PARKS, RECREATION AND CULTURAL
THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 10, 2009 – 7:30 PM
NOVI CIVIC CENTER – COUNCIL CHAMBERS
The meeting was called to order at 7:35 PM with Commissioner Staab
ROLL CALL: Blair (Present), Dooley (Present), Iszler (Absent),
Jewell (Absent), Policicchio (Present), Staab (Present), Wingfield (Absent),
APPROVAL OF AGENDA:
Commissioner Dooley asked that item 8 A be moved down to 8 C.
It was moved by Commissioner Blair and seconded by Commissioner
Policicchio to approve the agenda as amended.
Voice Vote Unanimous
CITIZEN COMMENTS: None
APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
It was moved by Commissioner Policicchio and seconded by Commissioner
Blair to approve the August 13, 2009 minutes as written.
Voice Vote Unanimous
A. Walkable Novi – Commissioners Iszler & Policicchio
Commissioner Policicchio stated the meeting was just before this
meeting and they discussed the draft of the proposed pathways and
sidewalks. Very objective criteria are given to each potential segment to
be completed. Numbers are assigned an order of importance. That draft will
be further revised and voted on October 8th. It will serve as
the framework for planning. There was mention of inviting Parks and
Recreation to tell of any sidewalks that need to be looked at in terms of
accessing the parks.
B. Novi Park Foundation – Commissioners Dooley & Staab
Commissioner Dooley stated there was a meeting last Tuesday. The Novi
Parks Foundation Gala is going to take place on Saturday, November 14th
at the Hotel Barronette. The theme is "Captains night on a Cruise Ship."
Tickets will soon be available and raffle tickets are currently available.
On the 19th of September at ITC Community Sports Park there is
picture day and the Foundation will be out cooking hot dogs.
Commissioner Staab stated that the Novi Parks Foundation will have a
booth at Fall for Novi on September 26th.
Commissioner Dooley stated that in the "Engage" magazine, on page 74,
is a section on the Novi Parks Foundation.
A. Recreation Division – Superintendent of Recreation Nancy Cowan
Superintendent Cowan stated that September is a busy month for the
Parks and Recreation department. The new Engage is out.
The Fuerst Park Grand Opening occurred on Friday, August 21st.
The movie that was to play that night, "Kung Fu Panda" was rained out and
has been rescheduled for Friday, September 25th at Fuerst Park.
On September 23rd and 30th there will be music
performed by High School students at Furest Park.
Opening Day of soccer and flag football is this coming Saturday. Our
numbers have held in soccer and increased some in flag football.
Outdoor Week is new for us and is a national initiative in which we
chose to participate. We are one of the few in the State to be doing this.
We have a Family Campout at Lakeshore Park to kick off this week.
We will have our third annual Fire Up Fest on the evening of September
18th from 9:30 to 11:45p.m. It takes place on one of the
softball fields at Ella Mae Power Park.
Fall for Novi Family Fun Day which includes the International Festival
will be Saturday, September 26th from 10:00am to 2:00pm.
B. Administration Division – Randy Auler
Director Auler stated that we received notification in yesterday’s mail
that our five-year Community Recreation Plan has been approved by the
Department of Natural Resources. We are now eligible for State and Federal
Grant funds through 2013. He thanked the Commission for the effort of the
Committee and for helping carry that process forward. He recognized Nancy
Cowan for her time and effort. We will now consider what types of projects
we want to submit for the next grant deadline which is April 1st.
Those grants can be for acquisition or development for capital improvement
Since the adoption of the last plan we completed all of the strategic
items which were identified in that plan. That plan yielded over two
million grant dollars for the City of Novi and our department.
Commissioner Blair asked about the grant dollar figure.
Director Auler stated that we received many grants. Two of the large
grants were land acquisition grants. They are 80/20 which means that we
put up 20 percent of the match. Our match was done by in-kind and donated
dollars. $53,000 was put up in City money toward one of the projects but
it translated in to over a million dollars in grant dollars. The Kresge
Foundation made a grant to our department last year and again this year.
We received Target Corp money as well as a tree inventory and planting
MATTERS FOR COMMISSION DISCUSSION AND/OR ACTION:
A. Discussion and approval of remainder of 2009 and 2010 Park, Recreation
& Cultural Services meeting start times.
Director Auler stated that in 2004 that City Council changed their
meeting time from 7:30p.m. to 7:00p.m. At that time, most of the City
Commissions and bodies which met in the evening also changed their meeting
times to 7:00p.m.
The Park Commission elected to continue our meetings at 7:30p.m. At a
recent City Council meeting the Council was considering the calendar for
next year and it was brought up that the Parks Commission was the only
evening body that meets at 7:30p.m. They would like the Park Commission to
consider moving the meeting time to 7:00p.m. so that there is consistency
with all of the evening City meetings for the citizens to attend or view.
Director Auler opened the floor to questions.
Commissioner Policicchio moved that the Parks, Recreation & Cultural
Services Commission meetings begin at 7:00p.m. starting with the October,
2009 meeting. It was seconded by Commissioner Blair.
Commissioner Staab stated that he personally still has the same
challenges he had in 2004 but he understands the desire for consistency
Voice Vote Unanimous
B. Review and discussion of park maintenance standards
Director Auler stated that in the late 1980’s NRPA came out with park
maintenance standards for the purpose of providing an objective measure
for departments in terms of quality of the parks, consistency across the
country and ways to measure that progress objectively in terms of resource
allocation, budget allocation and time it takes to perform various tasks.
These were a guideline for local governments to develop their own park
maintenance standards. In 2003 our department adopted park maintenance
standards and revised them in 2004. The standards developed in 2004 are
more of a narrative nature and not as objective to measure.
Recently the park maintenance operation transferred into the Department
of Public Services. One of the things we have been looking at is how we
can provide an objective measure of standards. Included in the packet is a
document that identifies the standards for all of the parks, the
facilities in the parks and the athletic fields. It is in draft form. One
of the main components of this document is that there are now photographs
of what is acceptable and meets the standard and what is not acceptable.
We a looking for a document or tool which provides us a way to the end
result of quality within our park system.
In the future, our next steps are to continue to revise these. We will
also work on design and construction standards so when we are building in
our parks we will have the same set of standards for all of them. This
evening he would like the Commission’s comments or to assign it to a
Committee. He would suggest and encourage the Commission to be the
Commissioner Staab stated that he thinks it is an excellent
benchmarking tool and he looks forward to be active in the evaluation.
Commissioner Dooley asked Director Auler what he would like from the
Parks and Recreation Commission and the timeframe.
Director Auler stated that the next step is to continue revising the
standards by identifying the parks and placing them in to degrees of
resource allocation depending on the level of service. The parks need to
be categorized and the standards reviewed and revised. This would be
brought back to the Commission for consideration, approval and adoption.
At that point he would like the Commission to help to do audits of the
parks, actually going out to the parks and grading them.
Commissioner Dooley stated that there are four Commissioners present
this evening and asked if this should be tabled until October when there
may be a full Commission.
Director Auler stated that he would not ask the Commission to act until
the standards are in a final format. He anticipates having that ready for
the next meeting.
Commissioner Blair asked what type of review process should be done as
Director Auler asked if the Commission is interested in being the body,
initially, doing the park audits and bringing back the information. The
department, as operations people, can take the audit and determine what
needs to be done.
Commissioner Policicchio asked about the Commission’s roll and
Director Auler stated that the quality responsibility is with the
staff. The Commission would be serving as an extra set of eyes that isn’t
at the site on a daily basis for feedback.
Commissioner Staab asked how we presently evaluate and audit our parks.
Director Auler stated that right now it is internal and some external.
We use the narrative standards we currently have in place and have work
maintenance plans for almost all of our parks by month. We will finalize
those for the rest of the parks for which we do not have plans in place.
We also utilize customer feed back.
Commissioner Dooley stated that it is important for the Commission to
be involved in this in some manner. Being an extra set of eyes will be a
very workable plan for the Commission.
C. Annual Election of Commission Chairperson and Vice Chairperson
Commissioner Staab nominated Paul Policicchio for Vice Chairperson for
the 2009-2010 Commission. It was seconded by Commissioner Blair.
Commissioner Dooley stated that he would like to step down as the Vice
Commissioner Blair made a motion that the nominations for Vice
Voice Vote Unanimous
Commissioner Policicchio was elected as Vice Chairperson
Commissioner Staab nominated Commissioner Dooley as Chairperson for the
2009-2010 Commission. It was seconded by Commissioner Blair.
Commissioner Blair made a motion that the nominations for Chair person
Voice Vote Unanimous
Commissioner Dooley was elected as Chairperson.
Director Auler stated that the Senior Show kicked off today.
Superintendent Cowan stated that we will have over 1200 people from all
over the metro area and state come to see the Senior Show in the next two
weeks. The first show was today and was a great success. There are six shows
in all. It is a show by seniors for seniors. City Councilperson Crawford is
Director Auler stated that our Senior Services Division had an
opportunity to participate in a pilot project in terms of a survey for our
community addressing older adult needs. We were one of four or five cities
across the country that participated and partnered with the National
Research Center to have that survey done. The results of that survey
process, the results, were featured in the National Parks and Recreation
magazine this past month. Novi was the featured community and our Senior
Services Division was featured within that article. That has resulted in
other communities across the country contacting us for additional
information. The things that we do pay dividends and benefits for our
citizens as well as our community image which helps with the quality of
life, economic development and other factors. Thanks to Rachel Zagaroli and
her leadership along with Dr. Tom Miller from the National Research Center
in making that project come to fruition.
Commissioner Dooley asked if that is something that novi.org or maybe the
Novi News to pick up on.
Director Auler stated that he believes that it went up on the City
website today with a link to the article. He also believes that the
Community Relations Department distributed that information to the media. It
is also on our State Association website.
CITIZEN COMMENTS: None
Commissioner Staab congratulated the Department and Rachel Zagaroli on
being recognized. He encouraged the citizens to become involved in the many
activities available this month. The Novi Choralaires, who partner with the
department, will have auditions starting at 7:45, Tuesday night at Novi
Middle School. For more information you can call 248-348-2919.
Commissioner Policicchio stated that he has some out of town guest and
they have had remarks about how nice the park was and how good it is to see
communities still progressing. You should not underestimate the sense of
community pride our programs bring. He doesn’t’ think that the community
realized the contributions that are made by commissioners and staff that go
beyond in terms of involvement and raising funds.
Commissioner Blair encouraged the public to give the Commission feedback.
He supports recycling and the green initiative by the Parks Department.
Commissioner Dooley stated that there is an opportunity for seniors to
get flu shots on October 15th at the Novi Civic Center between
8:00a.m and 1:00p.m.
The meeting was adjourned by Commissioner Dooley at 8:29 PM.
Jay Dooley, Chairperson
Paul Policicchio, Vice Chairperson