Ashland School District No. 5, Jackson County, Oregon - The Board of Directors met in a joint work session with the Ashland City Council and Ashland Parks and Recreation Commission on July 28, 2005, at 7:00 p.m. at the Ashland Council Chambers. Present were:
Heidi Parker ) Chair
Ruth Alexander )
Amy Amrhein ) Board Members
Mat Marr )
Amy Patton )
Juli Di Chiro, Superintendent
I. Call to Order
The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m.
II. Roll Check
A roll of the board was taken and all members were present.
III. Introduction and Agenda Review
Ms. Eggers gave an overview of the previous meeting and the purpose for calling the three bodies together. She invited the members of the three groups to introduce themselves.
Ms. Eggers stated that Councilor Cate Hartzell, Ashland School Board Member Heidi Parker, and Parks Commission Chair Mike Gardiner pulled together the main issues that three bodies would like to address. Ms. Parker gave a brief overview of the previous meeting and stated that the groups met and brainstormed ideas that three agencies could work on together and came up with 61 ideas. The main categories went out to the members and were prioritized.
Ashland School Board Member Mat Marr presented the results of the survey conducted and provided the 16 items that received the highest votes. See attached. The top item was item #4. Second highest #8. Third highest #28. He added that #13, 22, 42, 23, 43, 33, 24, 46, 26, 18 were also scored as important issues to the three bodies.
IV. Public Input
Melissa Mitchell Hooge- 271 High St. Ms. Hooge stated that she represented Save Our Schools and Playgrounds. She presented the preliminary idea of a lease option plan where the Parks Department could lease the playgrounds for exchange of watering of grounds. She included another option for the City to pay for the irrigation and Parks could fund the maintenance. She shared that in California, school boards are required to lease or sell playgrounds to Cities, Parks, Regional Parks, or Counties. She reported that a task force is doing research in other communities and many have agreements with the City and/or Parks. She suggested that a committee be formed immediately to address these issues with two members from each board.
Paul Copeland- 462 Jennifer St. Mr. Copeland explained that his opinion is that the school district cannot maintain Briscoe and Lincoln as neighborhood parks. He stated the school district should allow the City or Parks ownership and stated that a long term solution is needed. There is a need for a joint study session because these groups don’t understand each other’s perspective. He stated there was a misunderstanding about Parks trading maintenance for the change in ownership and there was misinterpretation. He added they need to involve and inform the public earlier of their intentions.
V. Review Top 15 Priorities
The members discussed who would move forward with the items seen as important. It was decided that the three bodies will steer the process along. Ms. Parker added that each member is very busy and they need to look at how to make changes without creating more meetings to attend.
The members discussed why they chose their priorities and the existing efforts.
#4,6, The members discussed that the existing effort is that it used to be jointly owned and part of the City and has recently, in the last four years, become a school district issue. The County won the bid but is not doing a very good job maintaining. One of Parks Commission’s highest priorities is to have a park within ¼ mile of every residence. They need to look at how to create a long term goal that will last through political change.
The members asked who makes the decision if one is developed and discussed that it could be one that is decided by all bodies. There is a need to identify responsible bodies. Staff will ask the legal department. The importance is to know that they can enter into negotiations.
#8, The members discussed the existing effort that there is a housing commission in place and what is missing is the participation of representations from school board and Parks. They need to try to make possible for people to be able to afford to live here. Mr. Marr offered the suggestion that Iowa is giving $500 tax credit per year to those under 30 who stay in the state. He stated that workforce housing is important and spoke to the quality of life in Ashland.
#28, The members discussed the existing bike and pedestrian commission and bio diesel fuel in school buses. There is a need for a workable mass transit transportation system and an effort to get people to take alternate transportation to school. With the closers of schools, it has made it more difficult for students to walk. They could develop more walking paths to schools. The members discussed that there are some projects in process now to include sidewalks.
The members discussed the food and beverage tax and how it funds open space. Mr. Gardiner explained that it was a mechanism to fund, and would never fund fully.
#42, The members discussed that SOU does not provide free bus passes anymore. Gino Grimaldi, City Administrator explained that the City is looking at several alternatives. Mr. Marr suggested lobbying for funding.
#23, Mr. Marr suggested a joint meeting of the budget committees.
#43, The members suggested solar energy. The City is looking at conservation in vehicles and the school district is attempting to improve energy efficiency. They discussed the need to explore grant opportunities.
#24, Juli DiChiro, School Superintendent spoke that members could work together on health care issues.
#19, The members discussed that the school board has a larger area to cover than the City and Parks govern and joint lobbying could help.
#25, There is an active group looking at SDC’s for schools.
Members chose top three issues they felt important to address as a combined body:
Public Land as shared assets
Fund Open Space Plan
The members placed a green dot next to the item the felt were starting points for action and blue dots for goals for the future. The number of dots given is shown below.
The members decided to meet again to talk about strategy to proceed. They will think over what they discussed tonight and bring back ideas on how to move forward. The members can talk to the community and their staff and bring back ideas and what can be accomplished.
The next meeting will be September 8, 2005.
Mr. Gardiner suggested that three bodies split the watering of Briscoe for the remainder of year which will be approximately $10,000. The members discussed that they would not be able to make that decision at that venue.
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9:05 p.m.
Jeanne Peterson, Executive Secretary