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02-26-2009 PARKS AND RECREATION ADVISORY BOARD MEETING February 26, 2009 1 The Parks and Recreation Advisory Board Meeting was held on February 26, 2009, at the WIA 2 Building at 7.00 p.m., 340 N Reymond Street, Las Cruces,New Mexico 3 4 PARKS & RECREATION ADVISORY BOARDMEMBERS PRESENT: 5 Mr Isaac Chavez, Ms. Alice Ward, Mr Frank Carnl, Ms. Aphrus 6 Travers, and Mr Eli Guzman 7 8 MEMBERS ABSENT: Mr Gerald Saige and Mr Kirk Clifton 9 10 OTHER STAFF PRESENT: 11 Ms. Lon Grumet, Public Services Director, Mr Mark Johnston, 12 Parks Administrator, Mr James Rivera, Recreation Administrator, 13 Mr Christopher Micklevitz, Parks, and Ms. Barbara Gomez, 14 Recreation Section/Recording Secretary 15 16 Dog Parkers: Mr Mike Oettmger, Ms. Tern-Lyn Mick, Ms. Valerie Heredia, 17 Ms. Megan Griffiths, Ms. Kirsten McIntrye, Ms.Irene Fairchild, 18 Mr Steve Fairchild, Mr Chris Ashley, Mr Tom Nind, Mr Kevin 19 Armstrong, Mr Rodd Schmidt, Ms. Julie Schmidt, Ms. Gloria 20 Schmidt, Mr David Schmidt, Ms. Cheryl Matchett, Ms. Kathleen 21 Huttlmg, Ms. Mary Murin, Mr Aaron Moreno, Ms. Jessica 22 Maihand, Mr Josh Flure, Mr Greg Gumtory, Ms. Joy Studley, Mr 23 Greg Studley, Mr Raymond Nejeres, Mr Kenneth Smith 24 25 Las Esperanzas. Ms. Lorne Meeks, Mr David Chavez, Mr Bobbie Hutson, Ms. 26 Wilma Hutson, Ms. Deborah LeCupe, Ms. Stella Melendrez, 27 28 Others Present: Ms. Alice Cox/ASA BBB, Ms. Laura Jacobson, Mr Blus Molina, 29 Mr Eric Rel, Mr W Ron Camunez, Ms. Susie Titus, Mr Manny 30 Hernandez/Dona Ana County ACU, Ms. Shilo Smith, Mr Robert 31 Ogas/Ballfield Ad Hoc 32 33 Meeting was called to order at 7.05 pm. 34 35 I. Introductions—Board Members introduced themselves and stated the district they represent. 36 37 II. Approval of Minutes—Ms. Ward made a motion to approve the minutes from the January 38 27, 2009, meeting. Mr Carril seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0 Ms. Travers abstained 39 from voting, this is her first meeting. Mr Guzman had not yet arrived. 40 41 Ms. Alice Ward voted YES 42 Mr Isaac Chavez voted YES 43 Mr Frank Carnl voted YES 44 1 1 III. New Business 2 3 A. AD HOC Committee Recommendations: 4 5 Mr Mark Johnston introduced Mr Robert Ogas the Ad Hoc Committee Chair He said that the 6 Board had 15 meetings in 5 months on a volunteer basis, and asked Mr Ogas to address the 7 Board. 8 9 Mr Ogas passed out a copy of the recommendations from the Ad Hoc Committee He informed 10 the board that youth activities should not be required to pay He said the Committee's 11 recommendation is to add a 1/8%tax to the GRT dedicated to be used for facilities. 12 13 Mr Ogas stated that the Committee does not want fees charged to activities for under 18 years 14 old. He said that they based their comparison to Farmington. He said that Farmington has the 15 same funding as Las Cruces with one exception that Farmington Parks and Recreation receive 16 Lodger's Tax. 17 18 Mr Ogas stated that we have many events where out of town teams are invited to participate and 19 they are not charged a fee, he said the Committee didn't find this fair 20 21 Ms. Ward asked if Park Ranger's would enforce rules of improper field use. Mr Johnston 22 responded to her concerns. He said that this has to be enforced because our facilities cannot take 23 anymore wear He said that fields in Las Cruces accommodate about 1200 games per field 24 whereas the national average is 250 games per field. 25 26 Mr Caml commended the Ad Hoc Committee for their time and recommendations. He stated 27 that maintenance is needed at the Hardy Fields, he said it is in very poor condition, the water 28 fountains are rusted, fencing is damaged and dangerous and he passed out photos that he wants 29 Mr Johnston to show to City Council. 30 31 Mr Ogas answered that this is what happens when fields are over-used and we must do 32 something about this now He sated that maybe trying to get Lodgers Taxes to pay for repairs. 33 He asked that the City ask the Las Cruces Public Schools what happened to the plan for 3 fields 34 that land had been allocated for In 2000 a Bond Issue was passed by voters for one big ball park 35 and two smaller ones be built and to-date no fields has been constructed and it hasn't been 36 mentioned. He asked that the City be persistent with the schools find out what happened. 37 38 Mr Tom Nind stated that he has visited several cities and the concession profits are given back 39 to improve facilities. Mr Johnston said that we have some concession profits going back to 40 programs and some that don't give anything back. 41 42 Ms. Alice Cox said if a tax is passed everyone will be helped. She said that we need some long 43 term plan. She stated if money is received to build facilities from the State we still need a long 44 term plan to keep up these facilities. 45 46 Mr Johnston asked that after reviewing the recommendations if the Board was ready for a vote. 2 I Mr Carril moved to approve the recommendations as written. Ms. Ward seconded the motion. 2 Motion passed 5-0 3 4 Ms. Alice Ward voted YES Mr Isaac Chavez voted YES 5 Mr Eli Guzman voted YES Mr Frank Carril voted YES 6 Ms. Aphrus Travers voted YES 7 8 B. Dog Park Rules -Action 9 10 Mr Mark Johnston informed the Board that he has met with the Dog Park Users Group He said 11 that money is very tight and the City is working with $150,000 received from legislative monies. 12 The location chosen is the area behind Meerscheidt. The park is currently under construction 13 and will be strictly a dog park. Hermosa Heights Park is a multi-use area currently being used as 14 a dog park The park will be open from 6 00 a.m. to dusk. No puppies under four months old 15 will be allowed in the park. 16 17 The public was allowed to speak at this time 18 19 Ms. Terri-Lyn Mick asked who will be there to enforce the rules. She said that there are many 20 issues at the current dog park and asked if it the old park would remain open also Mr Johnston 21 answered that the old dog park will not remain open but dog obedience classes will still be held 22 there He stated that no patrols will be made at the dog park but Codes Enforcement and Animal 23 Control will be encouraged to check the park. 24 25 Mr Raymond Nejeres stated that he is very pleased that a dog park is being constructed. But, he 26 said most dog parks don't close at dusk because in the summer it is too hot to take dogs to the 27 park before dusk. 28 29 Mr Johnston answered that the closure will occur at dusk because of funding no lights are going 30 to be installed. 31 32 Mr Chavez stated that funding is being used for the plans in place now and we have to do 33 without lights for now 34 35 Ms. Julie Schmidt stated that some dogs have aggressive behavior sometimes they are dust 36 playing but what will be done to address dogs with this behavior 37 38 Mr Chavez stated that all parties involved should agree on what behavior is acceptable. 39 40 Mr Johnston said that there will be fencing put in place, one area will be for large dogs, an area 41 will be allocated for small dogs and the third area will be an agility area. 42 43 Mr Aaron Moreno said the safety and crime at night will be reduced by having lighting installed. 44 45 Ms. Susie Titus said that kennel cough is also a concern and dogs should have the shots before 46 they can utilize the park, shots are inexpensive around $12 a shot. 3 1 2 Ms. Laura Johnson asked that the rule that reads only balls will be allowed in the park be 3 changed because not all dogs like to play with balls. 4 5 Mr Kevin Armstrong said that he also objects to the times the park would be open. He said 6 spotlights could be installed just in the walkway lots and maybe the City could look into that 7 type of lighting instead of expensive lighting. He said that the people utilizing the park will have 8 to be the park leaders dust as they have been at the old park. He said many issues will need to be 9 addressed, such as people using the park for exercise. He stated that he has been on the website 10 to address some issues with the Dog Park Coalition and the web site has not been updated they 11 have a contact person with an Arizona phone number on it. 12 13 Ms. Mary Mirren said that small dogs should not be kept from the big dog area and big dogs 14 should not be kept out of the small dog area, because of their size does not mean they can't 15 interact. 16 17 Ms. Kirstin McIntrye said older dogs also need a calmer area. 18 19 Mr Johnston said that dog owners should ask if their dogs can play in certain areas. He said 20 communication might solve some of these issues. 21 22 Ms Valerie Nedya said that all dogs using the park should be spayed or neutered, and asked if it 23 is possible to enforce this. 24 25 Ms. Rene Wasawrtz from the Dog Park Coalition stated that maybe the rule pertaining to balls 26 only should be changed to one favorite toy and a special needs area should be named instead of 27 big dog or small dog area. She said that fundraising should be looked at for funds for lighting. 28 29 Mr Steve Fairchild said that coin slots should be looked at for lighting. 30 31 Mr Guzman said that he has a Husky with aggressive behavior and that if you already know 32 your dog has this behavior that maybe you shouldn't even be taking them to the Dog Park. 33 34 Ms. Travers said that the rule for children under 12 should be modified to read 35 accompanied/supervised by an adult. She said that bullet number five on licensing; should say 36 the dog must have proof of vaccinations on a tag with collar at all times. She said she agrees that 37 the rule that favorite toys should not be brought to the park should be struck out. 38 39 Mr Johnston stated that more often than not at the dog parks researched for the rules, toys were 40 not allowed. 41 42 Ms. Laura Jacobson said that if people shouldn't take toys that they know their dog will get 43 aggressive with. 44 45 Mr Chavez asked about park hours and other events in that area. 46 4 I Mr Johnston said that there are events on rare occasions that may affect parking like the Whole 2 Enchilada. The question was asked if the Police Department could help with money for lighting 3 since they will be utilizing it. 4 5 Ms. Lon Grumet answered that the Police Department will be using the park after hours for their 6 canine training and said that they train in the dark because the dogs are used for night patrol. 7 8 Mr Johnston said that signage will be posted with no smoking or drinking at the park after being 9 asked to do so 10 11 Mr Micklevitz who researched rules in other communities said that smaller parks do not allow 12 anything in the park area, including toys. 13 14 Ms. Ward motioned to pass Dog Park Rules with changes and that the rules be brought back to 15 the Board for reconsideration six months after the Dog Park opens. 16 17 Mr Guzman seconded the motion. Motion passed 5-0 18 19 Ms. Alice Ward voted YES Mr Isaac Chavez voted YES 20 Mr Eli Guzman voted YES Mr Frank Carril voted YES 21 Ms. Aphrus Travers voted YES 22 23 C. Community Garden Naming—Action 24 25 Mr David Chavez, President of the Las Esperanzas addressed the Board. He said that this 26 project started 6 years ago with Representative Antonio Lujan getting legislative funding in 27 amount of$50,000 He stated that they have again come before the Board to ask that the Board 28 support their request to name the garden after Representative Lujan for all he has done to get the 29 garden constructed. 30 31 Ms. Willa Hutson, Las Esperanzas Committee Member, spoke to the Board and said that the 32 garden is bringing the community together 33 34 Mr Ron Camunez, told the Board that he is a lifelong resident and this is not a new concept. He 35 said he is very supportive but he objects to naming anything after a living person. He said that 36 Senator Mary Jane Garcia has done a lot for the community and nothing has been named after 37 her Mr Camunez said that an example in El Paso is that a school was named after a Board 38 Member and now the person is serving time in jail and they are scrambling to figure out what to 39 do about it now 40 41 Mr Johnston informed the Board that there are no rules on naming facilities after a living person. 42 43 Ms. Grumet said that the garden sits on property near where the old Lucero School was at; and 44 that might be considered for the name since there is some old history on the school and Lucero 45 family 46 5 I Ms. Laurie Meeks, Las Esperanzas Committee Member, stated that the Board still feels very 2 strongly about naming this garden after Rep Lujan and that this project would probably not exist 3 if not for him and this is still their first choice for a name for the community garden. 4 5 Mr Caml stated that he doesn't support naming facilities after politicians. 6 7 Ms. Ward suggested that the garden not be named after Mr Lujan but putting a plaque in the 8 garden giving him recognition for all he did to make the construction of the garden possible 9 10 The Esperanza's Group asked the Board to table the issue one more time so that they can go 11 back to their committee members and propose the suggestions given. 12 13 Mr Chavez asked Mr Johnston if there is still enough time to table this issue until the March 14 meeting. 15 16 Mr Johnston said that State of New Mexico permitting will need to occur in May, so this item 17 could come back to the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board in March so that the 18 recommendation can be presented to City Council in April. 19 20 Mr Chavez said that he thought that the Lucero idea Ms. Grumet proposed was a good one or 21 possibly naming it the Garden of Hope 22 23 Mr Camll moved to table the issue until the March meeting. Ms. Travers seconded the motion. 24 Motion passed 5-0 25 26 Ms. Alice Ward voted YES Mr Isaac Chavez voted YES 27 Mr Eli Guzman voted YES Mr Frank Carril voted YES 28 Ms. Aphrus Travers voted YES 29 30 Item D. Mesquite Neighborhood Community Garden Rules 31 32 Mr Johnston asked the Board for recommendations on the Community Gardening Guidelines 33 drafted by the Las Esperanzas Committee He stated that no vegetation planted at the garden 34 will be sold. 35 36 Ms. Travers moved to adopt the guidelines as presented. Mr Guzman seconded the motion. 37 38 Ms. Alice Ward voted YES Mr Isaac Chavez voted YES 39 Mr Eli Guzman voted YES Mr Frank Caml voted YES 40 Ms. Aphrus Travers voted YES 41 42 Item E. Recreation Section's Fee and Charges—Informational 43 44 Mr James Rivera announced to the Board that this would be his last meeting; he is officially 45 retiring. 46 6 I He told the Board that a copy of the Fees and Charges Policy was included in the Board packet. 2 He informed them that these fees will be taken to the public in the form of meetings. The 3 meeting times, dates and locations will be publicized. 4 5 Board Members had some changes. 6 7 Ms. Ward stated that there were inconsistencies on pages 1 and 11 She stated there should be a 8 capacity stated during free swim. 9 10 Mr Carril asked where fees go Mr Rivera answered that they go to the General Fund. 11 12 Ms. Grumet stated that fees don't go directly to any one area, they all go to the General Fund, 13 whether it is the Library collecting fees on overdue books, etc. 14 15 Mr Chavez said that an amount should be added for service charge on returned checks on page 16 3 He said there are other inconsistencies that need to be corrected on pages 3 and 6 17 18 IV Reports 19 20 The Board had no questions or concerns on reports. 21 22 ADJOURNMENT 23 24 With no further business, Mr Chavez adjourned the February 26, 2009, meeting at 9 38 25 pm 26 27 28 30 Barbara Gomez, Recording 67ecretary Isaac Chavez, Vice-Chair P&R Board 31 32 7