PARKS & RECREATION COMMISSION
REGULAR MEETING MINUTES
October 30, 2003 at 7:00 p.m.
City Council Chambers
734 Third Street
Brentwood, CA 94513
CALL TO ORDER: The meeting was called to order by Chairperson Ernie Rodrigues at 7:06 p.m.
ROLL CALL: Commissioners present as follows: Commissioner Jan Melloni, Vice Chairperson Lanny Brown, Commissioner Tom Jones, and Chairperson Ernie Rodrigues. Others present were Director Craig Bronzan; Tom Burt, Recreation Services Supervisor; Tammy Homan, Administrative Secretary; Ken DeSilva, Park Services Manager; Janet Hansen Park Planner; and Kerry Salisbury, Recreation Services Supervisor.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE: All stood for the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag.
Some comments by Chairperson Rodrigues regarding those in Southern California who are victims of the fires and also the fire fighters. He then introduced the Chief of Police, Mike Davies who talked about the recent incident in the Balfour-Guthrie Park. He talked about the shooting and said they have obtained an arrest warrant for the person they believe responsible. He said it is the belief of the Police Department that this was not a random act, that there was some connection between the victim and the shooter. He said he is very proud of his department and the work that they have done on this case. He updated them on the condition of the officer who was injured on the way to the scene of the shooting. He discussed patrolling of parks and commented that there are more people out and about at all hours utilizing the park facilities. Commissioner Tom Jones asked if there is more police presence around Balfour-Guthrie Park now than before the shooting. Chief says there is some more police presence. Chief Davies also said there is an increased awareness on the part of the police force in covering the far outskirts of the town. He also commented on the quality of the parks and congratulated the Parks and Recreation Commission on their work. Ken DeSilva, Park Services Manager asked the Chief about sensor lights. Some residents want the lights and others do not, he asked what the best answer is. Chief Davies answered that it was a double edged sword, on one hand the lights are nice, and he prefers motion sensor lights. Also, a problem could be when a park is lighted after hours, it could just be animals triggering the lights. Commissioner Melloni asked also if there if something else they should know as Commissioners in planning the parks. The Chief thought locked bathrooms at night and not a lot of low bushes where people can hide and wide pathways where officers can drive through are good ideas. There was some further discussion on the park safety issue by the Commissioners and the Chief.
PRESENTATION: Waterplay. This item was postponed.
AGENDA REVIEW: Commissioner Brown requested moving Item 7 to 8 and visa versa.
CITIZEN COMMENTS: None.
Item No. 1. Approve minutes of regular meeting of September 25, 2003.
Item No. 2. Accept staff report from Parks Division (B. Margesson).
Item No. 3. Accept staff project status report from Recreation Division (P. Scherff).
Item No. 4. Accept project status report from Facilities Division (M. Merizon).
Item No. 5. Accept update on Sunset Sports Complex Expansion project (J. Hansen).
Item No. 6 Accept update on East Bay Regional Park subcommittee (C. Bronzan).
Commissioner Melloni moved to accept the Consent Calendar as presented. Commissioner Jones seconded the motion and motion carried unanimously.
Item No. 7 DISCUSSION ITEM Pulte Rose Garden park concepts and overall review of the project. (J. Hansen)
Ms. Hansen introduced Lisa Erker and Roger Miller of Pulte Homes, and Phil vanderToolen of vanderToolen Associates, Inc. (the landscape architect firm working with Pulte), and also Angelo Obertello from Carlson Barbee Gibson (engineering firm for the project). She gave some background on the project and previous presentations to the Commission. She said there are not a lot of changes, some reconfiguration and the additional space along with the central park in the center of the project. This has all been mentioned in her staff report. Also some changes in the road width and right-of-ways. She introduced Mr. vanderToolen who would detail the changes and give the overview of the project to date. He went through the booklet that has been included in the Commissioners packets using the overhead. He commented that the park is situated so that people can look into the park from all angles, which is a safety factor for activity around and in the park. He discussed the play equipment, shade and amenities such as picnic structures and locking facilities. He then talked through each park and showed them on the overhead and asked for comments. He emphasized the fact that most of the homes face into the parks, therefore there are “eyes on the park” from all sides at all times, making it comfortable and minimizing vandalism. He discussed lawn areas and trees, etc. Mr. DeSilva, Park Services Manager, asked about signage entering into the development. There will be a structure with Rose Garden theme arched over entry. Commissioner Brown questioned if there were visual obstructions of trees on the road and the response was that it has all be reviewed by the Police Department and City and plans do not show any obstruction of the drivers view. Trails were discussed and the type of landscaping planned. Trail material will be of an asphalt type of construction. Trails planned to be jogging, biking, or hiking trail, and connection to other trails in the community. The question was asked if public access to these trails would be available and the answer was yes. Commissioner Brown asked if all trails were 12-feet wide, and Ms. Hansen said no, some were 10-feet with gravel shoulders. Shade conditions were discussed and felt there was adequate shade in all parks for even the hot months. Mr. DeSilva suggested drinking fountains at various spots along the trails, and Commissioner Jones asked about benches along the trails for people to rest. Mr. vanderToolen said they have planned for benches along the trails.
He then discussed the central park in the development as the hub of the neighborhood, open to other communities in Brentwood. The feature is the Rose Garden with various varieties of roses and a free form play area in this area. There is also off street parking in the development. There is a pool area with locker facilities, restrooms and offices in this area. There is also a pavilion structure, areas for concerts and other activities. Adequate roadway for emergency, city maintenance vehicles, etc. There will be barbecue and play areas near the kiddie pool, and other tables to accommodate the public. The main pool is large enough to accommodate swim meets and lap swimming. Commissioner Brown asked how many parking spaces there are planned for the off street parking, response was 20 to 22, not including the handicapped spaces. He also asked who manages the pool, because the City is to maintain the park. The pool is a 25-yard pool and would accommodate neighborhood swim meets, not large inter-city meets. Mr. vanderToolen stated that they had surveyed several similar types of facilities and in talking to their managers and asking the question, “if you could do your facility over again what would you want or do differently”. The responses to this question were then incorporated in this design. The swim club area will be managed by the homeowners association. Commissioner Brown asked also if there was space enough for a rescue helicopter, and they felt there was. Commissioners had no further questions; however Mr. DeSilva asked about the sidewalks near the parks. He was concerned with areas where cars would park and no sidewalks and grass would wear away faster than where there was sidewalk to step onto. Ms. Hansen said some of these areas may be “tweaked” or changed somewhat in final design. He also asked about the possibility of having signage in front of rose gardens to indicate what type of roses are planted there, similar to Brentwood Park, where signs indicate the types of trees planted. He likes the identification for public information. Mr. vanderToolen thought this a definite possibility. Mr. DeSilva also asked the Commissioners about naming the parks, suggestion to name the parks for the variety of roses planted there. A citizen attending the meeting asked about the trees being planted, wondering if they would be large enough to provide shade for the young children in the play areas in the hot days of summer. Ms. Hansen said that some of the trees even if larger when planted would not shade the taller play structures in the hot weather. Director Bronzan suggested that since the parks are open to all Brentwood citizens, that the Commissioner working with this park consider working with the homeowners so that there is some community support for public wishing to utilize the large central park. Commissioner Jones suggested visually blocking off the private swim club area from the public area. These comments will be taken under consideration by the Pulte group.
Chairperson Rodrigues then asked if there were any Commissioners assigned to this park now and Ms. Hansen said there were no assignments there as yet. He then asked the Commissioners who would be working with Pulte on this project to take a very serious look at the shade element. He then requested a motion to accept the concept they had just viewed. Commissioner Jones moved that the Commission approve the conceptual plan for the Rose Garden Project and continue to work with the developer to assure that the concerns raised at the Commission meeting be taken under consideration. Commissioner Brown seconded the motion, motion passed unanimously.
Chairperson Rodrigues then asked for two Commissioners to serve on this project. After some discussion Commissioner Jones suggested appointing one Commissioner to the project now and then asked the new Commissioner coming on board to serve on this project. Chairperson Rodrigues asked Commissioner Melloni if she would be willing to serve on this project since she had previously been assigned to it. Commissioner Melloni agreed.
Item No. 8 ACTION ITEM Review and discuss Parks & Recreation Department Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2002/2003 and direct staff to take to City Council for acceptance. (C. Bronzan/T. Homan).
Chairperson Rodrigues said that tonight is the time to review this report and he thought it was very well done. He then asked for further comments from the other Commissioners. Commissioner Brown commented on 7.1.3 on page 15, Safe Route to School grant. Ms. Hansen said they have two Safe Route to School grants that they are currently waiting to hear on for the Ron Nunn School and the one in front of Bristow School. All of the Commissioners were very impressed with the report and Tammy Homan, Administrative Secretary was complimented on her work. Director Bronzan gave a brief explanation of the reason for the update and how it will be presented to the City Council if approved. Commissioner Lanny Brown moved to accept this annual report and send it to the City Council for the November 25 meeting. Commissioner Melloni seconded the motion, motion carried unanimously.
Commissioner Jones asked Ms. Homan to send out an email that week to remind them of the City Council meeting.
Item No. 9 DISCUSSION ITEM Designation of Brentwood as a Bicycle Friendly Community (J. Hansen).
Ms. Hansen passed out a packet with a sign City of Brentwood received as a Bicycle Friendly Community. She said that she was very pleased to announce after many years of working on the application. They have just received the information that they have received the Bronze level designation for Bicycle Friendly Community. She included a letter they had received in the packets to the Commissioners and stated that this was a nationwide program. She said at the Bicycle Subcommittee meeting on Monday they discussed the type of celebration to honor this success. There will also be an award to City Council presented November 25th. The Bicycle Subcommittee would like to have a short ride and a celebration on December 7th in the afternoon from 1 to 3 p.m. Time and place will be firmed up later. They are planning on helmet giveaways, educational materials, snacks, etc. She asked for the Commissioners input as to these ideas, dates and any other ideas. Commissioner Jones asked about working with other cities, in coordinating these further attempts at awards, as well celebrating the awards since other Bay Area cities had also received awards. Ms. Hansen said the Bicycle Subcommittee had discussed working with some of the cities and she does have some of the information on the other cities and their accomplishments in receiving awards. She felt interaction with these other award winning cities would give them assistance in pursuing further awards. Commissioner Jones also felt that if Brentwood could coordinate their celebration events with the other cities it would focus more attention through the media. Director Bronzan said there were other opportunities for this type of publicity in utilizing the “Bike to Work Day” and other similar events. Ms. Hansen said the idea behind the award signs was to put them at the entry routes into the city along with the city limit signs. It was noted that they plan to have these signs at all city entrance areas, not on the monuments, but along side. The comment was that there is more activity and some new members of the Bicycle Subcommittee. Commissioner Brown suggested having a workshop partnered with Palo Alto and Folsom at the next conference to discuss possible events. Director Bronzan said this was an excellent idea and all agreed and that this would register as a Community Outreach program. Ms. Hansen said there will be further publicity in the upcoming combined Hometown News and Activities Guide. Chairperson Rodrigues congratulated the Bicycle Subcommittee and asked for any further information on the December 7 event to be distributed to the Commissioners.
Item No. 10 DISCUSSION ITEM Coastal Clean-Up (B. Margesson).
Ken DeSilva, Park Services Manager, reported on this event which was held on September 20. He said the turnout was okay, but less than previous years. He feels there needs to be more public contact and publicity of the event to keep the interest level high. He would like to see posters and flyers in the schools. He feels it is important to continue to have the schools involved so they can see the amount of debris which accumulates in the creeks and make them more environmentally involved. He would like to see the Commission more involved next year and assign individual Commissioners to take flyers to the schools and put out posters to advertise the event.
Item No. 11 DISCUSSION ITEM Verbal follow-up on the NRPA Conference in St. Louis. (C. Bronzan/
Commissioner Brown was very impressed with a fine quality of people and presenters. He also felt the social event was wonderful and very impressive. Director Bronzan said he felt the exhibit hall was the best exhibit hall he had ever been to. He has ordered lots of materials for the Department’s use. He felt the sessions were very good. The next conference in 2004 will be in Reno, Nevada.
Item No. 12. DISCUSSION ITEM Update on CPRS Conference in March 2004 in Anaheim (C. Bronzan).
Director Bronzan said this conference will be held March 10-13, 2004 and he needs to know which Commissioners would be interested in attending. He asked the Commissioners to let Tammy know no later than midweek the following week. Commissioners Rodrigues and Jones will attend. Commissions Brown and Melloni will check their schedules and let her know.
Item No. 13. DISCUSSION ITEM Update on Balfour Road Park bid. (J. Hansen).
Ms. Hansen reported they went to Council the previous Tuesday night and she also submitted her report in the packet for the Commissioners. Misan Construction, Inc. has been awarded the contract which is the same contractor which is doing the Sunset Park Athletic Complex. They were the low bid at $2,689,000. They are also contracting with them for Alternates 1, 2, and 3. Alternate #1 is the horseshoe courts, #2 the two bocce courts, and #3 is the shade structure over the separated smaller picnic area over the volleyball court. The contract has already been sent to the City Manager’s office for signature and they will be issuing the notice to proceed this week. Preconstruction meeting is scheduled for November 12th. Contractor will be mobilizing and getting ready to start construction after that and should see progress by the end of November. Contract calls for a 180 calendar day construction period. The project should be done by late Spring, about the same time as Sunset Park. Commissioner Brown asked about any groundbreaking ceremonies. Ms. Hansen will check with Misan Construction and see if they can find a date during the week for the ceremony.
Item No. 14 DISCUSSION ITEM Update on P.A.L. (Police Activities League). (T. Burt/K. Salisbury)
Kerry Salisbury, Recreation Services Supervisor spoke first about the involvement in National Youth Sports coaching training and how this project is going. PONY baseball has contacted them and the goal is to give standardized training to coaches and hopefully have them be better youth coaches. There will be information in the upcoming Activities Guide on this training. It will be available to church league coaches and also an hour training program for parents. The goal is to change the face of youth sports. This is a nationwide program. He explained his responsibilities with P.A.L. and the types of youth in this program. He spoke of the benefits of the P.A.L. program to youth who would not have the financial resources to participate without this support. There are some new programs coming up in the next Activities Guide. In-line hockey and Lacrosse are among the new programs coming into the community. Others being contemplated are kayaking, wall climbing and golf. He is responsible for the skate park management and reported that there have been a couple of complaints about the park and staff is working on better signage. Staff is being fully trained to make sure helmet laws are enforced. He reported that there have been some injuries recently that have been well handled by the staff.
Commissioner Brown asked if there was a breakdown available of number of boys versus girls involved in the programs. Mr. Salisbury said he had no exact figures, but runs about 90% boys to 10% girls. He also stated this is hard to give exact, since some programs such as ASA softball is all girls and some programs are all boys. He discussed the different levels of sports programs and difference also between the competitive and educational programs.
Director Bronzan then introduced Tom Burt, Recreation Services Supervisor, and discussed the 40 developmental assets previously discussed and noted that both Mr. Salisbury and Mr. Burt have had training in that program. Mr. Burt handed out some material for the Commissioners. He then said that since he had appeared before the group previously he has taken over the “After the Bell” P.A.L. program. He described the program as it is being currently run and demonstrated with some overhead slides. He said it is being run currently in two of the local schools and said that it is now a very strong organized structure and is run on a daily basis. He said the staff is high school students from Liberty, Freedom and also Junior College age students attending LMC and other local institutions. They start out the day with snacks because many do not have adequate meals. Nutrition is so important and given as soon as they come in the door. Next is homework assistance, which is run on the needs of the children. No strict schedule on the time used for homework, but based on time required by the student. They also teach lifetime skills such as responsibility, character development and other values. They also then have recreational time to go out and play, then the facility is closed. The staff does an end of the day evaluation. He emphasized the programs listed in the pamphlet passed out to the Commissioners and stressed the 40 assets and the background of this saying there are 20 external assets and 20 internal assets. Mr. Burt expanded on this and described how the data is collected from each student. Through this information that is gathered they are able to work with the students in strengthening areas that may be weak as they progress through their education levels. Commissioner Jones asked Director Bronzan if they are still planning on bringing the expert from this Search Institute that has introduced the 40 assets program. Director Bronzan said they are hoping to bring this into the Conference of the League of California Cities in July. He complimented Mr. Burt, Mr. Salisbury, and Poldina Scherff for their hard work in bringing these programs into Brentwood. He also further discussed what is happening in this program and their plans for the future. Mr. Burt further discussed his close cooperation with the schools and the seamless integration of the students from school to the PAL Program.
Chairperson Rodrigues thanked them for their report and congratulated them on the good work.
CITIZENS COMMENTS: None
Mr. DeSilva, Park Services Manager, asked the Commissioners to take a look at Oak Meadow Park, comparing now and in about six weeks from now there will be quite a change. The City Manager has been involved with discussions with KB Homes and are working 7 days a week to improve the area, irrigation is done or will be by the following week. Director Bronzan also commented on the progress at this park.
Commissioner Brown commented on the Rose Garden project and wondered if the association would be able to pay for this so that the project does not come back to the City for financial assistance. Director Bronzan said this question has been asked by the City Council and they do not feel it ever could, but if it did they would have to move the fence and change who could use the facility. Commissioner Jones is concerned about Balfour-Guthrie and the incident the past weekend. He wondered if they could remove the park bench that the man was killed at and put a swing set there instead. He thought to get the idea of what happened out of the neighbors minds. Possibly monitor this and bring the subject back to the next meeting. Director Bronzan commented on this subject also. He said he will give them an update at the next meeting.
Chairperson Rodrigues commented on the good feelings he has about the staff and the many good things that are going on between the staff and the Commission. He thanked all them for what they have done. He said he wants to nominate Director Bronzan for the CPRS award for his professionalism and needs the Commission to back him in this endeavor. He requested Ms. Homan to follow through and get the proper forms from CPRS. He also commented on the Youth Commission and was very impressed with them. Commissioner Jones also commented on his meeting with the Senior group with Mac Kaiser.
Chairperson Rodrigues then said that next year he will be taking a world wide trip and will be gone for the months of April, May, and June and asked the Commission for permission to be absent for those months.
REQUEST FOR FUTURE AGENDA ITEMS: None
ADJOURNMENT: Chairperson Ernie Rodrigues adjourned the meeting at 9:59 p.m.
Betty Jo Whincup
Minutes Recorder (Minutes recorded by Lisa Smith)
of Brentwood Park and Recreation Commission
35 Oak Street
Brentwood, CA 94513