or look at best practices in other communities. The group asked Dr. Stout for insight and he said that he thought it would be important to understand our local conditions so we pair best practices in other communities to our local needs. Dr. Stout also recommended highlighting what is working in the community. He mentioned the Jobs for Life program and the mentoring efforts of the local faith based community.

Trent Sims recommended including things related to the built environment and how it impacts poverty. There are alternative housing models and different shared systems that allow people to live at a lower cost than the standardized single family house with two cars per family.

Central Assembly is starting their “Empowered for Life” program in April that will work with individuals using the Getting Ahead curriculum from Ruby Payne and pair them with mentors upon graduation. It is based off of the best practice program called Circles. Information from this class could be used to see what recommendations low-income individuals have for the community.

The final report may need to be written in multiple formats so that it can communicate its message to a variety of audiences.

Organizing the “Northwest Listen”

The city took maps on fires, crime, and school mobility rates and found a tremendous overlap in the northwest part of Springfield. Greg Burris would like to organize a “Northwest Listen” where the commission could meet with the different neighborhoods and learn about what their needs are. He would like to host at least 2 forums. He would also like to do some before and after surveys to see if perceptions change over an 18 month period of intervention.

Pilot Project Discussion

The group discussed doing pilot projects. Maura Taylor mentioned how the community did the Echo project with the schools and it had great results but fizzled out because of a lack of funds to maintain. She would like us to compile an inventory of successful pilot programs that have had to go away because of a lack of funding before we recreate the wheel.

Dr. Stout recommended creating a local social innovation fund to maintain the creation, sustainment, and scaling of successful pilot interventions for minimizing poverty.

Larry recommended looking at processes versus programs because once you have a process you can maintain it. Programs may or may not get to the root causes of the issue like a process would.