Park and Recreation Commission


(meeting taped)

Regular meeting: Monday, June 10, 2002 in the Aldermanic Chambers of City Hall.

Meeting was called to order at 7:07 p.m.

By roll call, members present: John Walsh, Al Felice, David Mikos and Matt Cripps. Karen Izzo, Robert Bell and Edward Handi. were excused.

Parks and Recreation Director Dennis O’Connell was present. Athletic Director Kenneth Marcucio was absent.

additions or deletions to the agenda:

Without objection, the agenda was accepted, as written.

approval of minutes:

A motion was made by David Mikos and second by Matt Cripps. Move to accept the minutes of the meeting on May 13, 2002. Motion carried with John Walsh and Al Felice abstaining.

Public portion:

No one came forward and the public portion was closed.


Nothing was presented.


Parks & Recreation Director’s Report:

Mr. O'Connell presented a proposal to increase the fee schedule at the Derby Veteran's Community Center. This would allow for a small increase in the fees, generating in the range of $2,000. The current fee schedule has been in place for the past two years. Currently there are 136 members. Increased costs for supplies, as well as the anticipated increase in space with the transfer of the fire marshal’s office to the new City Hall, bolstered this request. The effective date, if accepted, would be July 1, 2002.

Members discussed this matter. It was noted that the current fees are very favorable in comparison to other organizations. It was also noted that the current actual revenue far exceeded the estimated budget amount. The surplus returns to the City’s general fund. While this surplus definitely offsets the budgeted expenditures for the Parks & Recreation Department, in terms of the City’s entire budget; it does not provide for additional spending on the Center itself. It was pointed out that this surplus does provide a better position in the future for requesting increased funding. It was questioned whether any surplus revenue could be returned to the department but this would have to be explored with the Board of Apportionment and Taxation.

A motion was made by Matt Cripps and second by David Mikos. Move to approve the new fee schedule for the Derby Veteran's Community Center, effective July 1, 2002.

Discussion on the motion. Members discussed whether this was warranted being that there is a surplus in revenues at this time.

A motion was made by Al Felice to table this discussion for a period of six months. There was no second and the motion failed.

The vote was taken on the original motion to approve. Matt Cripps and David Mikos were in favor. John Walsh and Al Felice were opposed. The motion failed.

Mr. O'Connell reported that transfers were made within the department’s budget to increase the building and field supplies line item by $2,625. The transfers were taken from the Yankee gas, Water Co. and light pole line items.

A new door was installed in the Derby Veteran's Community Center. Upon review by the Building Official and the Fire Marshall, this installation created issues as to access and egress, as per code. An additional door will have to be installed to remedy the issues.

The playground program started July 1st. It will run for six weeks from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. weekdays. The program is at Bradley School and at the Picnic Grove.

Chairman Walsh noted that the City is working to securing the funding for the proposed skate park. Operating rules and regulations as well as hours of operation and fee schedules must be developed. A sub-committee was formed, consisting of Karen Izzo, John Walsh and Dennis O’Connell. They will explore the rules set by adjoining towns and develop a proposal to be presented at the next meeting.

Athletic Director’s Report: Mr. Marcucio was not present.

Committee Reports:

Programs Committee – Last month the proposal was presented to offer Red Cross training to the coaches. Members discussed this further and decided to move forward on the suggestion. They will ask Ms. Izzo to investigate the matter further. It was felt that a figure should be developed for the cost. The amount could be capped at a predetermined level and the program could be offered at a first come, first serve basis. As there are approximately 150 coaches, the fee for the classes and the certification was estimated at $1,000 so the budget will be reviewed for available funding.

Ron Slowik and Michele Mastrianni were present representing the Pop Warner program. The Little League directors were also invited but were unable to attend this meeting. The purpose was to discuss the maintenance costs of the Little League/Pop Warner field house and to see if the City could find funding within the Parks & Recreation Department budget to assist in this expense.

Mr. Slowik noted that much of the City’s allocation to the Pop Warner program goes to the maintenance of the building. Both Pop Warner and Little League share utility costs and maintenance costs. As this is a city building, it was asked that the City assist in the general maintenance needs. Currently, there is an issue as to the water supply in the building.

Chairman Walsh indicated that with the exception of custodial services added in the past few years, the Parks & Recreation Department has had no involvement in the maintenance of the building. Mr. O'Connell felt that active supervision and participation by the two programs were needed to develop a mutual arrangement. It was decided that a discussion should be scheduled to explore this matter with all the directors of the two programs.

Programs Committee – Mr. Felice reported that the Witek Park Construction Committee has been meeting and the City Engineer has been retained to develop the plans for the fields. Surveyors will be on the parcel to map all notable features of the parcel such as the location of the new monument, substantial trees, areas of wetlands, stone structures, etc. Studies are also being explored in regards to environmental issues and issues of possible endangered species. The Committee intends to have an on-site tour of the area to review the prime location for the fields.

Mr. Felice noted that he walked Bradley School and the soccer field is distressed, most specifically in the area of the goals. He also noted that last month it was mentioned that the storage provided by the school was no longer available for the soccer program. As LoCIP funds were slated to build a bathroom/storage facility and now, to the Commission’s understanding, the funds have been withdrawn, he questioned how the storage issue is to be handled and how the urgent need for bathroom facilities will be addressed. Members decided to approach the Board of Apportionment and Taxation to see if this need can be addressed. Mr. O'Connell noted that he is exploring portable storage. It was also discussed that other LoCIP funding for the storage facility at Ryan Field is suspended. This storage was to address the maintenance equipment and supplies that are currently housed at the field house. This too is an urgent need as the current shared use of the building was questioned during the re-accreditation of the High School and has been an ongoing concern by the programs utilizing the facility.


Nothing was presented.


A motion was made by David Mikos and second by Al Felice. Move to adjourn this meeting at 8:40 p.m. Motion carried unanimously.


The next Parks & Recreation Commission meeting will be Monday, July 8, 2002 at 7:00 p.m. at City Hall. If the Aldermanic Chambers are unavailable then the Veteran’s room will be requested.

Respectfully prepared,

Karen Kemmesies, secretary

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