Parks & Rec. Commission Meeting - Short & Sweet
ANOTHER GOOD MEETING
The Costa Mesa Parks and Recreation Commission met Thursday night in a meeting that wasn't too long - 82 minutes - but was efficiently run and demonstrated, once again, that this group is willing to put in the homework to grasp the issues before them and discuss them intelligently.
PEDERSON LEADS A GOOD GROUP
Chairman Kim Pederson leads this group and his steady hand is evident. His eleven years on this commission show and he seems re-invigorated by the presence of so many dedicated, passionate and very smart women who join him on the dais. As mentioned in my earlier post, the agenda was short and very manageable.
Under Public Comments seven people spoke up - some kind of a record for this group when there was nothing controversial on the agenda.
Mark Arblaster, representing the Newport Mesa Soccer Club, and his friend and colleague, Jose Duarte, representing the Costa Mesa Youth Soccer League, kicked it off by offering a double-team of sorts. Each took the opportunity to introduce themselves and their respective organizations to the new commissioners. Arblaster's organization has around 300 members, is a Group 3 user. Duarte's organization is primarily on the Westside of Costa Mesa and is a Group 1 user of around 250 children from that part of town.
Bill McCarty expressed concern about the Newport Banning Land Trust - the folks who keep trying to develop that land - are involved in Costa Mesa activities and are using their brand on handouts.
Dan Goldmann, a long time resident, expressed concern for the damaged play area at TeWinkle Park. I think he was referring to the Angel's Playground, which coincidentally, is about to be shut down for three weeks while that very damage he mentioned is fixed - the replacement of the foam play areas. He also expressed concern that the City may miss the boat if they don't buy the Fairview Developmental Center property - the last remaining source of land for playing fields. And he expressed concern about the lack of facilities at Wilson Park - the restrooms have been re-purposed as storage and the tables and benches removed.
Ann, stepped up to provide balance to the issue of the Urban Mushers - the group that was criticized soundly at another recent meeting. She presented the positive side of the issue with the following slides.
Ms. Pattmus, a Costa Mesa resident, also spoke in favor of the Urban Mushers.
Martin King joined the two women in support of the program.
During Commissioner Comments the following issues were discussed:
Commissioner Leah Ersoylu thanked the staff for their help getting acclimated. She mentioned the joint meeting on Tuesday, March 28th, at which the Lions Park Project will be discussed by this commission as well as the City Council and Planning Commission. She also mentioned a meeting of the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust on April 13th that will address park equity.
Vice Chair Liz McNabb also thanked the staff and also mentioned the March 28th meeting. She mentioned the Costa Mesa Community Run on April 22nd and invited all to attend and participate. She mentioned the Master Plan of Open Space that was recently discussed by this commission in a study session, told us it's online and available to review in hard copy in the City Clerk's office. Comments are welcome and encouraged before this issue is voted on at the next meeting in April. She mentioned there is a segment on a possible second public pool at Tanager Park. She mentioned Mother's Day - May 14th and a program to donate women's items toiletries, etc., at La Vogue Salon 1525 Mesa Verde Drive East. She also mentioned Jean Forbath - recipient of the most recent Mayor's Award.
Chairman Kim Pederson acknowledged the talent with him on the dais. He mentioned the Chargers deal for a part of Jack Hammett Sports Complex. He mentioned the Costa Mesa United Golf Tournament on Monday, March 27th. He asked staff for some guidance on what kind of issues they can address and vote on regarding Fairview Park considering the impact of Measure AA.
Commissioner Krissie Bogner also thanked the staff. She thanked the Urban Musher folks for their report and asked them to leave contact information so she can get more information. She also asked staff to consider having other sports groups make presentations to the commissioners so they can become more familiar with their groups. She spoke about Wilson Park - she lives nearby - and the impact of the homeless folks that have invaded it. She mentioned a fundraiser at Newport Rib Company on Harbor Blvd. on Wednesday, March 29th all day at which a chunk of the proceeds will be donated to groups addressing homelessness in Costa Mesa.
Commissioner Arlis Reynolds also thanked the staff. She also mentioned a film to be shown in Irvine at the Irvine Ranch Water District - Before The Flood. She reminded us of the Orange County Model Engineers train rides at Fairview Park each month. She mentioned spring registration for recreational programs. She mentioned attending the Opening Day ceremonies for both Little League groups. She mentioned the Great American Write In. She also mentioned the Open Space Master Plan. She spoke of McCarty's concern about inappropriate branding at City events. She encouraged the Urban Mushers to be sensitive to folks who are not in love with big, fast dogs in Fairview Park.
During the consideration of the two items on the Consent Calendar, Reynolds pulled the Instructional Programs item to correct an mistake in the agenda report. Both items passed, 5-0.
LIAISONS AND ALTERNATES
During the part of the agenda where liaison representatives were selected the following happened:
Commissioner Krissie Bogner was selected as liaison to the Newport Mesa Unified School District. Vice Chair Liz McNabb was chosen the alternate.
Commissioner Arlis Reynolds was chosen as the liaison for the Skate Park and Chairman Kim Pederson was chosen as the alternate.
PARK MAINTENANCE REPORT
Interim Park Maintenance Manager Tom Coughlin provided a report on the damage to our urban forest by the recent storms. The slide shows the extent. He also addressed the plans to replace some picnic shelters at some of the parks. He also discussed the upcoming recommendations for revising the Streetscape and Median Landscaping policy.
RECREATION MANAGER'S REPORT
Recreation Manager Justin Martin provided his report of recent activities in his area of responsibility. Participation is up in most areas of recreation and it is expected to increase for the spring programs. He also mentioned the Open Space Master Plan and the interest in public comments before the commission votes on it in April. He affirmed the repair of the Angel's Playground, as mentioned earlier - from April 24th - May 13th. He also mentioned the March 28th Joint meeting. He said each commission and the council will be taking votes on issues... that was news to me. I'll have to double check the staff report and report back on that issue separately.
EARLY TO HOME...
The commission wrapped things up at 7:22 - it was nice to get home early. It was nice to see a few people in the chambers last night. All six of us enjoyed the meeting.