Parks explores fees and permits

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Parks Interim-Director Scott Miskiel brought up possible fees at the regularly scheduled workshop on Sept. 7. The issue had to do with exclusive use of parks for smaller activities, weddings or classes, being used throughout the discussion. Miskiel asked the commission if they wished to handle the issue through permit application, fees, and/or mixture a of the two.

The topic even stretched to ballfield use, Miskiel pointing out that they are the most costly item in regards to maintenance, and the soccer program done through the schools is the only program that uses it on a consistent basis.

Commissioners generally agreed that fees, if any, would need to be the same for all groups. Permit applications, noted during the meeting, would help to avoid conflict of activities within parks and any fees would need to be scalable to the amount of time and manpower it would take to make the area available for the event.

Commissioner Ruth Hager said that there had not been consistency during soccer tournaments on whether fees were taken for visitors, referencing a time when parking had to be paid to raise money for the soccer program. Miskiel suggested a cleaning deposit could work in the process of a permit, only given back if cleanup by the permit holder was done properly. When asked what that deposit would look like he said in the range of $50.

Chair Kevin Ruehle told commissioners a decision was not needed immediately but it would be something to start considering in the future as more changes are made to the Parks systems.

And bouncing off that…

A proposed contract from civil engineering design firm Crafton Tull was discussed, with Miskiel saying he had reached out to another architectural firm for a contract proposal as well.

Crafton Tull’s proposal includes drawing site plans for Lake Leatherwood City Park including, but not limited to, plans for the ballfields, shuttle turnaround, and day use areas such as campground and cabins. Miskiel described the proposal as not employing “Band-Aids” and would be the first step to creating a framework for developing Parks resources.

Commissioners discussed the roadway leading to the LLCP campgrounds, considered a county road, but Miskiel and Ruehle said that the county would not repair the roadway. Ruehle said that there was supposedly a time when Parks said they would take full responsibility for the road, but he had not found any record of it. Nonetheless, commissioners agreed that something needed doing and Ruehle asked Miskiel to see if the county could issue a waiver so Parks could begin repairs.

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