Agendas and Minutes

Ashland Parks & Recreation Commission (View All)

Parks Commission Regular Meeting

Monday, June 23, 2014

City of Ashland
June 23, 2014

Present:  Commissioners Gardiner, Landt, Lewis, Seffinger, Shaw; Director Robertson; Superintendent Dials
Absent:  City Council Liaison: Mayor John Stromberg; Superintendent Dickens

Seffinger called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. in Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main Street.

Study Session – May 12, 2014
MOTION Landt moved to approve the minutes as presented. Shaw seconded the motion.
The vote was: All yes

Regular Meeting – May 19, 2014
MOTION Shaw moved to approve the minutes as presented. Landt seconded the motion.
The vote was: All yes

Duane Whitcomb, 1179 Village Square Drive, a neighbor of the upper section of North Mountain Park and a dog owner, expressed appreciation for the liberalization of dogs in Ashland parks. As the former president of his homeowners’ association and a frequent park visitor, he advocated for a Woof Waste dispenser in that section of the park and for Parks Commission allowance of dogs, accompanied by their responsible owners, in that area.


Robertson said executive recruiter Wendi Brown of W. Brown Creative Partners reported on the open recruitment for Robertson’s director position. After posting the opportunity along the west coast and on the ORPA and NRPA websites, 50 applications were received to date, 19 of which were from qualified candidates. The recruitment period was set to close on Monday, June 30, and the Parks Commission “short list meeting” scheduled for Monday, July 7, with candidate binders distributed to commissioners on Sunday, July 6.

Park Technician III / Irrigation Division Manager Bill Miller reported on drought measures implemented by Parks staff in response to the current drought. Parks irrigation staff frequently met with Water Division staff on water management. Parks staff would continue monitoring water flows and availability versus usage through the summer months. Lithia Park would be the main priority for water due to vegetation needs and historic elements. Staff currently monitored water flows daily but would soon begin monitoring them on an hourly basis.

Miller reviewed a water curtailment spreadsheet that was color coded based on water reduction priorities: red for immediate reductions; yellow for moderate reductions; green for limited reductions and blue – not applicable. Every portion of Lithia Park as well as every other park in Ashland had its own watering requirements based on previously established watering patterns and sun exposure.

Miller said an irrigation hotline would be set in place for citizens wishing to report on irrigation concerns. Hotline information would be posted on the City of Ashland website in the near future.
Miller said he encouraged his staff to educate the public about drought measures in place. He thanked his staff and Parks Administration for their support.

Commissioners thanked Miller for his efforts toward managing the drought and establishing a water hotline.
Robertson said the Mayor requested a commemorative plaque for the Calle Guanajuato in recognition of the relationship between Ashland and her sister city of Guanajuato, Mexico.

Discussion Among Commissioners
For the draft plaque reading “Connecting Ashland, Oregon, to our Sister City,” Landt asked for the removal of the word “Oregon.” Shaw said locals would know the walkway was named after Ashland’s sister city but others might be unclear about that relationship. Landt suggested combining both the name of the walkway and the sister city relationship on one sign rather than attaching a plaque below the existing walkway marker.

MOTION Landt moved to approve directing staff to create a Calle Guanajuato sign for each end of the walkway reading, “Calle Guanajuato: Connecting Ashland to our Sister City.” Lewis seconded the motion.

Discussion of Motion
Rather than attaching a sign or marker below existing signage, commissioners discussed and agreed to create two two-sided signs (same wording on each side) for each end of the Calle and include the name of the walkway along with a brief reference to Ashland’s sister city: Guanajuato, Mexico.

The vote was: All yes

City / Parks MOU Update
In response to Landt’s request for an update on the draft City / Parks Memorandum of Understanding, Robertson said the City Administrator had asked Parks to hire professionals to aid in the creation of a new Parks logo and a Parks style guide; however, agreement had not been reached.

Butler-Perozzi Fountain Renovations Update
In response to Landt’s request for an update on fountain renovations, Robertson said architect Kerry KenCairn had produced as-built design plans and a local contractor was working up price estimates.

RVTD Van Donation
Robertson and Dials said they would be picking up the donated RVTD van later in the week.

New Lithia Park Trail Guide
Dials said an SOU student recently updated the Lithia Park trail guide with the help of Parks staff. The booklet was available for sale in the Parks office and at the downtown Plaza kiosk, with a free version available on the Parks webpage. Commissioners and staff spoke favorably about the newly revised guide.

Forest Lands Commission Report
Seffinger provided a brief update on the work of the Forest Lands Commission.

Lithia Park Rated 20th Best Park in the Nation
Seffinger reported on a recent honor: Lithia Park was named the 20th best park in the U.S. according to TripAdvisor’s “2014 Travelers’ Choice Awards for Attractions.” The award honored top landmarks and parks around the globe and was based on millions of reviews and opinions from TripAdvisor travelers.

GFOA Award for Excellence in Financial Reporting
Seffinger said the commission would receive an award from the Government Finance Officers’ Association for excellence in financial reporting for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2013. The commission had received identical awards for approximately 20 consecutive years.

  • Study session set for July 21 at 7:00 p.m., Wastewater Treatment Plant, 1295 Oak Street. Topics:
    • Parks Logo Discussion
    • Wastewater Outfall Relocation Project Review
  • Regular meeting set for July 28 at 7:00 p.m., Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main Street. Topics:
    • Ice Rink Cover CUP Update
    • Dogs Subcommittee Report
    • Wastewater Outfall Discussion
    • Parks Logo Discussion and Approval
    • Drought Update
ADJOURNMENT– By consensus, with no further business, Seffinger adjourned the meeting at 7:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Dyssegard
Ashland Parks and Recreation

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