Park Board Minutes

August 11, 2008

A regular meeting of the Hopkins Park Board was held on August 11, 2008.

  1. Call to Order
    The meeting was called to order by Park Board Chairperson Doug Datta at 7:05 pm.
  2. Roll Call
    Present were Park Board members: Molly Cummings, Sharon Paulson, Aaron Kuznia and Doug Datta. Also present was City of Hopkins staff liaison Steve Stadler.
  3. Approval of Minutes
    Sharon Paulson moved and Molly Cummings seconded a motion to approve the minutes for the May 19, 2008 meeting.  On the vote, the minutes were approved 4-0.
  4. Business
    1. Mosquito Control Spraying at Neighborhood Parks    
      Chairman Datta moved this agenda item up to be the first one considered at the meeting.  Steve Stadler explained that a complaint had been received based on mosquito control spraying that was done in Interlachen Park this past July 4.  Residents adjacent to the park were not notified prior to the spraying, as required by State Law.  City staff was not aware of the spraying in the park.
          Ms. Becky Anderson, 241 Maple Hill Road appeared before the Park Board.  She expressed concern that the mosquito spraying was done in an improper manner, violated State Law and subjected her and others to potential adverse health reactions.  The Park Board had previously received the OSHA material safety data sheet information on the chemical used, Resmethrin and a copy of 2007 Minnesota Statutes 18B.07 Pesticide Use, Application, and Equipment Cleaning.
          After discussion it was decided to revise City Code 830 - Parks, Recreational and Passive Areas to include a paragraph that expressly prohibits chemical spraying for herbicide or insect control in Parks without prior written City approval that includes conditions to ensure that the applicator adheres to all applicable State Laws.  Steve Stadler will draft the new language and inform the Park Board via email or mail prior to City Council considering the ordinance to revise the City Code.
          Aaron Kuznia made a motion for the above-mentioned City Code revision, seconded by Sharon Paulson.  On the vote, the motion carried 4-0.
    2. Nine Mile Creek Creek Stabilization Project and Three Rivers Park District new regional trail project   
      Kevin Bigalke, Nine Mile Creek Watershed District Administrator presented the creek bank stabilization/habitat enhancement project specifics, including construction techniques and schedule.  City Council is scheduled to approve the final design of the creek project on August 19, 2008.  The current schedule calls for construction to begin in Dec 2008/January 2009 timeframe depending on the timing of the Army Corps of Engineers permitting process.  Construction will proceed in two phases with the southern section (Valley Park and wetlands areas) starting in the fall of 2009.  The Watershed District project will include constructing an aggregate base for the new regional trail in all areas where the trail will run alongside the creek.  The Watershed District will hold its public hearing on the project on September 10, 2008 at Hopkins City Hall.   Kelly Grissman, Three Rivers Park District presented the scope and timing of the trail project in Hopkins, the additional connecting trail work in Edina and Richfield and long range trail plans.  The Park District is planning to pave the 10' wide trail with asphalt beginning in 2009, the start dates will depend on the schedule of the creek improvement project.  It was mentioned that a local Eagle Scout project is planned for this fall to construct a new trail/creek/park informational kiosk near the parking lot at the intersection of 9th Avenue S and Westbrook Way.  Kevin Bigalke stated that the creek is planned to be routed further away from the community garden plots.  However, the project will include installing a cistern connected via pipe to the creek bed such that water will be more easily available to gardeners and no further from the garden plots.
          Aaron Kuznia made a motion that the Park Board recommend City Council approval of the Nine Mile Creek Stabilization Project, as described.  Sharon Paulson seconded the motion.  On the vote, the motion carried 4-0.   
    3. 2009 City Budget Discussion   
      Steve Stadler reported on the ongoing 2009 General Fund budget review.  He stressed that for 2009 it would be very difficult to add discretionary items due to the 3.9% tax levy limit and increasing costs for energy utilities and personnel-related expenses.  The 2009 budget submittal included $24,000 for neighborhood park improvements based on feedback from the park surveys.  After discussion, the Park Board requested that the neighborhood park requests be reduced to include a water fountain at Oakes Park and 10-12 trees for several of the parks - the estimated cost is $6,000.   
    4. 2009 - 2013 Park Capital Improvement Plan
      Stadler reported that the City Council approved the park projects in the 2009-2013 CIP as submitted by the Park Board.  There are projects in 2009 (park shelter) and 2010 (play equipment) for Interlachen Park.  After discussion, the Park Board members agreed that for the September 15 meeting Stadler would propose a neighborhood outreach plan to engage the neighborhood in the improvement process. 
    5. Park Board Strategic Plan Update/City Goals & Park Board Goal
      Stadler did a cursory review of the Board's goals and suggested that each member review them and be ready to discuss revisions to reflect 2009/2010 goals at the Sept 15 meeting.  Molly Cummings mentioned that the Park Board should consider supporting the "Take it to Them" City goal.  The Park Board could look for ways to move their meeting to other locations throughout the city, especially when agenda topics are of particular interest to a certain park area, for instance.  The other Park Board members supported this idea. 
    6. Miscellaneous Updates on various items of interest
      1. Tennis Court Rehab Project - lease of property from School District - Ubah Medical Academy use of facilities:  Stadler reported that bid opening will be on Wednesday, August 13 and that there has been difficulty getting agreement on the final language that defines the Ubah Medical Academy use of the tennis courts and hockey rink. 
      2. Central Park Field #4:  Stadler reported that he is meeting on Tuesday, Aug 12 with the presidents of the HALL and Hopkins Area Babe Ruth league to determine level of interest and  potential financial partnerships.  The current CIP does not include the ballfield improvement project.
      3. Rotary Park project:  The planning and fund raising for this project is continuing.  Three Rivers Park District has approved the project and HCRRA will approve it once the drawings are revised to rename the project from "Rotary Park" so some other name descriptive name. There's a lot to be done yet but we're hopeful that work could begin this summer/fall. 
      4. Blake Road/Cottageville Park planning:  Stadler handed out excerpts from the Blake Road Corridor Small Area Plan and reviewed the timing and scope of work.   Park Board members were encouraged to attend the upcoming August 25 workshop.            
    7. Park Area Assignments Reports:
      Aaron Kuznia:  Maetzold Field, Interlachen Park and Shady Oak Beach -  no report.    
      Sharon Paulson:  Hilltop, Buffer and Burnes Parks - no report.
      Vacant:  Valley Park, Central Park, Oakes Park 
      Molly Cummings:  Cottageville Park, Harley Hopkins Park, Elmo Park - Molly mentioned there was a lot of broken glass that she picked up at Cottageville Park. 
      Doug Datta:  Park Valley Playground, Shady Oak Nature Area, Downtown Park, Hiawatha Oaks natural area - nothing to report - Doug requested a Shady Oak Beach update for the next meeting on how the revenues faired as well as the changes in the beach pass program.
          Molly Cummings mentioned that the Depot Partners were very appreciative of the Park Board support through Molly's attendance at Partners meetings as well as the Board's participation in the purchase-a-chair fundraiser.
  5. Next Scheduled Meeting
    The next regular Park Board Meeting is September 15, 2008 at 6:30 p.m.
  6. Adjournment
    Sharon Paulson moved and Molly Cummings seconded a motion to adjourn.  The motion carried on a 4-0 vote.  The meeting adjourned at 9:30 p.m.