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Meeting Date: August 12, 2003

Subject/Title: Approve recommendation for use of Balfour, Guthrie Park by Brentwood – Oakley Youth Football League

Submitted by: Craig Bronzan, Parks and Recreation Director
Submitted by: Ken De Silva, Park Services Manager

Approved by: John Stevenson, City Manager

Approve the recommendation by staff and the Park and Recreation Commission for Brentwood – Oakley Youth Football League use of Balfour, Guthrie Park.


The Brentwood - Oakley Youth Football League (BOYFL) is a new organization offering the sport of football to local youth and is entering their first year of operation. This new program is looking to fill the void of a less competitive youth football program, one in which there are no try outs and all kids make the team.

Representatives from BOYFL approached staff requesting a site to accommodate their needs this year for practices and games. This group would typically use a facility designed for football, like Liberty High School, but this year there is a shortage of such facilities in our area.

Staff contacted the Liberty Union High School District on behalf of BOYFL but has been told that no additional space is available this season as a result of the renovation work being done at Freedom High School. The Freedom situation has shifted all use to Liberty High School, leaving no ability for additional use. Additionally, Sunset Park currently does not have the capacity to add programs due to our current use of the facility.

After an extensive coordination effort with East Diablo Youth Soccer League (who also has expressed a desire to use Balfour, Guthrie Park) and our own City programs, we were able to make available the open space area at Balfour, Guthrie Park for BOYFL’s use.

Normally, granting use of facilities is an administrative action that is carried out by Department staff. However, in this case, requesting use of Balfour, Guthrie Park for football, when the park was not specifically designed for football, has caused staff concern. Staff is concerned about the impact this sport could have on the facility and surrounding neighborhood. Staff has discussed and documented the type of use and preparation that will be permitted should this use be allowed.

The Parks and Recreation Department has been working hard to find adequate space for the many City and other users in the community as we wait until Oak Meadow Park (10-acre site adjacent to R. Paul Krey Elementary School) and Sunset Park expansion are completed. However, due to the extraordinary circumstances of the limited use of other facilities, and the positive experience Brentwood PONY Baseball had this past year at Balfour, Guthrie Park, staff feels that this one season use of Balfour, Guthrie Park is doable under the following conditions:

• BOYFL will use the park for practice on Monday through Friday during the months of August through October
• BOYFL will host a total of four Saturday games, during the months of September and October and will observe all park rules and regulations during their use
• BOYFL will pay a security deposit to cover any damage that may occur
• BOYFL will pay the hourly light charge for use of fields and any costs incurred by City staff in support of the BOYFL program
• BOYFL will be responsible for policing its use and impact on the park
• BOYFL has received permission from the property owner to park excess cars on the adjacent property to the east should it be necessary and will monitor parking to keep excess parking in the surrounding neighborhood to a minimum
• City staff will inspect the impact of this use the morning after their use
• The use of Balfour, Guthrie Park is granted for BOYFL’s use this year only

BOYFL has requested permission to sell concessions and related products at the park, to help offset expenses of the program. Staff is recommending however, that this not be allowed as we do not allow for such sales and marketing on City facilities at any of our sites except at festivals in City Park and swim meets at the Aquatics Complex.

This year’s accommodation is staff’s attempt to help this new organization fill a need for our residents. As the City has contributed to the renovation of Liberty High School Football Field to an all-weather surface, scheduled to be completed in Spring 2004, it is our intent to direct future football use to high school facilities. Additionally, Heritage High School is scheduled to open with an all-weather surface in July 2005.

The Park and Recreation Commission considered this item at their June 26, 2003 Commission meeting and has recommended City Council approve this one season request.

No fiscal impact over and above regular park maintenance.


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