Parks, Recreation and Convervation Board Minutes 20170325

Date:   March 25, 2017
Attendance: Present:  Chair Rich Brooks, Mary Mogerly, Village Council Liaison Ramon Hache, David Sayles, William Riker, Michael Winogard
 Absent: BOE Liaison Jim Morgan, Parker Weil, Lou Lembo
Also Present: Director Tim Cronin and Deputy Director Nancy Bigos, Lisa Betancourt
Public Comment: WGR – Lisa Betancourt, this is covered with Habernickel Park
Director’s Report: February 2017, No questions
Correspondence: None
Approval of Minutes: January, February 2017 were approved, no questions
New Member Appts: Introduction given by Rich Brooks, of an overview of PRC Board as ambassadors to professional staff and advocates for parks, recreation and conservation within the Village Community                 
Vice Chair Appt:  David Sayles was appointed Vice Chair
Reorganization In 2018 there will be a Director, Parks Assistant Superintendent, Recreation Assistant Superintendent with the elimination of the Deputy Director title.  There are 12 committees to be covered, in addition to the job duties for each title.  The coverage will be split between the three. 
                                   T. Cronin reported that interviews are concluded for Parks Assistant Superintendent, it has been narrowed down to two applicants. They have varied expertise and each has municipal experience, however neither have all of the qualifications required. This position requires a commercial pesticide license and aquatic experience as supervision must be at Graydon Pool, 7 days a week and 15 weeks a year.  Another requirement is an Arborist Certificate, which will take a year to acquire if not already in possession of one.  Parks and Recreation is waiting for budget approval (late April, early May) before making the final decision and offering the position to the chosen applicant. 
Large Special Event There is a need to develop a special event policy for large groups.  There was a
Park Use – Policy discussion about the size of groups, frequency, and the importance to regulate and categorize these groups and have them provide documents.  The need for a policy for private use in a public space is important. This is a work in progress between various Village departments. 
                                   There are so many events and they are growing in size and number.  Many of the events are scheduled back to back.  Any group over 200 will require an assembly permit and if they want to serve alcohol, the State of NJ is involved.  The State requires an applicant apply with Alcohol Beverage Control Commission and wait weeks to receive the approval.  The Village of Ridgewood has an internal form, which is a checklist that is circulated to all departments to give them needed information for each event and requires a signature certifying they have received it.
 The safety of our residents is paramount.  That being said, there are other matters that also need to be considered.
• The need to cover costs
• Manpower
• Maintenance – many leave without doing so, will need to consider a deposit
Leisure time has become a sophisticated business.  Staff will have to come to terms with this and have solid policy in place.
Green Acres Diversion Update – T. Cronin advised that the Village has located a piece of property they would like to purchase.  The location is confidential and administration is moving forward and hopes to have an answer by the end of the month.  The funds are being encumbered for the purchase.
Parks Maple Park – Turf Field Update – New Quote
The turf surface is hardening so a deep core cleaning treatment was done.  The GMAX number is now 183 which is acceptable. The quote to replace the turf was $583,000.00; the price now stands at $408,000.00 – $409,000.00, negotiations are ongoing.  There are grants by NIKE and the county which could help defrays cost and there is still the lawsuit vs. the manufacturer to consider.
There have been advancements and new technology in turf development.  There are several infield materials such as organic and synthetic (cool play). 
To the question regarding drainage and if the field should go back to grass or relocated, most of our fields are along waterways.  Land Tech suggested plants, trees and shrubs to block water and silt, which was done.  As for relocating there are many good characteristics at Maple Park, the Village owns three sides of the field, plenty of parking at the site, tree buffers and it is near the center of town. This outweighs the negative aspect of the river.
 Habernickel Park – Request for Gatehouse Use/WGR
 Lisa Betancourt, as a representative of the Women Gardeners of Ridgewood, was at the meeting with a proposal to create a resource room in one of the unused space in the Gatehouse building at Habernickel Park.  They do not have a permanent home for the historical items and information, books and reference materials on a variety of gardening subjects.  These resources will be made available to residents and community groups along with the expertise of the club members at designated or arranged times each month.  This was introduced and discussed previously at the last PRC meeting.
 The Women Gardeners of Ridgewood have provided and maintained gardens at the Stable, Library, Van Neste and Habernickel.  They also offer scholarships to Green Kids. 
 They are a self sufficient group that provides everything at their own expense; they do not receive any funds from the Village. Some shelving, tables, seating and carpeting will be added to create a library resource room working atmosphere.  Two families have already volunteered to assist.
This resource room would be open to the public once or twice a month, a good place for planning gardens, doing projects and obtaining gardening information.  The Women Gardeners of Ridgewood will begin with limited hours.  It was discussed and will start with one weekday 12:00 to 4:00 pm (no later than 4 pm).  The WGR already have an insurance rider 2,000,000 aggregate and the Village is on the certificate.
With the understanding that the insurance guidelines are met, the hours are limited with no weekends or overtime, this advisory committee took a vote to approve.  All passed, no opposed to go forward with the project.  T. Cronin offered to take the proposal to Council.
2017 Departmental
Budget/Capital Hearing Dates, March 9 update, March 27 – Final Budget Review/Capital
 All of last year’s Capital Projects for the department have been completed with the exception of the water fountains in the parks.
 The Capital Projects for this year’s 2017 budget are as follows: 
• Pool Renovation –Arbor painting and additional shade umbrella installation 
• Stable – exterior side and roof staining
• Tree replacement throughout Village
• Tennis Courts- resurfacing
• Fencing – various projects
• Backstops (3)
• Replace 1997 Parks Vehicle
• Handicap Ramp at Habernickle Park – Community Block Grant
• Utility Trailer for Parks
Next year:  Turf and North Monroe Tennis Courts

New Business None
Committee Reports Village Council – R. Hache
 The Central Business District needs a facelift.  Gary Cirillo was at last month’s PRC meeting to discuss many of the items that were presented to Council.  The need for funding to obtain new Christmas decorations and revamp the tree wells was discussed.  The continued development of the CBD website is now being done by a Ridgewood High School student.  He is doing the website free of charge; he feels it would be a great addition to his resume.  The first draft of the website is amazing, very clean and tasteful with beautiful graphic arts.
 There is an issue concerning a player with the Maroons who has filed a grievance concerning the coach’s treatment of him. The parents are not satisfied with any resolution to date and would like to escalate this to a higher authority.  The Council does not get involved in these matters.  It was discussed and determined this should go to the Field Committee and then if not resolved, the PRC Board, or directly to the PRC.
 There was a meeting to discuss funding for the redesign of the parking garage, which will need an easement.  Blais Brancheau did a report with different ratios to maximize parking and also gain parking on street, having the two top levels for commuters and employees.  Having retail space for restaurants, yoga and gyms was also mentioned.  There would be a loss of 10 parking spaces to put in revenue producing space. R. Hache said they hoped to break ground in Summer.
 The right of way by the Ridgewood High School was purchased by Ridgewood residents.  They have not paid the taxes on the parcel of land.  The Council discussed the property to decide what could be done with it.  They spoke of selling it to the Board of Education for $1.00, using it for parking.  The price to park at the Church is $500.00.  PSE&G would like to limit parking.  This discussion will be ongoing. 
 Board of Ed - J. Morgan
 No Report
Open Space Committee - M. Mogerly
                                    The liaison from PRC, Mary Mogerly was unable to attend the meeting as she was not contacted by the committee.  Open Space Survey was sent out to a sampling of Village residents from the voter list.  The survey must be completed by April 7, 2017; Open Space will tabulate the results.
                                   Fields Committee – R. Hache/ R. Brooks
The Alumni Association of Ridgewood High School’s upcoming special event was discussed. The event is taking place over multiple days and utilizing Upper Vets Field with various tents and a multitude of activities.
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.  BOE, not being experienced took the application and now it has become a big problem for all concerned. There is controversy over the spirit vs. the language of the field policy.  The Business Administration office handles gymnasiums not the Field Commission.  This is to be discussed.
                                   Shade Tree Commission – T. Cronin 
                                   The Community Forestry Plan is underway.   They are getting ready for the Spring planting.  The amount allotted for the planting was reduced to $55,000.  Tree Crew will finish the Fall planting.  The Girl Scout Gold Star Award is working with the Shade Tree Commission to inventory the tree canopy and establish a nursery at Parks.  The Tree Preservation Ordinance is going to Council.  This will require residents to obtain a permit before they remove any trees from their property; the hope is that it will prevent them from cutting down trees merely because they do not like their location.  The ordinance will also state that the Arborist will have final say on whether a tree may be removed.
                                   Community Center Advisory Board - L. Lembo
 Aging in Place presentation was given last week.  Housing and transportation were discussed.  There is a new treasurer for the CCAB Foundation, Lisa Garvey.
 Project Pride
                                   It was mentioned that $29,000 will be allocated to Project Pride and planting new trees in the tree wells will give the CBD the biggest impact for the money expended.  R. Hache will discuss this with G. Cirillo.
 Conservancy for Ridgewood Public Lands - N. Bigos
                                   They are partnering with REAC for the Daffodil Festival and have met on several occasions to discuss.  Several hundred guests to participate, highlighting “Water Conservation - Rain to the Drain” and water conservation as theme.
 The Conservancy would like to plant a butterfly garden.  This design is to be done pro bono by Chris Raimondi and the Girl Scout Gold Award has volunteered to help with the garden’s planting. They also were contacted by Ben and Jerrys to participate in the Annual Free Cone Day.  All donations received on Tuesday, March 28th will be given to the Conservancy to facilitate the creation of the Butterfly Garden.
                                   Ridgewood Arts Council - L. Lembo
 After the Ed Center show they will be dropping off 8 to 12 pieces to the Community Center.
 Ridgewood Environmental Advisory Council
 David Sayles will be the liaison to REAC.  The next meeting will be April 23.  During the Daffodil Festival/Earth Day celebration REAC is planning to give away trees to the attendees. 
Next Meeting  Tuesday, April 25, 2017 at the Stable, 7:30 pm
Adjournment  10:45 PM
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