Agendas and Minutes

Ashland Parks & Recreation Commission (View All)

Parks Commission Study Session

Monday, July 21, 2014

City of Ashland
July 21, 2014

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

Seffinger called the study session to order at 7:05 p.m. at the Wastewater Treatment Plant, 1295 Oak Street.

Dickens presented a new draft Parks logo displayed on green and white shirts. Versions included a black and white logo and a color logo. Dials pointed out that evergreen branches and cone sizes varied. “1908” was included in the logos, the year of the commission’s founding. Robertson suggested adding the word “Commission” after “Ashland Parks and Recreation.”

Discussion Among Commissioners
Commissioners provided feedback on the draft Parks logos. Shaw voiced support for the color logo and said he preferred not using the word “Commission.” Landt liked the non-color logo but said it was a personal aesthetic choice. He suggested not using the word “Commission.” Lewis said the color version could be used for trucks and the black and white for shirts. He suggested not including the word “Commission.” Gardiner thanked staff for their efforts as branding was important. He felt the logo was ready to go. Seffinger liked the color version best but suggested allowing for both options. She noted her preference for a darker colored green shirt rather than the lighter green presented that evening.

Dickens displayed a draft park sign with the revised logo and green lettering. He said the trucks and Parks letterhead would be the first items to feature a new logo.

When asked about the revised golf course logo, Robertson said it was already used on hats sold at the golf course. Once the Parks and golf logos were approved, they would appear on everything: T-shirts, hats, signs, and vehicles.

Staff was directed to include “Parks Logo Discussion and Approval” on the July 28 regular meeting agenda.

Engineering Services Manager Scott Fleury said Public Works staff and consultants were on hand to tour the proposed wastewater outfall site with the commission and to answer any questions. Meeting attendees introduced themselves: consultants Jason Smesrud, Principal Technologist with CH2M Hill, and David Primozich, Director of Ecocystem Services for The Freshwater Trust; Helman Elementary School teacher Mia Driscoll; Rogue Valley Audobon Society representative Pepper Trail; and Jonathan Gasik, Senior Wastewater Engineer with OR DEQ. Fleury said Gasik would be writing the City’s next permit for the treatment plant and could answer regulatory agency questions.

Smesrud said the commission heard a preliminary project status report in June. Per a July 8 meeting with the DEQ and ODFW, the permit renewal would not occur in the fall timeframe; instead, the schedule for completion was pushed out to early 2015. This meant no immediate decisions were necessary. Additional field work and water quality sampling were needed as well as modeling to determine the best outfall location and temperature needs relative to wetlands.

Confirmation was received from DEQ that direct discharge into Ashland Creek would no longer be allowed. Discussion ensued regarding flow needs and / or fish habitat restoration to address fish resource issues. Data were identified and additional water and effluent samples taken over four weeks to fill in missing parameters. A field crew would visit the site the following day to take stream measurements at proposed outfall locations. The Freshwater Trust was working with others on water rights exchange projects, water rights possibilities and water diversion from Ashland Creek to Bear Creek.
Landt said the last time the commission heard an update on this project, wetlands were discussed as a possible source for temperature cooling. He asked if that method would be cost prohibitive. Smesrud said there were a number of challenges involved in that method. Up to ten acres could be needed around the WWTP for outfall so a land conversion might be the best option, as only 3.9 acres were currently available at the site. Robertson said the lands around the area were purchased through Oregon State Parks using federal funds.

The topic of jurisdictional wetlands was discussed in terms of whether the land could accommodate the pumping of discharge into wetlands. Gasik said someone would need to walk around the area and make an assessment.
Fleury said the City owned and controlled the water rights for Ashland Pond.

The group toured the existing outfall location and potential future outfall locations and discussed pipeline routing alternatives.

Smesrud talked about the mixing zone and said it was the area where effluent and creek water met. Fleury said the next phase would outline how the water left the pipe and entered the outfall area.

Staff and Commissioner Comments
Robertson said Horticulturist and Park Tech III Anne Thayer announced her resignation date: July 31, 2014. An option for her replacement could be a project manager / facilities maintenance supervisor. The arborist role handled by Thayer could be partially managed by the hiring of outside arborists. The horticulture portion of Thayer’s position could be dealt with in-house using existing staff. Landt said this was a topic best managed by the Parks Superintendent in conjunction with the new Parks Director. Consensus was that staff work assignments would be the responsibility / at the discretion of the Parks Director.

Dickens reported that the current Facilities Park Tech II (Custodial Lead) was scheduled to retire on August 31.
Dials said she had been working with planning consultant Craig Stone on a conditional use permit for the ice rink cover. She’d also consulted with City of Ashland Associate Planner Derek Severson and Planning Director Bill Molnar. Staff intended to erect the temporary cover for the ‘14-‘15 ice rink season.

Robertson said the next day, July 22, would be the first day of Parks Director interviews. He outlined the schedule and asked the commission to arrive at the Parks office by 7:30 a.m. The following day, July 23, would be reserved for finalist interviews.

By consensus, with no further business, Seffinger adjourned the study session at 8:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Susan Dyssegard
Ashland Parks and Recreation

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