PARKS, RECREATION, AND CONSERVATION BOARD MINUTES
Date: April 25, 2017
Attendance: Present: Chair Rich Brooks, Mary Mogerly, Village Council Liaison Ramon Hache, David Sayles, William Riker, Michael Winogard, Lou Lembo
Absent: BOE Liaison Jim Morgan, Parker Weil
Also Present: Deputy Director Nancy Bigos
Public Comment: None
Director’s Report: March 2017, No questions
Approval of Minutes: March 2017 Approved, no changes
90’ Diamond Study: N. Bigos distributed the results of the 90 foot Baseball Diamond Study prepared by the Engineering Department. The study encompasses all available locales and includes whether the template for the diamond would fit into the confines of the area, any existing fields and environmental constraints, parking availability and the benefits and disadvantages for each prospective site.
A discussion concerning the placement of the baseball diamond ensued. The pros and cons for each location were discussed; Schedler and Maple Park were credited as having the best attributes for placement of the diamond.
M. Winogard proposed moving the baseball diamond to Maple Park, putting the two small fields together and converting it to grass. Many agreed they would like to see a stadium quality field. R. Brooks stated he would like to see how Maple Field would be configured.
It was mentioned that as the children get older, the teams get smaller. D. Sayles agreed that sports participation is down a little. R. Brooks acknowledged that and responded he would like a population configuration – a projection of the groups’ statistically.
Green Acres Diversion Update – There aren’t any new developments.
Parks Habernickel Park and Schedler Property – Dog Leash Law
The PRC Board was asked to review the ordinance that concern dogs, on and off leash in the Village parks. There have been incidents at Habernickel Park and Schedler Property, the Village Manager would like the situation discussed and give recommendations.
The Village Council had passed on ordinance (212-29) which prohibits dogs from certain parks as follows: Citizens Park, Graydon Park, Maple Park, Pleasant Park, Twinney Pond Park, Van Neste Park and Veteran’s Park.
Habernickel Park and Schedler Property are not included in Ordinance 212-29. The parks were not established at the time this ordinance was drafted and put into effect. Many people have been bringing their dogs to Habernickel Park and Schedler Property and letting them run off leash. There isn’t any signage stating that dogs are not allowed in the parks, nor any sign indicating that all dogs must be leashed. The residents have been doing this for quite some time.
M. Mogerley stated that she has seen many leashed dogs in Maple Park and feels that leashed dogs should be allowed in all parks. Many of the members agreed leashed dogs should be allowed in the parks, there isn’t anywhere in the Village for the residents to bring their dogs. When the discussion ensued, it was proposed the ordinance should be uniform and have dogs leashed at all times throughout the Village, not just in the parks. It was also mentioned the Board should consider allowing dogs off leash early morning hours at Habernickel Park. It was also mentioned that other town’s policies should be reviewed.
2017 Graydon Pool Preseason
T. Cronin and N. Bigos met with H. Mailander and M. Sedon, the Ad Hoc Committee leaders. Graydon Pool has met their requirements for marketing publications and outreach expectations with approval.
Parks and Recreation sent out brochures last year outlining Graydon Pool’s amenities and offerings, as well as the fee schedule and hours of operation for the pool and tennis. The brochure also gives an overview of the tennis court locations and their rules and regulations. Recreation also set up a table at the Daffodil Festival/Earth Day Fair to sell badges and answer any questions about the program.
All of the Graydon Pool staff are trained and drilled in Waterfront Safety for ponds and lakes. The rescues and approaches are more sophisticated for dark water facilities than cement pools. They are trained and drilled every day. As a result they are mature, well trained and proficient. The staff is also trained in CPR, AED and Blood borne Pathogen. In fact, the lifeguards are so well trained, when they competed in the N.J. Pool Manager’s Association competition they were first two years in a row. They are so skilled and adept they were asked not to compete again so others might have a chance at winning the competition.
New Business Skateboard Park
The origin of the Skateboard Park came about because skateboarders were literally everywhere in the Village. The Ridgewood Police approached Recreation for help and the Skateboard Park was established.
The Ridgewood Youth Council contributed $5,000.00 to develop a park for the skateboarders to socialize near places they can obtain food and beverage.
After researching the options it was decided to have temporary facilities in the hockey rink. It is open April 1 – November 1, it is a confined space but they are happy to have the site and it gets an extraordinary amount of use.
Recreation offers programs for skateboarding; they are geared according to age and size. The skateboarders wear their protection (helmets, pads) when using the facilities. Both sessions are full.
Staff monitor and discipline the Skateboard Park. N. Bigos said that enforcement is becoming a concern, to what degree do you enforce? It was decided at the outset that there was to be no mixed use of bikes, scooters, rollerskates, and rollerblades with the skateboards at the facilities.
The kids approached N.Bigos regarding the “mixed Use” rule. They are respectful and organized in asking “why can’t we do this?” N. Bigos received Mahwah’s rules and regulations plus nine more from them. She is reaching out to the insurance carrier regarding the “mixed use” of the Skateboard Park. R. Brooks said the site is not big enough to have all types together. It is a matter of moving the issue to a higher level, needing more space and money. Also, Ridgewood Roller Hockey has been asking for more space.
M. Winogard stated we should have them come to a meeting with a solution and ideas for fund raising.
R. Brooks said it would have to be investigated to find alternate locations. Several sites were mentioned: the Recycling Yard, behind the movie theatre, Maple and the tennis court facility on Glen Ave.
Liaison Reports Village Council – R. Hache
The Central Business District needs a facelift. The Village Council voted to give the needed funding ((approximately $20,000.00) to Project Pride to obtain new decorations to update the CBD. Project Pride decided they would like LED snowflakes to replace the old and tired kissing ball decorations for the Christmas season. For spring and summer they will put up seasonal flags. The Council also decided to give Project Pride $33,000.00 for plantings to further enhance the CBD.
The CBD website is being done by a Ridgewood High School student. He has been doing the website free of charge; he feels it would be a great addition to his resume.
R. Hache remarked that the website is amazing, very clean and tasteful with beautiful graphic arts. The Council has allotted an additional $30,000.00 to hire a professional firm to monitor community events, restaurants and a link for parking.
R. Hache said that the Council would like to designate 2 – 21/2 % taxes to the Village for co-capital project, downtown revitalization. They have discussed bringing in a valet service at the bus station – have business’ validate the parking tickets when the visitors to the Central Business District patronize their store or restaurant. The valet service does not require a secure area.
There were two meetings to discuss the redesign of the parking garage with a new firm, Pike Company. The previous firm, Desmond was asking for an additional $100,000.00 and the Council was apprised by the Pike Company that all the plans presented by Desmond were from precasters. In short, Desmond is a dishonest company; they misrepresented the facts, and took the Village’s money under false pretenses.
After discussing the garage with Pike the retail space idea was scrapped. There will be all glass stairwells, which will be illuminated. The Pike Company is less expensive and much faster, they estimate eight months to finish. Apparently Pike Company wants to build the Hudson Street garage in Ridgewood so they may enter the N.J. market.
Board of Ed - J. Morgan
Open Space Committee - M. Mogerley
- Bergen County Master Plan
There are to be 3 public hearings. N. Bigos will be attending the May 10 meeting in Wyckoff. The next meetings will be on the 9th in Hackensack and then the 11th at the Bergen County College in the Meadowlands.
The Bergen County Parks Director has a lot of ideas; he did a lot for Van Saun Park. The Ridgewood Duck Pond is horrendous and this may be the forum to give us a voice and find out about maintenance and funds needed to clean and update the Duck Pond.
Fields Committee – R. Hache/ R. Brooks
There is a conflict with Ridgewood High School Varsity, Ridgewood Hoops and a new group, Ridgewood Community School basketball over lost gym time. There is a question as to why this group was formed when the other already exists; there also remains a concern with non-residents using BOE facilities. Tim Daly (Hoops) ran this program until
last year and then Mike Troy asked to run a program. BOE gave him permission but Hoops now say they were still going to be running the program. This situation is still being discussed if it is appropriate to have the High School coach to have a team. However, there is a resolution being drafted.
There is also a problem with the Musketeers La crosse and the Chix with Stix clinic.
When Chix with Stix began marketing, it became apparent it had become a camp. Therefore Chix with Stix was cancelled.
All certifications and insurance has been completed and the Field Schedule is full.
. Shade Tree Commission – T. Cronin
The State Forestry gave the Shade Tree Commission 500 whips and they were planted on the Parks Department grounds.
M. Sedon filed and application for a $20,000.00 grant.
Community Center Advisory Board
. No report
Covered earlier in minutes
Conservancy for Ridgewood Public Lands - N. Bigos
The Daffodil Festival, highlighting “Water Conservation - Rain to the Drain” was a success. The event went smoothly and the residents were happy and enjoyed themselves thoroughly.
Ridgewood Arts Council - L. Lembo
The Ridgewood High School Art Department dropped off 8 pieces art to the Community Center.
They also held a scavenger hunt along with a movie, a Virtual Art Gallery. It was a phenomenal job and success.
Ridgewood Environmental Advisory Council
REAC was one of the sponsors of the Daffodil Festival/Earth Day celebration. They gave away trees to any of the attendees who wanted them.
Next Meeting Tuesday, May 23, 2017 at the Stable, 7:30 pm
Adjournment 9:30 PM