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Parks and Recreation Commission Minutes

CITY OF FULLERTON
PARKS AND RECREATION COMMISSION
MEETING MINUTES

City Council Chamber
Monday, September 10, 2007
6:30 p.m.


CALL TO ORDER

Chair Russell called the meeting to order at 6:34 p.m.

FLAG SALUTE

Chair Russell led the flag salute.

ROLL CALL

Present:Shawna Adam, Sueling Chen, Kathleen Dasney, Craig Russell, Kathleen Shanfield, Nancy Spencer, Scott Stanford.

Absent:None

Staff:Parks and Recreation Director Joe Felz, Parks and Recreation Managers Grace Carroll Lowe, Alice Loya, Dannielle Mauk and Judy Peterson; Administrative Analyst Chris Gerry; Outdoor Recreation Coordinator Yvonne Pedersen; Building and Facilities Superintendent Lyman Otley; Landscape Superintendent Dennis Quinlivan; Director of Engineering Don Hoppe

PUBLIC COMMENTS

None.

CONSENT ITEMS (Items 1 - 3)

Chair Russell requested a motion to approve the Consent Calendar items. Vice Chair Dasney MADE A MOTION and Commissioner Spencer SECONDED the motion to approve the Consent Calendar items.

AYES:Adam, Chen, Dasney, Russell, Shanfield, Spencer, Stanford

NOES:None

ABSENT:None

The MOTION PASSED unanimously.

*1.MINUTES OF THE AUGUST 13, 2007 COMMISSIONMEETING

Recommendation to approve the Minutes of the August 13, 2007 Commission Meeting.

*2.LANDSCAPE DIVISION MONTHLY REPORTS FOR AUGUST 2007

Recommendation to receive and file the Landscape Division August 2007 Monthly Report.

Commissioner Spencer asked Landscape Superintendent Quinlivan during what period 42 trees were removed, and he replied in the fiscal year starting July.Vice Chair Dasney confirmed that West Coast Arborists (WCA) operates on a fiscal year basis and also asked about the level of satisfaction and if there were any competitors, noting that several cities use WCA.Superintendent Quinlivan said the contract is renewed annually, that he was very satisfied with their service, that WCA was very professional, efficient, and could accommodate the City during emergencies.He added that WCA works well with his staff.

Commissioner Spencer asked about the in-house median project, and Superintendent Quinlivan said it was coming along, but was not as far along as he wanted.When asked, he said seven to eight men were dedicated to the project, plus a lead man would be hired soon to work solely on that, too.

Vice Chair Dasney asked Superintendent Quinlivan about a question at one of theCouncil meetings abouttrees being planted on Lemon near the Fullerton College parking structures.She said Director of Engineering Don Hoppe had said the college, in a spirit of non-cooperation, wasn’t going to participate in funding or planting so the money would come from Engineering’s budget. Superintendent Quinlivan and Director Hoppe confirmed this and Commissioner Spencer was told the trees were planted in tree wells.Director Hoppe said the parking structure footings and grade beams made it impossible for any significant growth; instead the college tried to soften the structure’s look with painting, and extended the sidewalk and planted trees near street.Commissioner Spencer asked about the ownership of the sidewalk, and was told most of it belongs to City, but some is the college’s, and that the limited planting area would still support trees which she agreed about.

*3.BUILDING AND FACILITIES DIVISION MONTHLY REPORT FOR AUGUST 2007

Recommendation to receive and file the Building and Facilities Division August 2007 Monthly Report.

REGULAR BUSINESS (Items 4 - 11)

4.FULLERTON AQUATICS SWIM TEAM (F.A.S.T.) PRESENTATION

Recreation Manager Judy Peterson introduced Lynn Rogers, a parent and a FAST Aquatics Advisory Committee member, who would be making the presentation on behalf of Coach Kevin Perry.He said Coach Perry couldn’t attend because tonight was “Back to Swimming Night” at FAST.

Mr. Rogers provided a Power Point presentation, noting that improvements had been made by FAST through individual and corporate sponsorships to lessen the City’s burden.He said that FAST hosted the Junior Olympics in August with 1200 swimmers for five days, plus their friends and families.With the new score board, which was funded through various sponsors and pledges, a good sound system, also donated, plus support from the City, FAST was able to host the Junior Olympics.He noted that they were unable to host this event two years ago because of an inadequate scoreboard.The cost was between $35,000 to $38,000.

Commissioner Dasney asked about the Coaches Oats sponsorship on the score board, and Mr. Rogers said FAST got City approval to do so, that additional sponsorship panels would be added to the bottom, are easily changeable, and that sponsorships would be changed yearly.

Mr. Rogers described the new starting blocks, ten at $2,000 apiece, with ten more to be purchased after more fundraising. He said they had a swim-a-thon and the parents and businesses were very generous.

Commissioner Stanford asked if the tournament made a profit, and Mr. Rogers said the hope was to at least break even, but that Coach Perry could more easily answer that question.He added that they sell snacks and t-shirts to pay for operating costs, and confirmed that an entrance fee was charged.Commissioner Stanford asked what the advantage was to having the meet in Fullerton, and was told that local hotels and businesses benefit, and that it was easier for FAST parents, who donated most of the labor, to have the meet in Fullerton, plus they would have home field advantage.

Commissioner Spencer asked about visiting parents’ comments about having the meet in Fullerton, and was told the parents were very positive, especially with the new locker room.Mr. Rogers ended his presentation by saying that the Coach would want him to thank the City for its support, and expressed appreciation for the positive changes in the lives of his own two boys, said that almost 2,000 kids took swim lessons this summer, and that FAST was grateful for the relationship with the City.Commissioners Spencer and Dasney said the commissioners should be thanking FAST.

Commissioner Chen asked about the relationship between FAST and the City, and Mr. Rogers provided an example of the Junior Olympics, noting that it was FAST’s responsibility to put on the swim meet and programs.He described the positive working relationship with the City, by saying that a week before the swim meet, the water was very cloudy, and that Maintenance’s response was “outstanding” and “very, very supportive,” and that they took care of the problem.He said Parks and Recreation was also very helpful in coordinating the activities at Independence Park to accommodate the swim meet.Commissioner Chen confirmed that FAST operates the pool and the City maintains it.Commissioner Stanford commented that problems are often brought up but that the positive work of City staff often goes unnoticed.Thus, he suggested that FAST might want to send a letter to the City via Director Felz thanking them for their work, and Mr. Rogers agreed to do so, and thanked the commissioners for their time.

5.FULLERTON GOLF COURSE FEE CHANGES

Administrative Manager Alice Loya provided a brief history of the Fullerton Municipal Golf Course, noting that it was built in the 1950’s by the City, and that it was contracted out to American Golf in the late 1970’s.She said that American Golf comes to the Parks and Recreation Commission and City Council to request any increases in fees.

She then turned the meeting over to Fullerton Golf Course Manager Kevin Keller.He thanked the commissioners, then provided a Power Point presentation of golf course storm damage and subsequent improvements of the last 18 months.He said these included a new fleet of 70 carts, maintenance equipment upgrades including a “fairway unit” mower for a vastly improved turf, and a clubhouse barbecue addition.American Golf also made storm damage repairs at Hole #10 due to broken cement, erosion, and sink holes which included a new channel and rocks, for a total project cost of $60,000, and at Hole #15 because storms took out the side of a hill and damaged the greens, requiring new sod and new drainage at a cost of $20,000.American Golf also redesigned Hole #16 by putting in a bunker, resodding, moving the channel, and improving drainage for better aesthetics and playability, for a total cost of $45,000.

Mr. Keller referred to Attachment B of the agenda letter, which was the rate comparison between Fullerton and other local golf courses, saying the proposed fee increases were well within other courses’ fees.He noted that the increases were one dollar during the week and two dollars on the weekend.

Vice Chair Dasney asked what the early bird hours were and was told sunup to two hours afterwards, allowing early bird golfers to complete the back nine holes before the regular day begins.When she asked, Mr. Keller said SCGC stands for Southern California Golfers’ Club which allows member discounts and benefits.She asked when the changes would be effective, and he said November 1, 2007 if City Council approves their request.

Mr. Keller also pointed out that costs were “definitely up” over the past couple of years, stating that water was up 83% from a year ago, power 28%, maintenance 22%, and other expenses including carts up 50%.He said the investments provided for a better facility with “big strides” made in playability and the condition of the course.

As for financial benefits, Mr. Keller said American Golf was trying to increase revenue which would also increase their lease payments to the City.Revenues to the City have increased yearly, from 58,854 rounds of golf in 2005 (affected by the severe storms) to 73,606 rounds in 2006 and an August 2007 projection of 75,344 rounds.

Commissioner Chen asked what the basis for the lease was and Director Felz said it was a percentage of gross revenues with a minimum monthly guarantee, but that the minimum was greatly exceeded.He also noted that the revenue received helps to fund a variety of programs in the Brea Dam area.

Commissioner Stanford asked whether the carts are bought or leased and was told they were leased on a five-year basis, and the costs shown are AG’s annual cost.

Commissioner Dasney asked if water conservation was being exercised at the golf course.Mr. Keller said they are trying to negotiate a new sprinkler system to better control water use in the lease extension.When asked if golf courses recycle water, he said he didn’t think so although some courses do use reclaimed water.

Commissioner Adam asked about Fullerton residents using the golf course versus other users.Mr. Keller said he didn’t have the exact figures but that during the week, probably 70% are from Fullerton; however, during weekends, it’s a bigger mix of people, and that zip code information is tracked.

Vice Chair Dasney asked about supporting high schools, and Mr. Keller said Fullerton high school teams pay $6.00 to play Monday through Friday, and that AG provides range balls at half price, and sells equipment at cost plus ten percent.When she asked if all the high schools have teams, Mr. Keller said he wasn’t sure, but that seven or eight different school teams use their facility.

Commissioner Shanfield said her husband plays elsewhere and he pays a lot more so she would tell her husband to play at the Fullerton course instead.She also asked about any customer feedback on fee increases, and was told the proposed increases were posted but other than a couple of senior golfers, they have not received much comment.

Commissioner Adam asked about advertising and was told the golf course does a lot of advertising through American Golf as a corporation which has a website and sends out e-mail “blasts.”The golf course also has a dedicated e-mail data base and advertises in the LA Times, while the City advertises the golf course through its newsletter.Manager Loya noted that American Golf also operates Coyote Hills and Los Coyotes golf courses.

Commissioner Chen asked about golf instructor certification and Mr. Keller said there is a certification program through the PGA, but that there are those without certification who are highly qualified due to their experience and skills.He said the course only has one instructor, Kelly Bowen, who is highly qualified and played professionally.

Commissioner Spencer said she had received complaints about the check-in policy because the players get backed up.Mr. Keller said they ask players to check in only 15 minutes before their tee time because otherwise the players often check in, then wander off and are hard to find to get their equipment and their carts in a timely fashion. However, if there are players with special needs who need help with their clubs or more time to get to their carts, he said they would make exceptions and provide assistance and allow them to check in sooner.

Chair Russell asked for any discussion or questions but there were none.Commissioner Stanford MADE A MOTION to approve the fee increases proposed by American Golf and Commissioner Chen SECONDED the motion.Chair Russell called for the vote.

AYES:Adam, Chen, Dasney, Russell, Shanfield, Spencer, Stanford

NOES:None

ABSENT:None

The MOTION PASSED unanimously.Director Felz noted that this item would go forward to Council for its approval with the fee increases effective November 1.

6.NORA KUTTNER TRAIL MODIFICATIONS

Director Felz introduced the Nora Kuttner Trail Modifications agenda item, saying that this was a high priority issue due to conflicts in trail usage and that staff was recommending a proposal to mitigate these problems.He provided a Power Point presentation, noting the Nora Kuttner trail was located at Euclid, next to Robert E. Ward Nature Preserve, and that the site map was looking west up the trail.

Director Felz said that several months ago, City crews took out weeds and rototilled, creating a 47 foot wide path for weed abatement and fire prevention purposes.He then provided pictures of the path where it was only about three people wide, making it risky for walkers when cyclists come down at a fast rate.He also indicated where the fence stood between the trail and nature preserve, noting where the access points were.

Director Felz said the City had been receiving calls and complaints, so staff wanted to separate the uses by having bikes go on the northern portion while horses and pedestrians could use the southern portion, and that they could utilize in-house resources.He said Bill Naylor from the Rec Riders was present, and that his club does not want to have horses on their trail due to the bikes.He acknowledged staff who had been working on this project including Recreation Manager Grace Carroll Lowe, Outdoor Recreation Coordinator Yvonne Pedersen and Landscape Superintendent Dennis Quinlivan, saying they would be happy to answer any commissioner questions.

Commissioner Spencer asked about additional fencing, and Director Felz said they would use existing fencing, taking out a small amount of fencing to create access, and install a very small amount of new fencing to prevent bike riders from going through the horse and pedestrian trail.He confirmed that signage would be installed at both ends to provide direction.

When asked, Director Felz replied that the area discussed was the only area on the trail where there were so many problems due to the long downhill route very popular with bicyclists who liked picking up speed.He also confirmed that bike traffic had increased lately, and Commissioner Shanfield agreed, adding that this was definitely a safety issue.She asked if the dividing fencing was necessary, and said that leaving the fencing might, instead, keep cyclists on the wrong side of the fence. When she asked if the fence couldn’t just be removed, creating a very wide path that all users could take, Director Felz said there were plans for improvements at the Nature Preserve and Coyote Hills, so the City doesn’t want to make expensive or involved improvements, hence, this interim improvement.He said he wasn’t aware of the history of the fencing but assumed it was there from the time it was Chevron property.

Commissioner Adam said she has almost hit several cyclists at Euclid when they “fly” into the street; she asked if there was any way to put up a barrier at the bottom of the trail.Director Felz agreed, saying that staff had seen the same problem and also mentioned that by moving the cyclists to the left, they will be forced to slow down, stop, and go left.

Commissioner Shanfield said cyclists also move dirt to make mounds to “catch air” so they might still want to use the Trail rather than the Preserve side.Director Felz said the slope on the other side of the trail would remain so both sides would have the same elevation drop, and that staff would work with the cyclists to regrade their trail to provide some design changes the cyclists would enjoy.He also noted that fencing across the top of the trail would force trail users to go around it, thereby reducing speeds there, too.

Commissioner Chen said she had heard many complaints about mixed usage on the trails, and thus, was pleased that staff was looking into this issue.She said the trails were beautiful and wanted to ensure everyone could use them.She asked if it was possible to split different parts of the trails into different usages, e.g. A is for bikers, B is for pedestrians, etc., adding that different ages have different needs, too.Director Felz replied that there had been informal discussions about this, and that there is a healthy mixed use of the trails, that the trails are generally wide, and that the cyclists don’t want to mix so they will generally use one side of the trail.He also said that because the trail system is old and already mixed usage, it would be difficult to separate the uses, something that the Rec Riders agree about. However, he said staff would be willing to continue the conversation.

Commissioner Spencer said they were considering separating the trails at one time, during the Laguna Lake Project, but didn’t think it had been done.Superintendent Quinlivian said that they are proposing separation at the Nora Kuttner Trail and that it was a good idea, especially there because some sections are very narrow.Commissioner Shanfield said it would be difficult to enforce separation of the trails, unless there was some kind of consequence.Commissioner Chen said although she wasn’t against bicyclists, it was not fair if walkers or hikers, who are the silent majority, feel they can’t use the trails.Director Felz agreed and said that that was why they were trying to address the situation, and that fortunately, they had the width in the trails to allow for separation of pedestrians and horses from bikes, and that they would also use techniques to slow the bikes down.

Commissioner Spencer asked if hiking class participants had noticed the problems with the cyclists; Outdoor Recreation Coordinator Yvonne Pedersen said she had noticed some conflicts although the hikers in her class have been trained to use a whistle or warn each other when bikers are coming, so they all shift to the right.She said her classes are held when encounters with cyclists are at a minimum, but they are planning weekend hikes, so she would get input from her hikers.Commissioner Spencer said the cyclists must favor some trails as she never sees any bikers on Juanita Cooke Trail. Coordinator Pedersen said the Fullerton Loop is becoming known as a mountain biking area through the media and biking networks, so there will be challenges in the future.

Commissioner Adam asked about trail hours and was told they were open 24 hours per day, although staff is having a discussion with the City Manager, to be referred later to the Commission, about an ordinance reducing trail hours to 10 or 11 p.m.Commissioner Adam suggested a rule similar to the rules for City facilities, closing the trails at 10 or 11 p.m. for insurance and liability reasons.However, Director Felz said sometimes it’s nice to have bicyclists’ healthy eyes and ears on the trails at night which prevent other non-healthy use of trails, e.g. drinking or drug use.He said they would be working informally with mountain biking groups to identify possible solutions.

Commissioner Stanford said he’s noticed drinking and drug activity near the church property due to a hole in the chain link fence, so he agreed trail use might discourage that kind of activity.

Commissioner Shanfield noted that the area referred to is called “Hospital Hill” for a good reason.She also said that she fully supports the trail improvements but wants the item to return to Commission to consider other options such as widening or moving the fence as she wasn’t sure the current proposal would solve the problem.Coordinator Pedersen said stepovers were being considered so that bikes would have to stop completely, thereby reducing their speeds.

Bill Naylor, President of Rec Riders spoke, saying he spoke with staff, and complimented them on the trail system with over 30 miles of trails, saying his organization promotes all uses of the trails where practical. He then said the diagram does not accurately describe the twists and turns of the trail which obscures one’s view, and that he has seen cyclists having to lay their bikes down to prevent running into horses.

Mr. Naylor said his suggestion to staff was to have the horses on the north side instead because the soil on the south side is harder and more compacted, which cyclists prefer. He also said some areas are too narrow on the south side, sometimes only three feet wide due to erosion on the sides of the slopes.Director Felz clarified that Maintenance would be compacting the proposed bike side of the trails, and that some blind spots at the access points made it more advisable to keep pedestrians on the Nora Kuttner Trail, and that there would be fencing or a step over on the Trail as well.He also noted that the fencing at the top of the trail was incorrectly placed in the diagram and would be located at the top of the existing Nora Kuttner Trail, not on the proposed trail, so that a clear path would be allowed for cyclists to pick up some speed.Mr. Naylor said a similar safety situation exists west of the planned improvement so if the opportunity exists, it would be beneficial to address this area as well.

Commissioner Chen asked if the trails attract cyclists from all over, and Mr. Naylor said they do, due to the internet and bike magazines.Director Felz said they’ve asked the same question, and have been told there are few trail resources so close in a city setting, so especially Monday through Friday, there are a lot of bicyclists.

Chair Russell said financially, it would seem easier to put walkers on the new area as it would not need to be compacted, plus two compacted areas would create two areas for bikers.Thus, he wanted staff to re-think this, the cul-de-sac access notwithstanding.Director Felz said staff would be open to either suggestion and could probably adjust the access to answer those safety questions.However, the new area would still require some compaction as even hikers and joggers wouldn’t want to be in the very soft soil.He said two variables are addressed by having hikers on the south side: the two blind spots at neighborhood access points and the best options for stopping bikes before Euclid.However, he said staff was prepared to act immediately per the Commission’s recommendation and both options were workable.

Chair Russell said, living on the other side of town, his experience with the Nora Kuttner trail was limited and he would leave the decision to staff.He asked for further discussion and Commissioner Chen said she just wanted to say she was happy the trail was being divided.

Vice Chair Dasney MADE A MOTION to approve the staff recommendation for the proposed trail modifications and Commissioner Chen SECONDED the motion.Chair Russell asked for further discussion, and hearing none, called for the vote.

AYES:Adam, Chen, Dasney, Russell, Shanfield, Spencer, Stanford

NOES:None

ABSENT:None

The MOTION PASSED unanimously.

7.CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM UPDATE

Director Felz noted that one of the challenges he faced when starting his new job was sorting out the many Parks and Recreation Capital Improvement projects.He added that while City Council sets priorities, the scheduling and priorities shift, based on the complexity of the projects, fast-tracking, grant deadlines, etc.He said he wanted to provide the “big picture” on the CIP to Commission with short- and long-term objectives, acknowledging Engineering Director Don Hoppe’s presence and assistance.

Utilizing the CIP Status Update attachment, Director Felz made comments on the 27 projects listed by priority:

#1:Richman Park - Will be completed with an opening date of October 2 at 3:00, prior to the City Council meeting.

#2:The Neighborhood Parks Project (Adlena, Byerrum and Valencia parks) - Started construction today, with Adlena to begin in 10 days.Wading pools have been demolished and fencing is up.School principals and parents have been notified.Engineering was thanked for fast-tracking the item.

#3:Laguna Lake & Trail Improvements (Phase II) - Was based on grant funding which is not available so a scaled-back project was needed.About $500,000 will be used to primarily connect the trail on the Euclid side of the park, create ADA access at the parking lot and wheelchair access at the southeast side of Laguna Lake, and provide for minor tree planting at both ends of the park, cleanup work, and erosion control.Staff will meet with the neighborhood to explain the changes, and then send the project out to bid.The project must be completely wrapped up by May 2008; thus, there wasn’t time to return to Commission; however, Commission had already seen and approved all the elements, but the current project is only Phase II instead of the Phase II and III they had reviewed.

#4:Lions Field Improvements - Are very close to the final design stage.The geologic work on the east side retaining wall has been completed and design alternatives are nearing completion.Final circulation and parking options are also almost complete with some good ideas from Engineering to resolve difficult traffic issues.This item, after a meeting with the sports field users group, will return to Commission, then go on to Council.

#5:Richman Park Community Center - Still requires some State review but is moving along.

#6:Tennis Center Pavilion Renovations - Are nearing final design, have already received Commission and Council approval, and funding is in place.

#7:Richman Park Athletic Field Lighting Agreement - Was being negotiated with the Fullerton School District, was recommended for approval by the Superintendent, and will be going to the School Board tomorrow (September 11) for approval with City staff in attendance.Some minor changes require the agreement to go back to Council and then the project will go out to bid.

#8:Gilbert Park Community Center – Staff is working on the utilities and getting the temporary building installed.The project is expected to be completed in six months.

#9:Independence Park Locker Room Air Conditioning – Is currently in design.Costs were higher than anticipated for the recent locker room renovations so the air conditioning was not installed as planned.However, the air circulation is very poor with a lot of steam from showers, so the air conditioning will be installed.

#10:Gilman Park – Council approved the project which included lengthy discussions with the neighbors.Council direction is to replace the play equipment and develop a master plan with a $250,000 budget.This is a “challenging project” regarding security, and staff and one or two commissioners will meet with the neighbors before any work is done.

#11:Hillcrest Park Master Plan – Staff will return to Commission to revisit this project after the Lions Field plan is complete, re-engage the Master Plan Committee, add new members, and review new areas including the top of the reservoir in addition to the ten year old Master Plan.

#12:Downtown Public Art Program – Two projects are in the bid process and on track.

#13:Bastanchury Park / Amerige Heights Community Center – There are two components:1.)The nearby residential development is moving forward, has been to Planning Commission but must still go to Council, and includes two small parks approved ten years ago, linear greenbelts which creates safe access to Bastanchury from Hughes Drive.The proposed Amerige Heights Community Center project, a one-acre site, is in discussion with the developer, which will then go to Commission for a recommendation to the Planning Commission and then on to Council.

#14:Valley View / Hiltscher Trail Improvements – Is a small project at Hiltscher Park going from Euclid west for several hundred yards.Significant resident encroachments were resolved so that improvements can be made.

#15:Tri-City Park – The Park is not in good shape so all three cities have approved a capital project for immediate improvements for the restrooms and the trail as well as clean-up of the picnic areas.Bids are out for slurry sealing of the parking lots, and initial approval has been approved from the County for a master plan.Final approval will trigger a master planning effort which will involve users and commissioners from all three cities.

#16:Vista Park – A small $25,000 project that was a remnant of the gazebo project, this effort will renovate turf areas and clean up the area near restaurant.

#17 – 27:– These projects include minor work done for the Park Monument Project, athletic school lighting design, initial concepts for Rolling Hills, baseball/softball backstop replacements, the Independence Park Master Plan, citywide trail improvements and markers, Hillcrest Park Rehabilitation, Laguna Lake – Phase III, Lemon Park improvements, Tennis Center improvements to the parking lot and street, and Downtown Plaza safety improvements and renovations.The City is waiting until the earlier priorities are underway and the park planning manager is in place to begin at the start of 2008.Those items also have the majority of their funding in 2008 – 2009.

Director Felz thanked Administrative Analyst Chris Gerry for his help in organizing the information, and he and Chair Russell asked for questions or comments.

Commissioner Stanford asked about the Tennis Center lighting, and Director Felz said they would be talking with the Director of Engineering within 24 hours as they had just received the report which says eight poles need immediate replacement.He said they are trying to get the quickest resolution possible which is to get emergency funding from the general fund reserves.Commissioner Stanford confirmed with Director Felz that the Center renovations were separate and won’t be affected by the lighting needs.

Commissioner Spencer asked about the Downtown Plaza safety improvements, and Joe said it was to improve safety at the Plaza with equipment such as bollards.

Commissioner Adam asked about the baseball/softball improvements, and Director Felz said they referred to backstops at all the fields which need to be replaced, which they are working on with Maintenance.She also asked about the air conditioning installation at the sports complex snack bar, and Manager Carroll Lowe said she had just received some basic estimates from the facilities manager, and would bring it to the Sports Advisory Committee on Monday.

Commissioner Chen requested that a dollar amount column be included on the CIP list and Director Felz explained that he was trying to focus on timelines but would put this column back in the future.

Vice Chair Dasney said the trail improvements for markers should be prioritized, and Director Felz said staff concurs and would try to move it up, especially as it isn’t that costly.

Director Felz said he and Chair Russell had a discussion about assigning a commissioner at the next Commission meeting to attend neighborhood meetings regarding parks or facilities with Hiltscher Park, Laguna Lake and Gilman being the first three.He said they would have specific dates for those meetings on October 8.

Commissioner Shanfield asked about the timeline for Lions Field improvements, confirming that the final concept plan would be completed by next month and return to Commission in November, then go to Council in December or late November.She was told that Lions Field did not need to be completed before the review on Hillcrest Park would begin.

Chair Russell confirmed that ground would be broken at Lions Field the Summer of ‘08 and that field users would lose at least one sports season.City Engineer Don Hoppe said the project would take at least a year and staff is hoping to lose only one season.He added that the project would be handled as a “project management at-risk” type of design and development where preliminary plans are given to a consultant who then puts together final plans, acting as the project manager, bidding the project independently. He said the benefits included expediting of the process and locked-in costs with prices not to exceed a certain amount, and could easily save up to a year if a firm can be found.Otherwise, groundbreaking would be late summer or early fall.He confirmed an estimated completion date of 2009 although it wasn’t definite, saying he was trying to “beat” all previous timelines.Chair Russell noted that this was a much bigger project than many people realize.

Chair Russell asked if the Gilbert Park facility was coming back to Commission; Director Felz said it would only come back as a permanent project.Chair Russell said he would like to consider the adjacent vacant property, and Director Felz said he and the City Manager would be discussing this possibility and long-range plans, and would exhaust every option to create a satisfactory project.Chair Russell said he would like to have some kind of indication on the project list that the project was temporary; and Director Felz agreed to this.


8.PARKS AND RECREATION COMMISSION APPOINTMENT TO THE PUBLIC ARTS COMMITTEE

Chair Russell said the Commission appointment to the Public Arts Committee was brought back since two commissioners were missing and there were no enthusiastic volunteers.Commissioner Adam said she had read the minutes, appreciated the consideration and agreed to the appointment.Vice Chair Dasney said there were concerns for Commissioner Adam because she was already on the Sports Advisory Committee, and if she didn’t want to do this, she (Vice Chair Dasney) would be willing to do so; however, Commissioner Adam said she would accept this appointment but not accept any others.

Vice Chair Dasney MADE A MOTION to nominate Commissioner Adam to the Public Art Committee and Commissioner Spencer SECONDED the motion.After positive comments from Commissioner Spencer and Dasney, Chair Russell called for the vote.

AYES:Adam, Chen, Dasney, Russell, Shanfield, Spencer, Stanford

NOES:None

ABSENT:None

The MOTION PASSED unanimously.

9.REPORT ON CITY COUNCIL AGENDA ITEMS

Director Felz noted that there were no items to report on.

10.DIRECTOR’S UPDATE

Because of the CIP update, Director Felz said most of the items listed on this portion of the agenda did not need discussion.However, he reported that there was sabotage on the trails near Laguna Lake in which holes were dug to discourage bike riders.He said Parks and Recreation was meeting with the Police on Wednesday to discuss the best strategy including going public to seek assistance in identifying the saboteurs.

He also reported that the Orange County Water District would be installing underground wells in Independence Park and Union Pacific Park, saying the construction will not disrupt park activities and will be very inobtrusive.

11.COMMISSIONER COMMENTS

Vice Chair Dasney congratulated the Museum on the Ohana Day success which had a good turnout and was a wonderful family day.She asked when Commission would hear more about the Civic Center Master Plan.She also asked for the date of the Hillcrest Park Reservoir dedication, and Director Felz said September 18 at 3:00, prior to Council meeting.She encouraged everyone to see the new reservoir, especially before discussions about improvements in that area.

She also asked about the Sports Complex fencing for the nearby HOA, and had confirmed that because the damage is primarily from children from the Sports Complex, the fence will run from where the posts begin to the end of the field.Director Felz said because the City is re-surveying the property line to ensure the fencing is on HOA property, the chain link hasn’t been put up yet.

Vice Chair Dasney also asked for an update on the trails with the downed fencing, saying she wasn’t sure if it had been repaired or not.Manager Carroll Lowe said she would ask Outdoor Recreation Coordinator Pedersen to follow up on this tomorrow and report back to her.Vice Chair Dasney said she could also look into this in the next few days.

Director Felz said the Civic Center Master Plan is proceeding and that the Library is going ahead.However, he said Council sent back the plan with the Boys and Girls Club and Senior Center so the design team is submitting new diagrams which City staff will look at the next week; after that, the City will start working with the user groups again.He said they are planning to include the commissioners in the plans and appoint commissioners to attend the community meetings.He said the new initial drawings looked good.

Vice Chair Dasney said she saw Rancho Cucamonga’s recreation center which was enormous.She said Brea’s is overcrowded, so perhaps Fullerton could attract that market.

Commissioner Shanfield said apparently homeless people were camping on the trails and asked what the best course of action was when encountering questionable behavior in parks and trails.Director Felz said for anything urgent, call the police; but if it’s just camping, call Parks and Recreation staff who can observe them and work with the appropriate police officers.Commissioner Shanfield then asked if the City cleans up the trails.Director Felz said it’s not a regular place that is cleaned, but due to the encampment, he would make sure Maintenance goes out there.

When planning the new trail, Commissioner Shanfield said the City might want to talk to bicycle users and Vince Buck of the Bicycle Users Committee to get feedback on surfacing.Director Felz said he does have mountain biking contacts, but noted the distinct separation of street bikers from mountain bikers.Commissioner Shanfield said, in answer to Commissioner Chen’s previous question about increases in biking, that the population is increasing, making open space even more important when planning for the City.

Commissioner Spencer said she won’t be at the next Commission meeting due to a vacation. Vice Chair Dasney said she would be on the Sister City Korea trip October 12 through the 20, but she would be willing to be on the neighborhood parks committee if they can work around her schedule.

Commissioner Adam complimented Recreation Manager Carroll Lowe on her colorful newsletter cover, saying she had enjoyed the last few newsletters which were “well put together.” Chair Russell also complimented her on the last few newsletter covers, liked the emphasis on youth and families, and wanted to “promote a younger community.”Noting the sharing of class facilities with other cities, especially Brea, he said although he understands that Fullerton’s facilities are overcrowded, he would prefer not to see Brea’s name in the newsletter so often.He also expressed a desire to change the name of the Brea Dam area, and Manager Loya remarked that when a proposal came up to rename the Brea Dam in honor of John Raitt, the Army Corps said it would take an act of Congress since it was a national facility.When Commissioner Adam asked why it was called Brea Dam, Commissioner Shanfield said it was because of the Brea Creek.

Chair Russell adjourned the meeting at 8:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Joe Felz
Director of Parks and Recreation

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