TOWNSHIP OF LOWER MAKEFIELD

PARK & RECREATION BOARD

MINUTES - DECEMBER 16, 2003

 

 

The regular meeting of the Park & Recreation Board of the Township of Lower Makefield was held in the Municipal Building on December 16, 2003.  Chairman Fritchey called the meeting to order at 7:40 p.m.

 

Those present:

 

Park & Recreation Board:        David Fritchey, chairman

                                                Ron Smith, Vice Chairman

                                                Patricia Bunn, Member

                                                Richard Jutkiewicz, Member

 

Others:                                     Donna Liney, Recreation Director

 

Absent:                         John Kuebler, Park & Recreation Board Secretary

                                                Henry Carpenter, Park & Recreation Board Member

                                                Andrew Newbon, Park & Recreation Board Member

                                                Wesley Hackman, Supervisor Liaison

 

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

 

Mr. Jutkiewicz moved, Ms. Bunn seconded and it was unanimously carried to approve the

Minutes of November 12, 2003 as written.

 

 

DISCUSSION AND APPROVAL OF PLAN FOR GARDEN OF REFLECTION

 

Mr. Fritchey noted the proposed design modification for the Garden of Reflection.   A copy

of the plan which had been adopted by the Board of Supervisors was shown as well as a

handout showing the proposed revisions. 

 

Ms. Ellen Saracini stated they  have raised $459,000 toward the cost of the Memorial.  She

stated they are proposing some minor changes to the Plan which they feel will make it more

efficient.  She noted the maintenance building and the shelter which includes the bathrooms

on the original plan and noted they would like to have these two structures made into one

which they feel could save money and would also be better logistically. 

 

Ms. Liuba Lashchyk stated there was a small parking area on the original plan, and they are

now proposing a curved design for parking which is more akin to the Memorial design. 

It will result in the same number of spaces.  She noted on the original plan the walkway on

the far right side of the Memorial that needs a pedestrian connection from the major parking

area.  This is now shown on the revised plan.  She stated this will be screened by trees. 

She stated there will be a gradual slope from the street, and the Memorial itself will be

down from the grade.  This will give a feeling of enclosure and a more contemplative feel. 

Mr. Fritchey asked the height of the berm, and Ms. Lashchyk stated this has not yet been

designed but she would recommend the taller the better.  Mr. Fritchey stated this would

have to be within reason.  It was noted it would probably be between three feet and six feet

high. Ms. Lashchyk stated the additional row of trees will provide a nice backdrop for the

flag.  Ms. Bunn asked the location of the wetlands as it relates to the Memorial, and

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Ms. Lashchyk showed the location on the Plan and stated they will not impact the

wetlands.  The location of the silo was noted, and Ms. Lashchyk stated they would prefer

that it be removed, but this would be a decision for the Township to make.

 

Mr. Smith asked if the changes will increase the cost of the project, and if their fundraising

is on schedule.  Ms. Saracini stated they feel they are ahead on fundraising.  Mr. Smith

asked if the changes will cause a delay, and Ms. Lashchyk stated it should not cause any

delays.  None of the residents present objected to the changes proposed.  Mr. Fritchey

stated it appears that the design will shield more of the lights associated with the Memorial

from the adjoining neighbors.  Ms. Bunn asked if the fountain will be lit, and Ms. Saracini

stated they are still proposing to light the fountain.  She stated the lights will not protrude

up into the sky.  She stated they wanted to have the lights available if they would have a

ceremony or function, but they do not feel they will be lit on a daily basis.  The intention is

to light the water.  Ms. Bunn stated if they are going to have ceremonies in the evening,

they will have to provide security lighting.

 

 

Mr. Smith moved, Mr. Jutkiewicz seconded and it was unanimously carried to recommend

to the Board of Supervisors approval of the amendments to the Preliminary Site Plan noting

that the members of the community present were in favor of the proposal.

 

 

DISCUSSION OF RECENT BOYS SOCCER COLLEGE SHOWCASE

 

Ms. Liney stated YMS hosted a college showcase for boys Saturday and Sunday of

Thanksgiving weekend. Unfortunately, YMS failed to follow established Township

procedures and did not provide notice to the Township of this special event, which was

planned to span two weekends, one for boys soccer and one for girls.  As a result,

Township Police were involved with parking overflow problems, damage resulted to Township facilities, and a number of complaints were received both in the Police Department and at the public meeting of the Board of Supervisors from neighbors in the area.  In hindsight, it appears the failure of YMS to follow established procedures and provide sufficient staff was a major contributor to the difficulties experienced with the showcase.  Ms. Liney stated the community expects the Township to insure special events function properly.  It is unacceptable to allow user groups to violate procedures. The rules and regulations are very clear on this matter.   She stated the Township may need to consider if measures should be taken against groups who violate established procedures, such as curtailing use, or monetary fines.  The Township and the Park Board will continue to assess this issue.

 

Mr. Fritchey asked how many teams were involved, and Mr. Smith stated there were 70 to

80 teams and over 100 colleges attended.  Mr. Fritchey stated while he is very much in

favor of college showcases, nothing had been discussed about this at the prior Park &

Recreation Board meeting.  Mr. Smith stated they do dispute some of the events which

were indicated took place.  He stated he feels there are a few vocal individuals who made

the situation sound worse than it was.  He stated he feels they did the best they could have

done but agrees there was a breakdown in communication.  He recognizes that better

planning should have been done and this experience will not be repeated.  He stated YMS

will have better communication between the Club and the Township noting there is a

problem when there are many people speaking on behalf of YMS.  He stated the obligation

of obtaining the appropriate permits was delegated to an individual who failed to do the job.

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While there was discussion, he recognizes that full disclosure was probably not made. 

He stated they feel they did a good job as far as the impact on Rivergate, but unfortunately the behavior of a few created a problem.  They hope to cooperate as best as they can with the neighboring development so the impact is minimized.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the were comments made about public urination, and he asked if this

was incorrect.  Mr. Smith stated they will have to plan better for this in the future and move

in more portable facilities in the back area of the parking lot.  He noted they cannot watch

everyone at all times.  Mr. Smith stated he feels this was an isolated incidence and

unfortunately a resident did see it.  He stated it was not appropriate, and they hope to

correct this problem by communicating with the coaches and bringing in more portable

facilities.  Mr. Fritchey stated the way to get more facilities is to have proper

communication with the Township.  

 

Mr. Fritchey asked why the permit was not obtained, and Mr. Smith stated he does not

have an answer for this. He stated this was a job delegated to an individual who did not do

the job.  He stated he recognizes the proper permit should be obtained or they will not be able to have the event.  Mr. Fritchey stated this is the rule already.  Mr. Smith thanked the Park & Recreation Department for trying to make this work in light of all the circumstances.  He stated they have reached out informally to the Rivergate community and

are going to try to impact the development as little as possible.

 

 

DISCUSSION OF RULES AND REGULATIONS

 

Ms. Bunn asked where the Park & Recreation Board stands on the review of the rules and

regulations, and Mr. Smith stated he made some recommendations on this some time ago. 

Mr. Fritchey stated he will work on this and they should discuss it further in the future.

Mr. Smith suggested that they work on this as soon as possible in over to avoid any future

problems.  It was agreed to put this matter on the Agenda for January.

 

 

RECREATION DIRECTOR’S REPORT

 

Ms. Liney reported that the Board of Supervisors adopted the Township Budget for 2004

at their meeting last evening, and included a Resolution to increase the user fee $4 per

resident, bringing the fees effective July, 2004 to $12 per resident and $24 per non-

resident.

 

Ms. Liney stated the Lower Makefield Seniors Group had a year-end luncheon on

December 11 with approximately 100 group members in attendance.  She stated this was a

good opportunity for the Township to recognize the Seniors volunteer efforts. The

Township presented approximately 30 thank-you gifts for service.  She stated this kind of

grass roots effort continues to improve the community for everyone.

 

Ms. Liney thanked the organizations for their continued support and volunteer efforts with

the community this past year as well as the members of the Park & Recreation Board.  She

looks forward to another successful year in 2004.

 

Ms. Liney stated they are still working on the specs for the flume slide at the Pool .  Staff

letters will go out to past Pool employees shortly.

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Mr. Fritchey asked which large projects are being considered for 2004, and Ms. Liney

stated resurfacing of the Yardley Hunt loop is one of the major items.  They will also

resurface portions of the Macclesfield Park parking lot and consider re-striping to see if

they can pick up some additional parking stalls.  Mr. Smith stated he would also like to

consider whether they should permit temporary parking on the grass during special events. 

Mr. Fritchey stated this could be done if the Police Department was involved.  Ms. Liney

stated when YMS runs a very large tournament, they usually give out six parking space

permits per team and then run a shuttle bus service.  Ms. Liney stated the Park & Ride is a

State facility and you are supposed to get permission to have buses in that lot.

 

 

LEAGUE LIAISON REPORTS

 

Mr. Smith reporting on behalf of YMS apologized to the Township as there was a

breakdown in the rosters.  He stated they are 90% complete.  He stated they did put in their

dates for the Camps they are running in the summer.

 

Mr. Jutkiewicz reporting on Lower Bucks Lacrosse stated he was notified by Middletown

Township that their registration signs need to be taken down as soon as registration ends

and they will do this.  Ms. Liney noted that Lower Makefield does require that sign permits

be obtained.

 

 

OTHER BUSINESS

 

Mr. Fritchey asked if it is known if any money is available to start developing Snipes. 

Ms. Liney stated nothing specific was budgeted in Park & Recreation.  Mr. Smith stated YMS would like to take over Snipes and work with the Township in a partnership provided it would be used exclusively by the organization that is in partnership with the Township.

 

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 9:15 p.m.

 

                                                                        Respectfully Submitted,

 

 

                                                                       

 

 

                                                                        David Fritchey, Chairman