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Milwaukee Makerspace Board of Directors Meeting - April 21, 2016

Held at the Milwaukee Makerspace craft lab



Lance Lamont, Dan Jonke, Carl Stevens, Keith McMillan, Adrian Volden, Harvey Matyas


Marc Ownley, Steffanie, Scott Swanson, Bill


Meeting was called to order by at 7:02 by Lance.

“ask more questions and form fewer opinions”

Review and approval of the Minutes of the previous meeting

The meeting minutes from the previous meeting were approved.

Reports of Boards and Standing Committees

Treasurers Report

  • Dan presented the treasurers report
    • We added 26 members last month
    • Building down payment continues to make the report look bad, but we are in the black month over month.
    • Area donations are still commingled in the overall balance
    • Dan will sit down with champions if their balance gets about $1000
    • Payment to John was because he paid twice by accident
    • Building contributions out of members $5 discretionary spending is down to $363
    • Keith mentioned that he encouraged the leather area champion to set up a donation box
    • The board voted unanimously to approve $160 expenditure for Space Improvement Day for March
    • Dan felt we could raise the cap on food for Space Improvement Day to $200 - the board voted unanimously to approve this proposal

New Equipment/Donations

  • Previous Status DL will look into setting up an inventory system for space equipment.
    • DL wants to go low-ish tech, and print out barcodes and maintain the inventory, and will work on demoing the solution in the next month or two
    • Several people suggested we use Google Sheets
    • May want help with programming-ish things, Keith and Dan can help
  • Tom Gr wants to donate 6 or so rolling chairs - approved, this is an ongoing process, there are additional new chairs by the loading dock, and a couple of more folding tables
  • Tom acquired a fume extractor for the welding area - needs power by the welding tables - Board voted to approve this equipment

Building Maintenance/Issues

  • Roof Flashing
    • Rik removed loose flashing during Space Improvement Day - need to caulk nail holes - add to Space Improvement Day list
  • Dumpster Pad needs repair
    • Board discussed proposal to move the dumpster to the south end of the building - felt that the trash company could not get to it there
    • We discussed moving the handicap space and determined it was probably best to leave it near the loading dock
    • This will be added to Space Improvement Day to determine a course of action

Reports of Special (Select) Committees

New tri-fold for the 'space

  • Previous Status Draft created by Carl, and some feedback on minor changes will be incorporated. Tom to get a quote from a friend of the space who works for a printing company.
  • Inter-meeting updates
    • Carl revised
    • Quantity agreed to (2,500), quote received
    • Proof received
  • Order has been placed and tri-folds printed
  • Tom Gr will pick up and deliver
  • Lance mentioned that the Appleton Makerspace visitors inquired about setting up a Makerspace Leadership group

Space Projects Update

4x8 CNC Plasma Cutter

  • Steve Pilon now champion for this project
  • Current target for completion is May
  • Carl spoke with Steve, and Steve believes there is significant redesign that needs to happen
  • Steve needs help from a machinist, Carl will follow up with him
  • Mark Ownley (present at the meeting) also volunteered to help


  • Previous status Lance has sent Joe a request to get the previous owner's contact information. DL was to create a letter to send to the previous owner.
  • Inter-meeting update: Previous owner contacted the board with a proposal for additional donations.
  • Gerry, donator, wants the pendant back, and maybe one of the boards from the cabinet
  • Jake is using the Kuka until August for his project
  • The footprint of the robot needs to be shrunk by the end of the month
  • The current space is on a parking permit, Jake will need to start renting the space
  • Adrian will coordinate with Joe on talking with Gerry about the Kuka and the donation
  • DL will follow up with Jake

Large Format Printer

  • Previous status The board voted unanimously to remove the large format printer
  • Inter-meeting updates: large format printer and supplies moved to impound lot after coordination with area champions - awaiting lottery

Vacuum Former

  • Previous status Lance suggested investing some small amount of funds to buy materials so we can figure out the interest in the former, and was going to contact Midland about materials. Area to be reorganized at next space improvement day.
  • Inter-meeting updates: area cleared during Space Improvement Day
  • Lance was unable to stop by Midland Plastic
  • Adrian will send out an email asking for interest on the vacuum former

Unfinished Business

Sequestering area fund donations

  • Dan reports he knows how much should be sequestered

Building Insurance

  • Previous Status Dan to follow up and make sure the building insurance was correctly transitioned when ownership of the building changed
  • Dan has heard from the insurance agent and needs one more contact to make sure

Paypal Tax Exempt Status

  • Previous Status Dan has emailed Paypal again about our rates, and will report out if they respond.
  • Inter-meeting Updates: Tax exempt status secured at PayPal

Property tax exemption

  • Previous Status Tom Gr. has what he needs will send in the paperwork.
  • Tom will provide this to the board by the end of the month

Utility rates

  • Previous Status Lance will follow up with WE Energies on our electric rates
  • Lance has the form to fill out for WE Energies

Wild Apricot Transition

  • Previous Status Keith to look into importing Wild Apricot data into QuickBooks.
  • Inter-meeting update: Keith has imported WA into a test QuickBooks company and it seems to work fine. Needs follow-up with Dan to determine next steps

New camera system

  • Previous Status We need to run cables, which are already here. This will be a space improvement day project. Lance says we did not put a camera outside the North wall looking at the Otjen/Lenox door.
  • Keith met with Chris H and we don't need to run as many new cables as we thought
  • This will be added to Space Improvement Day - Keith to spearhead

Engine Hoist

  • Previous status The board voted unanimously to ask Have Blue to remove it from the building. Have Blue contacted and asked to remove the hoist.
  • Inter-meeting update: hoist has been removed

Tool Damage & not coming forward - Warning?

  • Previous status Carl will draft an email asking the member for an explanation of the damage
  • Inter-meeting Updates: this issue has been resolved to the area champions satisfaction

Donations via QRCodes - Keith

  • Previous status Keith to add a direct URL to the fliers.
  • Inter-meeting Updates: Keith has offered this to all the area champions for their areas
  • Keith will set up all areas in Wild Apricot

Introduce discounted 1 year membership ($450 upfront), to reduce treasurer load.

  • Previous status The board voted unanimously to approve a discounted “primary membership” if members pay 1 year in advance.
  • Inter-meeting Updates: Dan notified the membership of this new discount

Start maintaining a petty cash box in the building

  • Previous status The board voted unanimously to keep a petty cash box in the building
  • Dan is making progress

Phone System

  • Chris H. wants to know what MMS would like to have done with the now-decomissioned Avaya phones & phone system. Since he brought them in, he feels responsibility for them. Would the BOD like for him to remove them from the premises, or will MMS take care of it?
  • The board voted unanimously to have Chris remove the equipment

MMS Webpage

  • Existing hosting is through Rackspace. Rackspace no longer offers the level of hosting that MMS has currently (we're grandfathered in to current performance & pricing).
  • There have been performance issues with the website (Apache or MYSQL crashes, must be manually restarted)
  • Linode offers much better performance for roughly the same price (see chart below)
  • Chris H. will volunteer his time to help set up the Linode account, create the backups, move the data between the servers, release the Rackspace account, and migrate the site between hosts.
RS Current RS Minimum Linode
Pricing ~$22/mo ~$28.80/mo ~$20/mo
CPU 1 1 2
RAM 512M 1GB 2GB
Disk 20G 20GB 48GB
Network 200Mb/sec 200Mb/sec 250Mb/sec outbound; 40Gb/sec inbound
Usage Free Inbound / Prorated Outbound Free Inbound/Prorated Outbound 3TB
  • Steve suggested that he's aware of another provider we should consider and will email Chris
  • Carl is concerned that we don't transition into a longer term contract if we're going to re-do the website
  • The board voted unanimously to approve Chris' proposal so long as it's not a long-term contract

911 service at the 'space

  • Previous status DL will follow up with Shane on a cell phone for 911 at the front desk
  • Inter-meeting Updates: phone is now at the front desk in the top-right drawer
  • Lance wants to mount the phone in an obvious location - this will be a Space Improvement Day project

Discuss dropping Thursday night as open to the public.

  • Previous status DL suggested we put this on the message board and ask for someone to be Builders Night Out champion, to do meet and greet and arrange tours.
  • Inter-meeting Updates: Membership has been asked for a coordinator - Caitlin has expressed interest, however so far there seems to be only limited interest in volunteering for this aside from her
  • The board voted to close Thursdays to the public
    • Carl voted no
    • Keith, DL, Adrian, Harvey, Lance and Dan voted yes

Discuss the rotating schedule for new member orientation.

  • Previous status DL will send Keith the schedule and he will update the calendar. ReMMinder bot will need to be updated - Keith will contact Pete
  • Inter-meeting update: Lance updated the calendar

Discuss Schedule for Rotating Board Members at front desk on Tuesday's.

  • Previous status DL will put together a sign up sheet on the bulletin board
  • Dan thanked the other board members for stepping up
  • DL will post a list

Ask Dan (and Brant) to facilitate a informational session for all bod members in April

  • Previous status The board wanted to do this on Sunday April 3 at 10:00 a.m.
  • This happened

Willy's Boat

  • Previous status The board will continue to request updates and monitor the progress
  • Lance says Willy expects to be done before August

Situation about membership of Jay Carver

  • Previous status The board discussed, and a formal announcement will be forthcoming.
  • DL will provide a draft for the board to review

New Business

Poster design contest

  • Lance mentioned the Appleton Makerspace visitors asked if we could give them a poster to advertise our space at theirs
  • The board voted to have a competition to create a new poster for the space, with a cash prize of $25
    • Carl recused himself from the vote, as he intends to submit an entry
    • Dan voted no
    • Adrian, Harvey, Keith, Lance and DL voted to approve

Member complaints about Akai Coit

  • A member has complained about Akai encroaching on his space
  • A new bike bar has been provided to allow him to lock his trike to
  • Akai has been formally put on notice that he will get a warning if we receive further complaints

Space Improvement day 2016 goals and making sure maintenance items are done

  • Keith will update the Wiki page, DL will provide contents

Changes to space rental policy w.r.t. late payments

  • DL will send out the draft of the new policy for review before next meeting

Changes to bylaws and member handbook w.r.t. illegal activities undertaken by members

  • Keith will draft amendments to the bylaws and member handbook

Member Survey

  • Lance will do a new member survey

2016/2017 BOD Goals - Lance

  • Member Engagement - I think the member badge contest was an overall good thing last year. Let's try to do other things to keep our members engaged and enhance the community of makers. Pot Lucks/food during cleaning days are a good thing. perhaps a contest every few months?
  • Dust Collection - Wood shop. The wood shop really needs much better dust collection. I'd like significant effort to focus on getting it to be a clean, safe space. -Lance
  • Signs & Awnings Outside - Let's go through the ordinances, contact the city, and put some beauty on the exterior of our building. -Lance
  • Improvements to Entryways & Meeting area - I think we can do some beautification. I have some ideas and sketches for the next board meeting if you would put it on the agenda Lance. -Carl
  • Update Web Site -Carl

Other potentials for the list - I'd like your thoughts on these:

  • Laser Cutter - run a funding campaign and acquire a new laser cutter for the 'space -Lance
  • Chairs and Tables - the meeting room chairs are becoming dangerous because many are broken - Keith
  • The board discussed the various proposals
    • agreed the dust collector is a goal we want to pursue
    • Tom Gr has donated some new chairs for the meeting room
    • DL will look for new chairs as well
    • The goal of funding a new laser cutter was generally disapproved

Leather Working Area Champion

  • The board voted to approve Caracal and Taylor as leather area champions

Add Candle Making Area

  • The board voted unanimously to approve candle making in the leather working area

Socialize Area Champions Responsibilities? - Keith

  • DL will send out the responsibilities to the current champions and ask for input

Appoint Co-treasurer(s) from outside BOD - Dan

  • Modeled after DL's success with Operations Committee. If we can broaden the workload beyond the 7 of us, why not?
  • Start by having volunteers check the PayPal and Dwolla accounts at the end of the month. No direct handling of cash, highly auditable if fraud is suspected.
  • Dan will continue to handle paper payments or designate another BOD member if needed.
  • So far Steffanie M. has volunteered.
  • DL mentioned that QC Co-lab, and their space has auditors who perform similar functions, and audit the board. They arrived at this after their treasurer defrauded the space
  • Keith will propose an amendment to the bylaws to allow named board members to appoint support committees, subject to a veto by a majority of the board

Provide Scott Swanson with a key to the network closet for wiring cameras

  • The board voted to approve this unanimously

Approve Tom Gr as building area champion

  • The board voted to approve this unanimously

Approve payment for camera and network cable

  • Scott brought in the camera and DVR - funds for this was previously approved (two boards ago)
  • Scott asked for an additional $259.80 for network cable
    • The board voted to approve this
      • DL abstained
      • Keith, Lance, Dan, Harvey, Adrian and Carl approved

Maker Faire

  • Adrian wants to know what our level of involvement and financial support for Maker Faire is.
  • The board reviewed that last year the membership allocated $5000 to Maker Faire
  • Carl lets us know that Maker Faire wants the Space to be involved in the Faire again this year
  • Maker Faire representatives on the board (Adrian and Carl) will need to let us know what requests the Fairs has of the Space at a future meeting

Good of the Space

  • Area champions google group, front page of the wiki, and the area champions page are inconsistent and duplicative. We should try to resolve.
  • Calendars are a challenge, only board members can update the GCal, the groups aren't well suited to signing up for classes, not everyone has access to update the Wiki (or the knowledge about how to do so)
    • DL mentions Wild Apricot might work for events for this
    • Carl is digging into the Google APIs and we might be able to automate posting to the calendar



The meeting was adjourned at 9:32

boardmeetingagenda/2016-04-21.txt · Last modified: 2016/04/22 13:32 by keithm