Board or Committee Meeting
Tuesday, February 8, 2022 - 6:30pm

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Virtual Meeting-Feb 8, 2021 at 6:30pm



  1. Take roll
  2. Review, vote on editing or accepting minutes from January
  3. Conduct business  (mobile phones can download Microsoft Teams App: (Call Joanne if issue 301-814-3637)



  1. Arts Council Vacancies - one to be filled
  2. City Updates - Joanne
  3. Projects to complete in FY22 – All (Angie, Keri)
    1. Schedule
    2. Costs
  4. Proposals for FY23 – Michael, Bharati
  5. PGAHC Public Art Planning Grant – public surveys (Gen)



MINUTES     Virtual Meeting-Feb 8, 2022 6:30pm


1. Take roll :

• Members:  Melissa Holland, Michael Spears, Inka Patel, Angie O’Neal, Charles Clyburn, Bharati Dhruva, Tony Small.  City Liaison: Joanne Barr

• LAC public art Consultant: Gen Fraser

• Guests: Robert Love, Director, City of Laurel Dept of Economic & Community Development

2. Review, vote on accepting minutes from December: Inka accepted, seconded by Michael 


1. LAC membership. 

a. Melissa stated that we still have an arts council vacancy to fill. 

b. The LAC Secretary role is unfilled. No members are willing to take on the role, so it will be rotated among members. Angie agreed to help out with minutes until we have secretary’s position filled in. Bharati agreed to take minutes for Feb. meeting.


2. Robert Love discussed the constraints that come with by the new zoning ordinance for public art, which makes the LAC responsible for approving or denying a proposal for public art (mural, sculpture, etc.). 

Mr. Love explained that since LAC is responsible for approving or denying a public art proposal, members should not directly talk with businesses where public art is being proposed by a private or nonprofit organization, by an artist, or by the business itself.  If a business owner wishes to have public art by a particular artist on their premises, they can approach the City and suggest the artwork. But LAC should not develop the project on behalf of a business or artist, because LAC must be an impartial judge of the suitability of the artwork and the location.

Mr. Love clarified that LAC can suggest a particular public artwork and an artist. If a member suggests a project, then they cannot vote on moving it to funding and will have to recuse themselves.  Basically, LAC members cannot vote to fund an artwork if they are in any way involved with the business or artists. In addition, LAC members cannot vote to approve privately funded public art it if the members are in any way involved with the business or artists.

Joanne further clarified that if a work is to be funded by the City, then LAC can on behalf of the City look for a site for the art within the City limits.  This means they can talk to businesses to see which are willing to serve as a site. In fact, it is legally required that a venue be selected and agreed to before a competitive call for artists – as required by City or other public funding – can be published. 

For artwork funded by the City, even on private property, the artwork will be owned by City. Then, the City and the bldg. owner will sign a written agreement governing maintenance and retention of the artwork.

If the artwork is to be funded by another organization or private citizen/group, then it is not OK for LAC members to recommend sites or artists. ?  

Joanne  also suggested that there may be circumstances where an artist’s work can be justified for sole source City funding.  For example, a playground expansion may call for the original company to perform the work, if the playground liability insurance only covers parts produced by that company.  Similarly,  if a competitive call for artists receives only one bid, then the choice of artist may be justified as sole source.


3. City Updates

a. Role of LAC: Discussion of constraints led members to see LAC as increasingly as a reviewer of proposals for public art (rather than initiator), balanced with envisioning new ideas and projects.

b. Melissa suggested LAC members review city-owned places (parks, buildings).


4. Projects to complete in FY22 – Angie, Keri

a. Art for schools: Angie estimated that supplies for art education this spring will run $500-$800. She will be meeting with Laurel Elementary School to decide the number of students to participate in a public art exhibit and to estimate the supplies needed on that basis. The school’s preference is to have an in-person rather than a virtual exhibit. Looking to a meeting this month.  

b. Paving the way for LAC-sponsored art shows in local cafes and restaurants, Angie is displaying her work at the new Love Life Café in Laurel Shopping Center.

c. Keri previewed her upcoming artist spotlight, which will feature Michael and his paintings.


5. Proposals for FY23 – Michael, Bharati

a. Melissa presented a table relating LAC projects over the life of the council to LAC funding and partnerships.  The table leaves future projects open.

b. To address future projects, Michael showed and discussed a plan for LAC public art with a breakdown by genre and types of art. For FY23, he recommended installing sculptures and banners on Main Street, noting that sculpture does not carry the complexities of façade preparation that murals involve. He also recommended an arts festival on Main Street with visual and performing arts, and he pointed to outdoor music and outdoor theater as other important arts events.  For exhibitions, he recommended both juried and non-juried exhibitions so as to engage professional artists as well as amateur and youth artists. He indicated the Montpelier Art Center as a venue for juried exhibits (POC: Dieckeymeyer 301.446.3251) and suggested that the Laurel Art Guild advise us on those.

c. Michael asked that members come up with estimated costs for each art genre and category to go into the FY23 budget request that will go to Joanne and then up to the Mayor’s office. Michael is providing estimates for sculpture and banners.     


6. Public art surveys – LAC’s grant from county (PGAHC) requires surveys and feedback about public art from the community. Gen, LAC’s public art consultant, reported that she develop surveys for businesses, which were distributed via the mailing list of Laurel Dept of Economic & Community Development’


Meeting was adjourned at 7:40 p.m. (moved by Michael, seconded by Inka).

Next meeting on Tuesday, March 8 at 6:30pm


Prepared by Bharati Dhruva, with Melissa Holland

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Parks and Recreation

The Department of Parks and Recreation offers recreation programs and services throughout six facilities and 19 park sites encompassing over 222 acres of parkland.