SPECIAL CITY COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES
COUNCIL CHAMBERS – CITY HALL
1000 CITY CENTER CIRCLE
JANUARY 17, 2012
THE SPECIAL CITY COUNCIL MEETING of the City of Port Orange was called to order by Mayor Allen Green at 5:32 p.m.
Pledge of Allegiance
Roll Call: Present: Councilman Bob Ford
Councilman Donald Burnette
Councilman Dennis Kennedy
Vice Mayor Bob Pohlmann
Mayor Allen Green
Also Present: Kenneth W. Parker, City Manager
Margaret T. Roberts, City Attorney
Robin Fenwick, Deputy City Clerk
4. Discussion relating to Sports in the City
Mr. Parker gave background regarding the topic. Susan Lovallo, Parks & Recreation Director, gave the presentation relating to sports in the City. Discussion held relating to the Blazers non-residents being 91%. Susan explained that the Council direction has been to subsidize all youth sports. Vice Mayor Pohlmann is concerned that the Blazers residency is less than 9% Port Orange residents. Susan explained that discussion will be held regarding policy issues.
Mayor Green asked those in attendance to introduce themselves.
Ms. Lovallo continued with a discussion relating to age groups for each sport and the rates being charged at this time. Revenue generated in FY11 was just under $135,000. Youth costs are recovered about 60% each year. 100% cost recovery on adult sports. Ms. Lovallo explained the facility usage for each facility by each sport/organization. Mr. Parker explained the proposal from PAL relating to the backboards. Staff will bring that item forward soon.
Councilman Ford asked if the City is reaching all of the City's youth. Ms. Lovallo said the community is, with the co-sponsors, the YMCA, etc. The City lacks practice fields and large baseball fields for Babe Ruth. Councilman Ford wants to invest in sports for the City, he is committed. Councilman Ford would like to see more neighborhood fields. City and available properties were discussed. Best option is Horizon field, it is city owned already. The second best according to Mr. Parker is the Curaci property, but the City would have to buy more land. Councilman Ford wants to see a major sports complex on the east side of the City.
Councilman Kennedy asked about the revenues vs. costs. Ms. Lovallo explained the differential in the revenues vs. costs. Councilman Kennedy feels the City needs to do more but wonders how. Fees are already higher than most in the county.
Vice Mayor Pohlmann gave kudos to the Parks division. He supports subsidizing the City's youth sports. He disagrees with Councilman Ford about the fields being on the west side. He feels there are more fields on the east side. He would like to see a gym on the west side as Ms. Lovallo discussed. He supports 90foot fields for the older boys’ baseball and neighborhood fields. He thinks Council should prioritize. He supports spending some money to get the priorities done.
Councilman Burnette is concerned about community identity. He feels there are a lot of our youth playing sports in other cities because of price and/or quality. He agrees open space is needed. He wants Council to think about grass infields for ball fields. He wants Council to be sensitive to the price factor. He'd like to see outside basketball courts as well as outdoor racquetball courts with 4 walls. He doesn't like that the high school soccer teams go to New Smyrna Beach to play. He'd love to see them play in Port Orange. He agrees and wants to see future analysis.
Councilman Ford wants the Parks department to bring back priorities and costs for Council to consider.
Ms. Lovallo gave a report of Babe Ruth transition.
Mayor Green asked for public comments.
John Cameron, Parks and Recreation board member, advised Council that he sees funds as an issue. He urges Council to help pay for the items discussed tonight.
Jack Wiles, President of the Parks and Recreation board, advised Council that documents are in the process for the foundation.
Vince Crandle, Blazers softball, addressed the demographics of Port Orange players. He says the Port Orange kids are behind because the City doesn't offer fast pitch softball. He'd be willing to put together a "farm" team to help develop Port Orange girls. He gave numbers of economic impact for 2010, which was $750,000 to Port Orange. Vice Mayor Pohlmann asked if there is a plan in the future for fast pitch softball in Port Orange. Ms. Lovallo said the City has gone to 100% fast pitch this season.
Mayor Allen Green
Kenneth W. Parker, City Manager