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|CITY COUNCIL AGENDA ITEM NO. 2
Meeting Date: December 9, 2008
Subject/Title: Receive and file the City of Brentwood Sports Philosophy
Prepared by: Sue Barry, Recreation Supervisor
Poldina Scherff, Recreation Manager
Submitted by: Craig Bronzan, Director of Parks & Recreation
Receive and file the City of Brentwood Sports Philosophy.
On November 20, 2008, the Park and Recreation Commission accepted the Parks and Recreation Department’s Sport Philosophy and approved recommending to City Council to receive and file the document.
The Parks and Recreation Department has been providing services to community members in the City of Brentwood and out-lying towns in some shape, form, or name since 1946. And, although providers and programs have under gone many changes over the years, the underlying commitment of service to our community has remained steadfast.
Years of cooperative efforts to enhance our community has created partnerships and alliances; many of which are still in existence. These collaborations coupled with a capacity for community vision has brought the department to where it is today. This evolutionary process has not always been easy, and at times, not popular with every constituent. Some of the factors that constituents were displeased with were the lack of facilities or not receiving their requested time and facility needs. None the less, the ultimate outcome has been for the benefit of the entire community.
Our community has undergone many changes in the last several years. We have gone from a small town farming community of 2,000 people, to one of the fastest growing Cities in California. Growth and new construction quickly brought us to over 50,000 residents, adding or expanding to fifty three (53) new parks and facilities. Recent downward economic trends across our nation have brought our City’s building boom to an abrupt standstill; shifting the focus from creating new, to preserving and managing our resources.
We now rely, more than ever, on the partnerships and collaborations established over the years to carry out our commitment of services to our community. Through collaborations with local agencies and joint use agreements (Agreement) with the Brentwood Union School District (BUSD) and Liberty Union High School District (LUHSD), the City has enhanced recreational opportunities with trails, sports fields and additional facilities. These enhancements coupled with the City’s current parks and facilities, allows for greater diversity, and more appropriate use. Utilizing each venue as its design intended, disperses the impact to City and shared parks, fields and facilities; thus allowing each site to operate to the fullest, and aid in appropriate site maintenance. For example, requests from tackle football for use of City facilities were redirected to the joint use high school stadium fields, which the City had provided money to convert to all-weather surfaces and are designed for football. Similarly, competitive swim teams wishing to swim 50 meters or long-course swim at Heritage High School’s 50 meter pool; a facility that was expanded in size as a result of the Agreement and City monetary contributions. Sharing these types of facilities allows a greater variety of appropriate use for a larger portion of our population, and magnifies the value of taxpayer dollars.
As stewards of our community, the City of Brentwood Parks and Recreation Department is charged with providing the best in services to all members of our community. To this point, staff works with a variety of agencies and sports groups to provide appropriate venues for activities and to amicably share facilities. An order of priority of use has been outlined in the Agreements between the City, BUSD, and LUHSD, which gives first priority to schools and second priority to the City at school facilities; and first priority to the City and second to schools at City facilities. Historically, youth activities have taken priority over adult programs and league games/meets/matches have priority of use over practices, scrimmages, and clinics.
As a means of recognizing and protecting the current youth sports groups who were serving the community, an “Affiliation Organization” document was drafted and approved by the City of Brentwood Park and Recreation Commission on June 26, 2003 and the City of Brentwood City Council, on August 12, 2003. This affiliation status allows existing youth sports groups who met specific criteria, a priority of use as third in priority after the City and school districts.
As our population has grown, so have the number of sports leagues and teams. These groups form for many reasons. Some are nationally recognized sports, who because of our small population could not previously encroach on another leagues turf, and some are formed by members of existing groups who “splinter-off” on their own. The increase in these use requests has impacted our facilities to the point that many of our facilities have requests that exceed the ability to provide use. Many of the newer leagues and teams can meet the current Affiliation Organization criteria, as well, and staff has been placed in the precarious position of choosing one group over the other.
The amount of staff time that is becoming necessary to “police” the various groups is becoming burdensome and pits everyone including staff against one another: new league versus old; large league versus smaller; recreational versus competitive. Staff believes it is more appropriate that we develop a way to manage facilities rather than choose one user over another.
Taking a step back, reviewing our commitment of service and benefit to our entire community while staying in conjunction with the City of Brentwood Council/Administrative Policy No. 90-3 (Wellness Policy) has led staff to develop a “Sports Philosophy”. We believe this philosophy embraces recreation as a fundamental need for people of all ages and is essential to the psychological, social, and physical well being of a person. We feel any organization that is in line with our beliefs and is able to meet the criteria as outlined should be eligible to participate in the “draft selection process” as defined in the “Sports Philosophy” document.
User groups who share our belief and philosophy and who meet the following factors may be eligible to participate in the draft selection process for a specific sport and/or season:
• Mission or philosophy statement of the organization is in line with the City’s “Sports Philosophy”.
• Numbers served in proportion to registered participants served who are Brentwood Residents (75% minimum).
• Ability to be self-supportive and self-administered and to furnish all necessary documents and pay facility costs.
User groups must also meet a specific application process and criteria, and have the ability to remit payment for all use requested as outlined in the “draft selection process”.
Staff believes this process is fair and equitable to all requesting facility use and will replace the existing Affiliation Organization status. The “Sports Philosophy” and “draft selection process” eliminates the perception of entitlement by giving qualified providers equal opportunity. Staff is no longer placed in the position of choosing one over another. The current services that are provided by the existing “Affiliated Organizations” are greatly appreciated by the community. The community continues to grow and with this growth so does the expectation for more choices and providers.
On September 25, 2008, the “Sports Philosophy” was scheduled to be heard as a discussion item at the City of Brentwood Park and Recreation Commission meeting. Staff requested the item be pulled from the agenda so they could hold a public meeting with the various users groups who would potentially be affected by the new philosophy prior to discussing the issues with the Commission.
On November 3, 2008, approximately 25 representatives of various youth baseball, softball, and swimming organizations where in attendance along with staff, and City of Brentwood Park and Recreation Commission sub-committee members Lanny Brown and Ernie Rodriguez. No soccer user groups were in attendance.
Several areas of concern where brought to light by the user groups; 1) concern regarding a 75% residency requirement, 2) the current ranking in priority of tournaments, 3) where an evaluation activity is placed in the ranking priority, 4) recreational use being given priority over competitive use causing user groups to change their mission statements for a higher ranking and exclude competitive participants, 5) the inappropriateness of the Heritage High School pool as a swim meet facility and who requested such facilities, and 6) the “swim draft” process in particular.
As a result of that meeting, staff addressed the user group concerns as follows and has amended the original “Sports Philosophy” document:
Concern #1 - The City of Brentwood City Council has supported giving a priority of service to its residents over non-residents. This model of service is mirrored by staff through the 75% minimum resident requirement. City run programs, on average, serve 81% of residents in their programs.
Combination of Concerns #2 and #4 - The intent was not to create an additional policing of contract packets, but to assure children had a variety of opportunities for participation. For this reason, staff has placed the priority on youth activities grouped collectively versus recreational or competitive. All attendees agreed that games, matches and meets should have a priority over practices and clinics. Staff believes this ranking provides equal opportunity to all youth activity providers, regardless of the level of skill.
Concern # 3 - Staff has identified the term “evaluation” in the Definitions section of the “Sport Philosophy” document and understands this process is important to fairly place players on teams. For this reason an “evaluation activity” would be drafted along with games, matches and meets.
Concern # 5 - As a direct result of the” Center for Community Opinion Public Survey Questionnaire 2000” where the community ranked swim centers/swimming pools as their priority for “recreation facilities that are not currently available in Brentwood that you would like provided to better meet community needs” and via the Agreement with LUHSD, the City through monetary contributions, expanded the size of the Heritage High School pool. Additionally, the City waived primary use of Heritage as a “teaching facility” limiting the amount of shallow water to the minimum code requirement, thus allowing swim teams more appropriate water levels for practice and competition. The size increase also allowed long-course swimmers to utilize a 50 meter facility. In creating an expanded center for the swim teams, the City could in turn utilize the Brentwood Family Aquatic Center as it was originally intended; a family community pool for recreational swim, lap swim facility and most importantly, as a swim lesson center.
Concern # 6 - Staff is aware of the different needs of our user groups and has made provisions for the uniqueness of each sport as they draft time as represented in the Selection or Draft Process section of the “Sports Philosophy “ “Each choice represents a pre-determined amount of times and locations. This determination is based on current availability. Availability information and rules of the draft will be given to the draftees prior to the draft date.” This statement gives staff the flexibility to adjust time allotments and locations accordingly for each draft.
On November 20, 2008, the Park and Recreation Commission made minor changes to the document following additional public comment, and directed staff to review the sports philosophy every two (2) years to assure its effectiveness. The Park and Recreation Commission accepted the Parks and Recreation Department’s Sport Philosophy and approved recommending to City Council to receive and file the document.
There is no fiscal impact for the Sports Philosophy.
Sports Philosophy ~
The City of Brentwood embraces the philosophy that recreation is a fundamental need for people of all ages and is essential to the psychological, social and physical well being of a person.
We believe recreation includes all of those activities in which an individual chooses to participate during their leisure time and embrace a sports culture where participants have fun, look forward to the play of the game, and continue to participate throughout their lifetime.
We also believe the community is better served when focus is placed on introductory, developmental, or recreational programs which allow the participant to engage in a broader “sample” of experiences and guarantee each player a right to play. This is in opposition to a culture where all recreation resources flow to an elite level and participation is determined by ability and performance. That is not to say that participation at a higher level does not have value.
Definitions - For the purpose of this document, unless otherwise apparent from the context, certain words and phrases used are defined as the following:
“Activity” is defined as a specified form of action in the area of recreation. An Activity may include, but is not limited to, a class, program, sports league, special event, training, or meeting.
“Draft” is defined as selecting from a group of available times or locations for a specific time and/or location.
“Evaluation” is defined as a means of accessing skill level.
“Game” is defined as performing a sport or other competitive activity, typically played as part of a customary season in an organized league.
“Meet” is defined as a group of competitors coming together in a series of contests whose combined scores determine the winner.
“Parent” is defined as mother, father, legal guardian, grandparent, aunt, uncle, brother, sister or anyone representing that child at an event.
“Participant” is defined as one who takes part in an activity or program.
“Practice” is defined as performing an exercise or action repeatedly to acquire or improve a skill.
“Scrimmage” is defined as a practice session game, the results of which are not considered as part of a league record.
“Serpentine draft” is defined as a draft method that snakes from left to right for the first round of selections, then right to left for second round of selections, and so on until all available slots are full or requests have been granted.
“Spectator” is defined as an observer or on-looker of an activity.
“Tournament” is defined as a contest composed of a series of elimination games. Tournament play typically occurs at the conclusion of the customary season play for Recreational Leagues and may be the sole or primary customary season for Competitive Leagues.
“Volunteer” is defined as an individual, coach, manager, team parent, umpire, referee, teacher, or other official who is giving their time and expertise, and acting in a non-paid capacity.
Order of Priority of Use ~ The following is the order of priority from first to last of use at City owned or City facilitated joint use locations as outlined in the joint use agreements between the City and the Brentwood Union School District (BUSD)and Liberty Union High School District (LUHSD):
2. BUSD and LUHSD (through joint use agreements)
3. Youth game, match, meet or evaluation
4. Youth tournament
5. Youth practice, scrimmage or clinic
6. Adult game, match, meet or evaluation
7. Adult tournament
8. Adult practice, scrimmage or clinic
9. General public resident
10. General public non-resident
When deciding whether to grant a user group draft participation status, applicants must meet the following factors:
• Mission or philosophy statement of the organization is in line with the City’s Sports Philosophy.
• Numbers served in proportion to registered participants served who are from Brentwood Residents (75% minimum).
• Ability to be self-supportive and self-administered and to furnish all necessary documents and pay facility costs.
Draft Selection Participation Application Process and Criteria ~ Release of City and/or joint use facilities for use request applications will be made available in six (6) month increments as indicated in the Release Timetable. Usage requests will only be granted according to the designated timetable of release for a particular facility.
User groups wishing to participate in the selection process for use of City and/or joint use facilities must submit the following information collectively in packet format to the Recreation Manager or their designee at the City of Brentwood Parks and Recreation Department 730 Third Street, Brentwood, CA 94513 following the timetable schedule as listed below:
Release Timetable ~
Last Friday in October of the current year for use in January through June of the following year. Draft will be held the first Thursday in December.
Last Friday in April for use in July through December. Draft will be held the last Thursday in May.
Last Friday in December for use in April through September. Draft will be held the first Thursday in February.
Last Friday in June for use in October of the current year through March of the following year. Draft will be held the first Thursday of August.
Process and Criteria for the First Draft Selection Participation of the Season ~ User groups participating in their first or only draft of the season must complete a Facility Use Request application, along with the following information attached as a complete packet;
Name an individual as the “designee” and an alternate to represent the organization in matters related to draft selection participation. An official letter or copy of an organization agenda and minutes granting approval must be attached to the packet if applicable.
Supply a copy of a mission or philosophy statement and purpose of the organization or group.
Total number of participants served by the user group including the percentage of Brentwood residents (75% minimum). Attach a copy of official registration information from the previous season. If this is the organizations first season, you may attach a statement to that effect and must submit proof by the Wednesday before the draft occurs as stated in the applicable Release Timetable.
Agree to abide by the applicable City of Brentwood Activity Codes of Conduct. This document requires the signature of the designated representative of the organization or group.
The City of Brentwood Parks and Recreation Department supports coaches training programs for all organized youth sports. User groups must attach documentation indicating their participation in a nationally recognized coaching certification program.
Deadline for draft participation packet submission is 5 p.m. on the applicable day listed from the Release Timetable, addressed to the Recreation Manager or designee at the City of Brentwood Parks and Recreation Department at 730 Third St. Brentwood, CA 94513. Post-marked packets or faxed copies will not be accepted.
All packets submitted will be reviewed to determine eligibility. Incomplete packets will not be considered. Applicants submitting incomplete packets will be notified by email and regular mail.
Eligible applicants will be notified by email and regular mail regarding their draft participation status. All draft selection participants are final.
Process and Criteria for the Second Draft Selection Participation of the Season ~ User groups participating in their second draft of the year must complete a Facility Use Request application, along with the following information attached as a complete packet;
Name an individual as the “designee” and an alternate to represent the user group in matters related to draft selection participation. An official letter or copy of an organization agenda and minutes granting approval must be attached to the packet, if applicable.
Status Verification form.
Selection or Draft Process ~ Once a user group has been approved to participate in the selection process; their designee shall participate in the draft selection. Each designee will randomly draw a number based on the total number of Draft Participants granted. This number shall represent the order of the draft. Each choice represents a pre-determined amount of times and locations. This determination is based on current availability. Availability information and rules of the draft will be given to the draftees prior to the draft date. This information will also be reviewed prior to the draw for numbers. The draft order is followed until all available time periods are selected or each draft participant has met their needs. Prior draft allotments are not pertinent to the current time frame, as availability may fluctuate. The draft style used shall be a “serpentine draft”.
Fees and Charges ~ Prior to participating in the selection process, user groups will be required to pay all applicable fees and deposits. The application fee is non-refundable. Once the draft has occurred, a contract will be created reflecting the current fees for use requested. Billing will occur on a quarterly basis. User groups shall remit payment according to current policies, fees and charges.
City of Brentwood City Council
150 City Park Way
Brentwood, CA 94513
Fax (925) 516-5441