REGULAR MEETING OF DECEMBER 6, 2011
MIDLAND CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS
1) Call to Order: Meeting called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Chairperson Frank Altimore
2) Roll Call:
a. MEMBERS PRESENT: Altimore, Bovid, Carlson, Carney, Kelley, Metevia, Rice, Steidemann
b. MEMBERS ABSENT: Jurado
c. OTHERS PRESENT: City attorney Jim Branson
3) Minutes of November 1, 2011: Rice motioned, Steidemann seconded to receive minutes of the meeting of November 1, 2011. Motion passed 8-0.
4) Call to Audience: None
5) Proposed Recreation Fee Public Hearing: Murphy reviewed the proposed recreation fees as presented to the Commission at their November meeting. A public hearing was conducted with no public comments offered. Steidemann motioned to recommend the fees as proposed to City Council at the upcoming joint meeting with the Parks and Recreation Commission and the City Council. Metevia seconded. Motion passed 8-0.
6) Follow up on tobacco-free parks request: As requested by the Commission at their November meeting, City attorney Jim Branson was present to discuss the request from resident Enas Yousef to make areas of the parks around playgrounds tobacco-free. Branson outlined his concerns with an ordinance or signage in the parks that would limit an individual’s right to engage in an otherwise legal activity in a public place owned by the tax payers. Branson also outlined concerns with enforceability and explained that the City does not have a history of complaints related to tobacco use near playgrounds where this issue would raise to the level of changing current practices and/or policies. Branson recommended that signage or an ordinance is not warranted at this time.
Altimore asked for comments from the petitioner and the public. Susan Dusseau, representing Cancer Services, voiced her support for Ms. Yousef’s desire to limit smoking in the parks, citing examples of the Fraternal Northwest Little League where smoking has been banned during league play, and the Midland Public Schools where all school grounds are smoke-free. Residents Zeina Elnachef and Karin Pelletier both spoke in support of no smoking around playgrounds as well. Mike Krecek of the Midland County Health Department spoke to the difficulty of this topic and pledged the support of his department should the City need assistance with creating an ordinance in the future.
Altimore closed public comment and Metevia motioned to accept the following resolution as proposed by the city attorney: We, the City of Midland Parks and Recreation Commission, have reviewed the request presented by Enas Yousef as well as information presented by city staff and hereby find that signage or proposed additional ordinances for tobacco-free zones within the parklands of the City of Midland are not warranted at this time. Carney seconded the motion. After discussing the proposed resolution, the Commission voted and the motion passed 6-2.
7) Project Report:
a. Band shell update – Murphy reported that the band shell project was temporarily delayed while Gerace conducted a review of the structural elements of the 1938 design in order to ascertain if the framework met current building requirements. The project is underway again with the concrete forms currently under construction.
b. Accessible canoe and kayak launch – Murphy reported that the concrete plaza is in place along with the asphalt path leading down to the river. Over the course of the next few weeks, site restoration will continue along with placement of benches, signage and light fixtures. The launch itself will also be assembled and placed into the water to ensure the launch meets project expectations as the project needs to close by year end.
c. Grove Park accessible play structure – Murphy reported the play structure is underway with the main framework in place. Parks staff will continue to work on installation of slides, climbers and other play features as weather permits. The structure will not open for use until the proper fall protection material is in place.
8) Old Business : None
9) New Business: None
10) Adjourn: Motioned by Steidemann, seconded by Carlson to adjourn the meeting. Motion passed 8– 0. Meeting adjourned at 7:48 p.m.
Director of Public Services