Agendas and Minutes

Ashland Parks & Recreation Commission (View All)

Parks Commission Regular Meeting Minutes

Monday, November 23, 2009

City of Ashland






November 23, 2009


Present:    Commissioners Eggers, Gardiner, Lewis, Noraas, Rosenthal; Director Robertson; Superintendent Gies

Absent:     City Council Liaison Silbiger; Superintendent Dials

CALL TO ORDER         

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


Study Session – October 19, 2009

Under “Upper and Lower Clay Street Property Discussion,” Eggers suggested correcting the first sentence of the last paragraph to read: “Commissioners agreed that identifying potential elements for the park site would provide clarity to community members.” In the following sentence, she requested rephrasing as follows: “commissioners will be considering open lawn, playground….”

MOTION Rosenthal moved to approve the minutes as amended. Noraas seconded the motion.

The vote was: 5 yes – 0 no

Study Session – October 26, 2009

Under “Golf Course Issues,” Rosenthal said he did not recall hearing the commission agreeing that the walking trail and cart path could not be combined. Gardiner said they discussed how the walking path would not necessarily follow the same route as the cart path. Rosenthal suggested correcting the wording to read: “A combination walking trail / cart path was discussed and the commission agreed that the two might not follow the same route.”

In the same section, in reference to the golf course’s designation as the “second largest city-owned park land,” Eggers suggested clarifying the phrasing to read: “… the 66-acre property was the second largest city-owned developed park land.” She also recommended changing the words “deferring to” to “consulting with” in reference to discussions with the disc golf association regarding a disc golf course being overlaid onto the existing golf course.

Under “Pesticides Discussion,” Eggers asked that the phrase “after several years” be removed from the sentence that referred to the request for a staff report on reductions of pesticides within the parks system.

MOTION Eggers moved to approve the minutes as amended. Lewis seconded the motion.

The vote was: 5 yes – 0 no

Regular Meeting – October 26, 2009

Under “Request from Public Arts Commission to Place Memorial Sculpture in Japanese-style Garden in Lithia Park,” Eggers said the request was not “tabled pending Parks Commissioners’ attendance at the November 20 Public Arts Commission meeting,” but was simply tabled, with two Parks Commissioners voicing interest in attending the November 20 meeting.

Under “Upper Clay Street Property Discussion,” Eggers asked that the motion include the words “would consider these elements for likely inclusion…” rather than “chose for likely inclusion….”

MOTION Noraas moved to approve the minutes as written. Eggers seconded the motion.

The vote was: 5 yes – 0 no


Open Forum

Stephen Strum, 538 Granite Street, proposed a hiking trail on Lithia Park land along an upper area of Granite Street. He said redirecting foot traffic off Granite Street near the Ashland Creek Drive intersection would allow hikers to visit a beautiful section of the park while avoiding accidents at that curve in the road. He said three car accidents and one bicycle accident occurred at that location over the past few years. He showed commissioners a street map of the area, an aerial Google Earth map, and a photograph of the proposed trail location.

Commissioners spoke favorably of Strum’s proposal and suggested including it in the budget planning process. They invited Strum to participate in upcoming Parks Commission budget sessions.




City of Ashland Administrative Services and Finance Director Lee Tuneberg presented the Ashland Parks and Recreation Commission’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) for the year ending June 30, 2009, and said the commission was responsible for its contents. He guided them through key points contained within the document as well as the auditor’s management letter. He thanked the commission and Parks staff for their support during the auditing process.

Commissioners agreed to place the item on the December 21 regular meeting agenda for approval.



Robertson said the commission previously discussed the possibility of conducting a dedication ceremony for the newly completed Scenic Park. He said a ceremony could include speeches, light refreshments, photo displays of the park’s construction, and invitations to media contacts.

Commissioners agreed to schedule a ceremony on an April evening or during a weekend and to feature the new community garden at the Scenic Park location.



William Hayes of the Sons to Glory, Men of Thunder Ministries requested reductions or waivers of fees associated with Pioneer Hall rentals on Sunday, November 29, and Sunday, December 27, from 2-6:00 p.m. He said his ministry, which provided hot meals for homeless and low income community members, operated on a budget of less than $1,500 per year. He said 2009 would be the sixth year for serving holiday meals at Pioneer Hall. He said facility rental fees—including hourly rates and security deposits—would reduce the amount available for food and gift purchases for the 100+ attendees per event. He said his organization also offered a religious message at the meals to provide encouragement and hope to participants.

Discussion Among Commissioners

Commissioners expressed general interest in supporting the request for fee reductions and/or waivers but several voiced discomfort with the religious message, citing its potential conflict in terms of separation of church and state. They debated waiving the security deposits and/or the hourly fees.

MOTION Lewis moved to authorize a one-time waiver of hourly rental fees for Pioneer Hall on Sunday, November 29, and Sunday, December 27, from 2-6:00 p.m. Noraas seconded the motion.

                                         The vote was:   Gardiner, Lewis, Noraas – yes

                                                                 Eggers, Rosenthal – no


Robertson said the November 16 study session included a preliminary discussion about the potential of bonding for the purchase of the lower Clay Street property and possible additional projects like park developments. He invited Lee Tuneberg to speak to the commission about bond options.

Lee Tuneberg said bond options available for consideration included general obligation bonds, revenue bonds, and full faith and credit bonds. He spoke of the advantages and disadvantages of each bond option and asked the commission to review their needs and timelines in order to make the most appropriate choice, if they decided to bond. He said bonding required council approval because it affected the city’s ability to bond or to borrow.

Discussion Among Commissioners

Commissioners asked a number of questions about the bond process, including interest rates for municipalities, an appropriate amount to borrow, application costs, processing time, and the notion of creating a list of items to include for development or purchase within the bond amount.

Tuneberg advised the commission to determine whether it would be better to finance their projects over time or to pay for them using a bond.

Robertson said the commission would want to bid on the proposed projects in advance of the bond process so that accurate numbers could be included within the bond papers. He told Tuneberg that staff and the commission would contact him again in the near future regarding the bond process.


Eggers and Noraas agreed to schedule the first Pesticides Subcommittee meeting that evening at the conclusion of the regular meeting.

Robertson said the Ashland Rotary Centennial Ice Rink opened for the season on Friday, November 20.

Robertson reported attending a holiday meal at the Ashland Senior Center earlier in the evening. He said it was hosted and served by Ashland Fire and Rescue employees for the benefit of the seniors.


Eggers requested an update on the status of the issues identified by the Green Team. Staff said they were working to resolve all issues within the report and would send a summary report to the commission.


  • Study session set for December 14 at 7:00 p.m., Parks office, 340 S. Pioneer Street. Topic to include:
    • Start goal setting process
  • Regular meeting set for December 21 at 7:00 p.m., Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main Street.

ADJOURNMENT– By consensus, with no further business, Gardiner adjourned the meeting at 9:20 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Susan Dyssegard, Ashland Parks and Recreation Department

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