City of Ashland
PARKS AND RECREATION COMMISSION
February 17, 2003
Present: Commissioners Amorotico, Eggers, Gardiner, Lewis, Rosenthal; Councilor Don Laws; Director Ken Mickelsen
CALL TO ORDER
Chair Lewis called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. at the Parks and Recreation Department Office, 340 S. Pioneer Street
PRESENTATION TO INCREASE THE FOOD AND BEVERAGE TAX FROM 5% TO 6% FOR FUNDING THE PARKS, TRAILS, AND OPEN SPACE PLAN
Commissioner Gardiner stated that the purpose of the meeting was to determine the Ashland Parks and Recreation Commissionís recommendation to the City Council regarding this proposal, as well to discern APRCís recommended timeframe for proceeding. Director Mickelsen stated that, in order to get the proposal on the May ballot, the Council would have to take action by March, and for the September ballot, by July.
Guy Nutter, 1037 Pinecrest Terrace, spoke on behalf of himself and The Ashland Trails Users Group which strongly support parks and trails in Ashland. He supports the 1% tax increase proposal because he thinks it will clear up misconceptions the public has that all of the 5% currently is spent on Open Space acquisitions. Big, expensive parks are meeting with growing resistance by the public, but less expensive trails are easier to galvanize support for. He encouraged the entire Parks and Recreation Commission to support the proposal.
Pat South, 76 N. Pioneer Street, is the owner of Tabu Restaurant and spoke on behalf of himself and other restaurant owners in Ashland. He stated that restaurateurs are disappointed with the idea of raising the meals tax by 1%. While trails are important, he believes the City should find another way to fund them, because Ashland restaurateurs are already unfairly singled out for taxation.
Discussion Among Commissioners
Commissioner Eggers stated that she was not in favor of raising the tax by 1%. She preferred to wait and see what the Council would do with the Open Space proposal presented to them by the APRC. Chair Lewis offered to present whatever decision the APRC agreed upon to the City Council at their Tuesday, February 18, 2003, meeting.
MOTION Ė Commissioner Lewis moved that the Ashland Parks and Recreation Commission should continue to support the funding of the Open Space plan, recognizing the need to develop a funding mechanism to go forward with the short-term plan. Further, the APRC eagerly awaits the City Councilís decision on the plan. Commissioner Gardiner seconded.
The vote was: 5 yes - 0 no
ADJOURNMENT Ė By consensus, with no further business, Chair Lewis adjourned the meeting at 7:45 p.m.
Susan Dyssegard, Department Secretary
Ashland Parks and Recreation Department