Employment Opportunities Event Calendar
Pay Online Pay Utility Bill
Town Logo

Park Board Meeting Minutes and Recordings 2020

Agendas

01-21-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
02-18-2020 Park Board Meeting Canceled
03-17-2020 Park Board Meeting Canceled
04-21-2020 Park Board Meeting Canceled
05-19-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
06-16-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
09-15-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
10-20-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
11-12-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
11-17-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf
12-15-2020 Park Board Agenda.pdf

Meeting Minutes

01-21-2020 Park Board

January 21, 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Bradtke called the St. John Park Board Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, January 21, 2020, at 7:11 p.m.

ROLL CALL:

Members present: Michael Moffitt; John Rainwater; Melissa Stefanko, Vice President; and Frank Bradtke, President. Also Present: Chip Sobek, Park and Recreation Superintendent, and Wayne Pondinas and Michael Schilling Town Council Co-Liaisons.

ELECTION OF OFFICERS:

President:

Ms. Stefanko nominated Frank Bradtke for President; Mr. Rainwater seconded the nomination. The board voted unanimously to elect Mr. Bradtke President.

Vice President:

Mr. Rainwater nominated Ms. Stefanko for Vice President; Mr. Bradtke seconded the motion. The board voted unanimously to elect Ms. Stefanko Vice President.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Rainwater made a motion to approve the December 17, 2019 minutes; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

NEW BUSINESS:

A. Contract Renewal for Pond Treatments by McNamara Aquatics
Mr. Rainwater made a motion to renew the contract for McNamara Aquatics; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
B. Contract Renewals for Lisa Knott and Sherie Shields
Mr. Rainwater made a motion to renew the contracts for Lisa Knott and Sherie Shields; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously
C. Spring Programs and Fees
Mr. Rainwater made motion to approve the spring programs and fees; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
D. Review Budget and Docket by Clerk-Treasurer’s Office
Mr. Bradtke asked the board to defer this matter since Ms. Hernandez was not going to be able to attend the meeting. Mr. Rainwater made a motion to defer; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
E. Review Applications for Park Maintenance Position
Mr. Bradtke stated that the board wished to have more time to review and discuss the submitted applications and entertained a motion to defer. Mr. Rainwater made a motion to defer; Mr. Moffit seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

(Councilman Pondinas read a prepared remark regarding this position. Said remark is attached hereto and made a part thereof as Exhibit No. 2020-01-21-PB.)

OLD BUSINESS:

None was had.

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:

None was had.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:

Mr. Rainwater made a motion to pay the bills in the amount of $12,835.04; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

ANY AND ALL:

Councilman Schilling stated that the position for a Park’s General Maintenance Foreman was created over a year ago and that this is simply an internal transfer.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Rainwater made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously. Mr. Bradtke adjourned the meeting at 7:28 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Park Board

01-21-2020 Park Board Exhibit.pdf
02-18-2020 Park Board Meeting Canceled
03-17-2020 Park Board Meeting Canceled
04-21-2020 Park Board Meeting Canceled
05-19-2020 Park Board

May 19, 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Bradtke called the St. John Park Board Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, May 19, 2020, at 6:38 p.m., which was attended both on site and virtually, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Members present: Mike Bouvat; Michael Moffitt; Melissa Stefanko, Vice President; and Frank Bradtke, President. Also Present: Craig Phillips, Town Manager; and Wayne Pondinas, Town Council Liaison.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion for the approval of minutes. Ms. Stefanko made a motion to approve the minutes of January 21, 2020; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

NEW BUSINESS:

A. Approve renewal of the Keilman Field Agreement
Mr. Bradtke asked that Mr. Phillips give a summary on each of the new agenda items.

Mr. Phillips advised that this agreement has an annual renewal wherein we pay $250 to Mrs. Keilman for the use of her property for the southernmost ballfield at Civic Park.

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion. Ms. Stefanko made a motion to approve renewing the lease agreement with Mrs. Keilman; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

B. Ratify National Flag Football Agreement
Mr. Phillips advised that Mr. Sobek had signed the agreement with National Flag Football before his retirement and that the board needs to ratify the same. Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion. Mr. Bouvat made a motion to ratify the agreement with National Flag Football; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

C. Approve Port-a-potty Contract
Mr. Bradtke advised that two companies submitted bids, Premier, who would be new, and Service Sanitation, who we have used in the past.

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to award Service Sanitation the contract to provide port-a-potties for this year; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

D. Approve Summer Workers
Mr. Phillips advised that the Town Council approved an additional appropriation in February for the addition of summer workers for park maintenance and upkeep. The Town would like to hire up to six employees, four college students, who would work up to 40 hours a week, and two high school students, who would work up to 20 hours per week. Mr. Phillips noted that an additional appropriation may be needed.

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion to approve hiring of the six summer workers, with the additional funding that the Council will approve and with the final job offer selection to be made by the Town Manager. Ms. Stefanko made the motion; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

E. Discuss/Approve Programs and Fees
Mr. Phillips advised that the summer programs and fees are typically discussed earlier in the year; however, that didn’t take place this year due to the pandemic; so he is wanting to know what the Park Board would like to do for the summer programs for this year. He further advised that Chip Sobek had been making connections prior to his retirement for summer opportunities, but July 4 may be the earliest we may be allowed to offer those activities and be prepared.

Discussion ensued.

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion to approve the programs and fees pending the final determinations and discussions with the Town Manager and individual providers. Ms. Stefanko made the motion; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

F. Community Development Block Grant for Prairie West and Founders Parks Update
Mr. Phillips summarized the CDBG Grant for the Board. This year we are applying for $15,000 in funds to do an expansion to the parking facility and slight reroute of the pathway at Prairie West Park, with the balance of the $250,000 project cost coming from Park Impact Fee funds. We also are asking for $60,456 in funds to construct parking , striping, and a portion of the pathway for ADA access at Founders Park for a total project of approximately $500,000 with the remainder of that coming from the Park Impact Fee funds and other grant funds that are available. Mr. Phillips advised that the Public Hearings for the grants will be held at Lake County in June.
G. Parks Superintendent Position Update
Mr. Phillips advised that we received a number of applications, and by statute, the Park Board would make the selection of the individual to be hired for the position. He recommended the Park Board have an executive session to review the applications. Mr. Phillips noted that they may want to start with telephonic or web-conference interviews and narrow the list down for in-person interviews.

Mr. Bradtke noted that there are many applicants for the position and stated that it may be helpful for Mr. Phillips to go through and weed out the first round of those who didn’t meet the qualifications and reduce it to a few candidates who best meet the criteria. Mr. Moffitt concurred. Mr. Bouvat stated that he would like to review them all the applications. Mr. Bradtke responded that the applications would be sent to the members for review.

Mr. Phillips explained that there are a few applicants who applied but do not have the required qualifications. There are two other levels of applicants left, those who have been park directors and those who have been recreation supervisors. The Board will want to decide if they want someone who has been a director or somebody who may be rising through the ranks that might be a good candidate.

OLD BUSINESS:

None was had.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion to pay the bills in the amounts of $21,800.94 for February 2020, $19,533.15 for March 2020, $29,121.10 for April 2020, and $26,210.93 for May 2020. Mr. Moffitt made the motion; Mr. Bouvat seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

ANY AND ALL:

Mr. Bradtke advised that Board that St. John Baseball contacted him and informed him that they would be installing mounted sanitizer stations in the dugouts.

Mr. Bradtke noted that they have received communication from the Lake Hills Homeowners Association, and they would like to install fountains in Golf Lake and Lindsey Park. They are covering the cost completely. There is already a breaker by Golf Lake, so they only need to connect into the power. The Homeowners Association will pay for the connection and the ongoing use of power there. At Lindsey Park, they have to bore about 30 feet under one of the walking paths, which will be done at their expense, and they will maintain the fountain and electricity under the HOA fees.

Mr. Phillips advised that going forward, as a standard process for anyone requesting the use of Town land or Park land, we should have a standard agreement so the requestor understands that they are responsible for the costs incurred, including restoring the disturbed area back to the way it was. Mr. Bradtke responded that he believes there is a standard agreement already.

Mr. Bradtke entertained a motion to approve the installation of two fountains, one at Lindsey Park Lake and one at Golf Lake, at the expense of the HOA contingent upon the signed agreement being in place. Ms. Stefanko made the motion; Mr. Bouvat seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

Mr. Phillips asked if the Board had received an email from Mr. Joe Bonato with St. John Baseball requesting additional improvements at Civic Park and Heartland Park.

Mr. Bradtke asked if this request is something that they are doing at their expense. Mr. Phillips responded that they would be doing some of the items at their expense; however, they are asking the Town to cover the expenses of other improvements. Mr. Phillips noted that he would address this with the Town Council since Civic Park is under the Town Council’s purview. Mr. Bradtke recommended putting that on hold until more information is had.

Mr. Bradtke introduced discussion for a new park near the soccer fields. Mr. Phillips commented that Mr. Sobek suggested installing this year’s new playground at the soccer fields since they are heavily used, there is no place for children to play while they are there, and there aren’t many opportunities for people to have access to a playground in The Gates. Mr. Phillips offered to get quotes for the next meeting for the Board’s consideration.

Ms. Abernathy noted that she had received a message that the Parks Board doesn’t own that park. Mr. Phillips responded that the Park Board can still pay for improvements if they work with the entity that owns the property. He further responded that he was not aware that the Park Board didn’t own that land and that he would look into it.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Mr. Bradtke noted that public comments were submitted prior to the meeting. The following were read into the record.

Megan Tilton (address not provided) “Do you know if they are still going to start on the park soon off of 101st.”

Mary Gruszczyk (11720 West 94th Place): (From February) I, along with many residents and non-residents, use the walking path in Prairie West Park. After the few inches of snow we received last week, I noticed that the walking path had been plowed. Fantastic. I love to walk outside, and now I can continue walking outside. Please thank the employee who thought about us all who use the path. Hope he can continue to keep it plowed when he is able.

Patricia Tonkovich (9994 Olcott Avenue): I wish to compliment how great Heartland Park looks. I drive by several times a week, and all your hard work is noticeable. I love the different color baseballs, and the sign looks fresh and new. I’m sure our residents are happy with your improvements.

Steven Steiff (address not provided): To whom it may concern, I hope I’m sending this to the right person or that you can get it to the right person. My daughters have played softball in St. John for years, and I want to say the improvements to the park are amazing. The girls often get overshadowed by baseball, so the softball added to the sign is awesome. The park is cleaner than I’ve ever seen it. All that overgrowth is gone, and it brings so much to the whole area. I frequently walk my dog along the park. And please, whoever’s keeping the bag stands full, deserves a raise. Ha ha. At this time, everyone complaining, I really think we should praise what is good, and the improvements to Heartland Park are awesome. Keep it up St. John.

Mr. Bradtke noted that there are three that go together regarding Larimer Park.

Michelle Metzger (address not provided): I have been attending the Parks’ meetings, the last one being in October. I feel like Larimer Park has been pushed to the side for a long time. The first year I moved in, they ripped out a big slide, a merry-go-round, and four swings, and replaced it with nothing. They said they were going to redo the baseball field, playground, and basketball court. The baseball field looks the same, and now we have a park that isn’t safe for young kids and a basketball court you should see for yourself. They said not to worry, that early spring they were going to redo it, and here we are at the end of May and nothing has been done. I understand COVID, but there’s nothing slowing down construction right now. They promised and said that we will be getting basketball courts in the spring. When will the construction start? My boys are looking forward to shooting some hoops.

Lisa Eckerman (9437 Woodland Drive): I was told that nothing was mentioned about the basketball courts at Larimer. I talked to the Town Manager’s assistant, and she said nothing was ever mentioned. Well, she was wrong. It was in the meeting last September. Look at my attachment. Please let me know what I should do.

Katy Slager (9417 Woodland Drive): I attended a couple of the meetings in the fall. I was told that Larimer Park was going to be getting new basketball courts, that they were getting quotes from companies so that could be happening in the spring. I have not seen anything or heard that anything is going on, to be happening with it. I didn’t even see it on the agenda for tonight. I just want to know what’s going on with it. I would also like to know why there is no concreate path from the parking lot to the playground. It’s gravel. We just got a new handicap neighbor, and she cannot roll her wheelchair or walker through the gravel. Something needs to be done about this so everyone can enjoy the park. I have attached some photos so you can see how horrible the basketball court looks at the gravel pathway. Let’s take care of the old parks before we start putting in the new ones. Thank you. Thank you to Gabe, the Town worker that came out Monday and spruced up Larimer Park sign and fixed the light.

Mr. Bradtke noted that these three letters are due to an issue that came up in the fall, we were going to address it in the spring, but this is our first meeting since January. Ms. Stefanko asked if the new Park Board Members have a copy of the five-year plan. Mr. Bradtke stated that they will be getting one.

Ms. Abernathy noted that when Ms. Eckerman called, she had told Ms. Eckerman that it was mentioned at the September meeting and was going to be discussed again in the spring for work to begin. I further told her that I did not see it on the January agenda and that a meeting was not had since. Mr. Bradtke thanked Ms. Abernathy for answering that and confirmed that the Board had agreed to discuss it in the spring.

ADJOURNMENT:

Ms. Stefanko made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye
Mr. Bradtke Aye

Mr. Bradtke adjourned the meeting at 7:19 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Park Board

06-16-2020 Park Board

June 16, 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Ms. Stefanko called the St. John Park Board Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, June 16, 2020, at 6:36 p.m., which was attended both onsite and virtually, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Members present: Mike Bouvat; Michael Moffitt; and Melissa Stefanko, Vice President. Also Present: Craig Phillips, Town Manager, and Wayne Pondinas and Michael Schilling, Town Council Co-Liaisons. A quorum was attained.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Ms. Stefanko entertained a motion for the approval of minutes. Mr. Moffitt commented that the Board requested a second port-a-potty at Heartland Park at the last meeting, stated that he felt it should have been noted in the minutes, and asked why it had not been delivered as yet. Mr. Phillips stated that he would follow up on it and ensure it gets delivered.

Mr. Bouvat made a motion to approve the minutes of May 19, 2020; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

MATTER OF RESIGNATION:

Ms. Stefanko entertained a motion to accept the resignation of Frank Bradtke. Mr. Bouvat made the motion; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

ELECTION OF NEW BOARD PRESIDENT:

Ms. Stefanko entertained any nominations for president.

Mr. Moffitt nominated Michael Bouvat; Mr. Bouvat seconded his motion. Hearing no further nominations, Ms. Stefanko called for a roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Nay

Mr. Phillips said, "So that's 2 ayes and 1 nay for the election of Mike Bouvat as president, so it looks like Mr. Bouvat is elected as president."

Mr. Bouvat stated that with that announcement, he would take over the meeting and would like to amend the agenda to use the one he sent to the Park Board Members previously. He further stated that under the circumstances with the Park Board, with the passing of one member and the resignation of another, he would like to elect the other officers.

Mr. Phillips advised that the standing officers remain in place.

Mr. Bouvat stated that it is pretty much a new board and that he would like to elect a new board as the other members are no longer present.

Mr. Phillips recommended that they hold off on this action since it was not on the previous agenda. Mr. Bouvat said it is on his agenda.

Mr. Bouvat passed the gavel to Mr. Moffitt and nominated him to be the vice president. Mr. Moffitt seconded the nomination and passed the gavel back to Mr. Bouvat. Mr. Bouvat called for a roll-call vote.

Ms. Stefanko asked for clarification if members were nominating themselves as she cannot distinguish the same by the voices. Mr. Phillips responded that they were not nominating themselves and advised that a second is not required for a nomination.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Nay

Mr. Phillips said, "That's 2 ayes and 1 nay for the election of Mike Moffitt as vice president."

PRESENTATION:

Mr. Tm Arvanitis of Northern Indiana Pop Warner gave a presentation. He spoke about the history of the Tri-Town Pop Warner Football program, accolades that had been won, scholarships that had been awarded, and fund-raising events that had occurred. He passed out information to the members on their flag football league.

(Note: Mr. Arvanitis spoke away from the microphone at times, making what he said indiscernible.)

He introduced Mr. Rudy Monterrubio, who is the president of Tri-Town Pop Warner. Mr. Arvanitis spoke briefly about National Flag Football gaining popularity. He asked the Park Board to allow Pop Warner to advertise their program as well as National Flag Football, who is out of Indianapolis. Mr. Arvanitis advised that National Flag Football is a for-profit entity, and the Tri-Town Pop Warner Flag Football League is a not-for-profit entity. He asked for an equal opportunity from St. John for Tri-Town and Hanover Central Pop Warner to be advertised in the water bills or flyers as well.

Mr. Arvanitis stated that they used to be very well attended in St. John until they welcomed National Flag Football in, and he scooped up all the business from St. John, saying, "That's the way it is." He asserted that the gentleman from National Flag Football dismantled their program in St. John, and he would like the Town's help in rebuilding it.

Mr. Bouvat stated that the Park Board would take this matter under advisement and get back with him.

Mr. Arvanitis thanked the Board.

Mr. Moffitt stated that the Board has already approved the program with National Flag Football at the last meeting.

Mr. Pondinas commented that he believes past Parks and Recreation Superintendent Chip Sobek signed a two-year contract with National Flag Football in February.

Mr. Arvanitis remarked that they were turned away by Mr. Sobek and again asked that the Board support their program.

Mr. Schilling asked when the season starts. Mr. Arvanitis responded that football is a year-round sport; they have spring and fall flag football and tackle football.

Mr. Bouvat affirmed that they would take his request under advisement.

NEW BUSINESS:

A. Consider Professional Services Agreement with Westland Bennett
Mr. Bouvat stated that he has been in contact with Attorney David Westland, and he is willing to be the Park Board Attorney. Mr. Bouvat further stated that it is something for the members to consider and discuss in an executive session.

Mr. Bouvat asked Gabe Hernandez, Parks and Recreation General Maintenance Foreman, to come to the podium and surmise what the park activities are.

Mr. Hernandez stated that he is not in the loop on activities, but he could speak to the maintenance that has been being done in the parks, which is what he was hired to do. With the summer help that has been hired, they power washed all the playgrounds and removed the old debris and mold. At Heartland Park, they have painted the main entrance sign, pulled the overgrown bushes out, planted new bushes, added mulch to the mulch beds, trimmed all the trees, pulled weeds that were in the mulch beds, and prepared all the volleyball courts for use. The splash pad is set to be opened on July 6. He stated that he and Mr. Phillips decided that would be the best way to go, given the current situation.

Mr. Hernandez noted that the focus for maintenance this season is trimming trees and bushes, adding mulch, painting signs, and getting the parks back up to where they are supposed to be. They are working on one park at a time. They are currently working in Lake Hills. They have finished trimming the trees at Lindsey Park and cleaned and prepped the volleyball court there as well. They plan on trimming back the bike trails and any low-hanging tree branches that may affect the residents.

Mr. Hernandez stated that he welcomes any park concerns or questions. The more eyes he has, the better he can do his job and get things done for the residents. Mr. Hernandez stated that he ran into the owner of Midwest Ice Arena, and they spoke about possibly having a beanbag league. She said that she could host it and run it. We would take the money for the sign-ups, and she will take care of everything else. Mr. Hernandez doesn't know where we are on programs, but he feels that's a good idea.

Mr. Hernandez voiced some concerns about Larimer Park. He knows that there was some discussion last year in the minutes about fixing up the basketball court at Larimer Park. He doesn't know where the Park Board is on that as yet, but people are asking him about it, and he promised to get back with them on that. The softball field was fixed last year, but there is a drainage issue that was not addressed, so that needs to be fixed again.

Mr. Hernandez stated that Mr. Phillips has been very good about helping him. Whenever he asks him for help, advice, or opinions, he's given him the direction to go, and without Mr. Phillips, he couldn't get the things he really needs to get stuff done.

Mr. Bouvat stated that information is good to know as we have to work together, and he is glad that Mr. Hernandez and Mr. Phillips are doing what you can to get things for our community.

B. Consideration of Summer Programs
Mr. Bouvat stated that they would probably discuss the programs up for consideration in their executive meeting and listed numerous programs that are being considered. They will also consider temporary delegations of administrative duties for park activities and Parks and Recreation daily operations. They will schedule a special meeting during the week of June 22 to finalize the summer board procedure brochure to include offering programs and set fees.

Mr. Bouvat stated that he would like to make a motion to fill the vacancy for the Park Superintendent until such time that someone has been interviewed and fills the position permanently.

Mr. Moffitt asked if Mr. Bouvat is entertaining a motion. Mr. Bouvat responded that he is entertaining a motion to have Gabe Hernandez to fill the Park Superintendent position until that position has been filled. Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Mr. Bouvat called for a roll-call vote.

Mr. Phillips requested confirmation of who made the motion and the second for the motion on the floor. Mr. Moffitt stated that Mr. Bouvat made the motion and that he seconded it. Mr. Bouvat stated that he entertained the motion and that Mr. Moffitt made the motion.

Mr. Phillips asked Mr. Moffitt if he made the motion. Mr. Moffitt stated that he would make the motion. Mr. Phillips asked if Mr. Bouvat seconded the motion. Mr. Bouvat passed the gavel and seconded the motion.

Roll-call vote:

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Nay

Mr. Phillips said, "That is 2 ayes and 1 nay for the temporary appointment of Gabe Hernandez as Parks Superintendent."

C. Consider Additional Cleanings for Port-a-potties
Mr. Phillips advised that due to the COVID-19 situation and the extra responsibilities we have in providing clean facilities, he wanted to ask the Board for permission to do additional cleanings for each unit. The cost for that is an additional $25 per unit per month. There are ten units, making the additional cost $250 per month.

Mr. Moffitt asked if the total number of units includes the extra port-a-potty for Heartland Park. Mr. Phillips responded in the affirmative.

Ms. Stefanko made a motion to amend the contract with Service Sanitation to include the additional cleaning for each unit weekly; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion.

Roll-call vote:

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye

D. Heartland Park Dumpsters
Mr. Moffitt stated that there is a large dumpster and a large recycle dumpster at the park. No one ever uses the recycle bin for recycling, and he would like to get rid of the recycle dumpster and have another full-size trash dumpster there.

Mr. Phillips advised that Mr. Hernandez come back up as it is the Park Superintendent's job to take care of this matter.

Mr. Hernandez asked to address the Park Board Superintendent issue and stated that the position is out of his wheelhouse. While he has no problem doing anything that the Town or the Park Board asks him to do, he enjoys what he is currently doing. He commented that Mr. Phillips' overall experience and knowledge is well-surpassed his, and asserted that Mr. Phillips is more suited to do the preparation and operational terms of those agreements and arranging what programs will be initiated and the terms of those.

Mr. Moffitt stated that the reason they wanted Mr. Hernandez to do it is that they want it to go in any direction at all to get some programs going. He commented that after it was discussed last month, they received an email from Mr. Phillips that he does not want to do any programs.

Mr. Phillips stated that is incorrect; the people who run the programs have stated that they are not interested in doing those programs this year. He further stated that he has reached out to everyone who has put on a program for the Town over the last year. His email to the Board shared the interests of all those who were contacted. He stated that his suggestion was to hold off on having the summer camps this year because of the lack of proper staffing for the extra safety measures and provisions that must be put into place per state requirements. Furthermore, the people who put on those events did not want to do them this year. His email listed all those who did want to participate with modified dates were also listed in the email.

Mr. Bouvat stated that he appreciates Mr. Phillips' efforts, and he hears what Mr. Hernandez is saying, but he would like Mr. Hernandez to be the legs and get some of these things initiated with the beanbags and maybe some other things. He noted that it is obvious that Mr. Phillips and Mr. Hernandez are working together. It doesn't matter who wears the hat because it's only temporary. Mr. Bouvat stated that they won't have an executive session; they will just take things into consideration.

Mr. Phillips advised that if guidance is not given tonight on what is to be done with programs and camps, there will not be time to get the programs together in time for people to be able to register in time for the Fourth of July, and there is only one more month before school starts again.

Mr. Pondinas asked, as a resident, not a Councilman, why a town with 22,000 people have a parks program that just fell apart. We paid a gentleman a good sum of money to run a Parks Department, and we are down to nothing. You can blame it on COVID; you can blame it on whatever you want; but Schererville and Dyer have good programs and are also impacted by COVID. The residents pay taxes and deserve a good Parks Department. To sit here and say all kinds of excuses is not good. Mr. Pondinas asked what the former superintendent did before he resigned.

Mr. Phillips stated that the previous superintendent had been making contacts and trying to put programs together, which is how he was able to make all the connections he has made recently.

Mr. Pondinas informed Mr. Phillips that he isn't blaming him. Mr. Phillips responded that Mr. Pondinas is blaming him, that he is not accepting the blame, and that he is trying to help.

Mr. Phillips commented that he and Mr. Hernandez need guidance on what the Board wants them to do. He noted that St. John does not have the same level of staffing for Parks as Dyer or Schererville do.

Mr. Schilling stated that he is not for Mr. Hernandez running the whole thing right now because the intention was to give the previous superintendent a helper so that he can set the programs up. He obviously left, and Mr. Hernandez is central to the maintenance. To put the park maintenance and the programs on him would be too much. Mr. Schilling said he would rather have them get someone part-time for the programs if they want someone to run programs. Mr. Schilling said that there might be a member of the staff who may want to do it.

Ms. Hernandez, Clerk-Treasurer, stated that her office runs Christmas in The Park and other events, and they would like to get a movie in the park up in coordination with the Park Board. She has staff in mind that she feels would jump at the chance to help with putting the programs together. Ms. Hernandez stated that while she was at the baseball fields over the weekend, several residents approached her requesting that there be sand volleyball. Perhaps, others can step up and run it this year instead of the person who cannot do it this year.

Ms. Hernandez offered the assistance of one of her employees to get some of those programs off the ground.

Mr. Schilling commented that park maintenance is full-time work, and so is running the programs. Mr. Phillips doesn't have the time to do all the programs and be the Town Manager. In the meantime, if someone wants to step up and set up the programs, he would rather see that.

Mr. Bouvat said that they weren't trying to bog him down. He's doing a great job and brought up the beanbag tournament, so it seems as if he has the vibe of what the Town wants.

Ms. Hernandez recommended Jill Ciechna, who works in her office on a part-time basis, to step in and assist getting these programs off the ground with the assist of Mr. Phillips and Mr. Hernandez.

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion to have Jill Ciechna set up some of the programs.

Ms. Stefanko made the motion; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion.

Roll-call vote:

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye

Mr. Phillips stated that the programs that can be run by individuals are a great idea but advised that the summer camps would be much more difficult. He asserted that we don't have the staffing and resources that are necessary to run summer camps under the guidelines set forth by the state. He noted that there are only a few other towns that are running summer camps, and they have much larger park staffing than we do.

Ms. Hernandez recommended letting Jill take do some research, put a list together, and present it to them at the next meeting, and they can select which events they want to have.

Mr. Moffitt stated that we need to get some of these going because, by next month, we're already in August.

Discussion ensued regarding the various programs that would be easier to set up and move forward with such as sand volleyball, beanbags, movie in the park, and exercise in the park, Midwest Ice Arena events, and some other programs that are the more manageable events.

Mr. Bouvat entertained a more specific motion to have Jill Ciechna proceed with the planning of sand volleyball, beanbags, movie in the park, and exercise in the park.

Mr. Moffitt made the motion; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion.

Roll-call vote:

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye

Ms. Hernandez thanked the Park Board as a resident for getting some programs going and stated that it would make many of the residents very happy.

E. Budget Process Presentation
Ms. Hernandez presented the Parks and Recreation Budget Process to the Board. Fund 204 is the operating fund, which covers payroll and benefits, day-to-day operational supplies, and operational services and charges expenses. Fund 473 is the Park Impact Fund, which is for capital expenditures, which covers capital outlay for buildings, improvements, and equipment.

Ms. Hernandez explained the purchasing policy, noting that the department heads sign for purchases up to $1500; the department head and town manager would sign a Request to Purchase (RTP) for purchases from $1500.01 to $4000; and Requests for Purchase from $4000.01 to $150,000 will be presented to the Park Board who will sign the RTP(s) approving the expenditures after a majority vote approving the same in a public meeting.

Ms. Hernandez explained the docket process to the Board and reviewed the end-of-month reports and the annual report from 2019. She then explained the budgeting process, which starts in August, including budget estimates and anticipated revenues. Ultimately, the Department of Local Government and Finance has the final say in the approval of the budgets and can accept, cut, or change the submitted budgets.

Ms. Hernandez explained the current fund standings and reviewed the disbursements and revenues to date for Fund 204 and Fund 473.

Resume Heartland Park Dumpster Agenda Item

Mr. Bouvat stated that Mr. Hernandez would remain in the position that they voted on earlier and turned the floor back over to Mr. Moffitt, who had left off with the dumpsters at Heartland Park.

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve replacing the recycling dumpster with a full-sized trash dumpster; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion.

Roll-call vote:

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:

Mr. Pondinas thanked Mr. Arvanitis for his presentation and for his time as a police officer.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion to pay the bills in the amounts of $33,440.24 for June 2020. Mr. Moffitt made the motion; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion.

Roll-call vote:

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Robert Vizdal (8173 West 102nd Avenue): I back up to the soccer fields over there in The Gates of St. John. The reason I'm here is, I see you guys got a lot of money and everything, and one of the things I'd like to request is another park for The Gates of St. John. Right now, there's one park in The Gates, and it is at the Christian school on a hundred and – between 105th and 107th and Park Place, and the Town actually owns a lot that is two doors away from me. And I've got some pictures of it; I could show you where it's at. It's right on the corner of 102nd and Pearwood Drive.

Up until last year, there were weeds. It was just weeds. My house was the seventh house on the block, and it was just weeds in there until last year. As the whole property got built up, and everything – it's right at the – 102nd and Pearwood Drive. It goes right into the soccer fields, okay, and starting last year, the Town put straw down there. And Gabe was just out there the other day cutting the grass that's growing in there now, but what would be better yet is if you could put a park in that area. And I'll tell you why: With only one park in the entire Gates, the amount of kids that are living in that area – and hey, I don't have young kids anymore, you know, best I got is grandkids coming over, and everything, once in a while. But on our block alone, we went from seven homes, when we first moved in to now, there's 25 homes, and there's going to be 40 just on 102nd Avenue, not counting 101st Place or the other side streets over there. So just in the Meadow Gates, on my block alone, we went from maybe about ten kids two years ago – there's about 30 kids right now, and there are still about another 15-20 homes to be built.

The closest park's a mile away, all right. These kids got no place else to play. They're playing out on the street. I hate to see any of that stuff happen, and I'd rather see them in a little park. And that – that land is a perfect place to put one. You already got the soccer fields right behind it, and to just make that into a park – eventually, I figured you'd have to put a park somewhere because every – the one park that's the – by the Christian school, everything south of there, from 107th – say 105th/107th going south, those are all senior duplexes, pretty much, so there's nobody there with kids. All the kids are going from that area going north to – towards 101st "street." Any of the kids that live farther north in The Gates have to go a very long area to get – you know, they'd have to go almost a mile just to get to the closest park. And – and they're not going to walk that far. So it was a suggestion. I hope that you guys would consider it, and that's what I really came here to say today. Thank you.

The Board asked if that is what was discussed last month. Mr. Phillips advised that there is some confusion about who owns The Gates of St. John soccer fields, which is owned by the Town. That is different than the property he discussed. This property is adjacent to that. We were talking about the potential to install playground equipment at The Gates of St. John soccer fields.

Ms. Hernandez stated that the Park Board had approved a park in a different location in The Gates on Chestnut Cove and 105th. It was going to be deeded by the developer. The deed did not come in a timely fashion, so the Park Board tabled it. If the Town or the Park Board owns the property, it is a great location for a park. She believes there may be prior approval for up to $150,000 available for a park in The Gates of St. John and will check into it for them. She commented that they might want to do a bigger park that the original toddler park that was discussed. Ms. Hernandez stated that they might be able to let Pop Warner rent out the use of the soccer fields for additional revenue.

Mr. Bouvat asked Ms. Hernandez to get that information for them. Ms. Hernandez agreed to the same.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Ms. Stefanko seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Bouvat Aye
Mr. Moffitt Aye
Ms. Stefanko Aye

Mr. Bouvat adjourned the meeting at 8:02 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Park Board

07-21-2020 Park Board

July 21, 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Bouvat called the St. John Park Board Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, July 21 2020, at 6:34 p.m., which was attended by all members onsite, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Members present: Johnny Boersma; Michael Moffitt; and Mike Bouvat, Acting President. Also Present: Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Wayne Pondinas, Town Council Liaison; and Nicole Bennet, Westland & Bennet. A quorum was attained.

MATTER OF RESIGNATION:

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion to accept the resignation of Ms. Stefanko. Mr. Moffitt made the motion; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

ELECTION OF NEW BOARD OFFICERS:

Mr. Bouvat entertained nominations for president. Mr. Boersma nominated Michael Bouvat; Mr. Moffitt seconded the nomination. Having no further nominations, the Board voted unanimously to elect Mr. Bouvat as the Park Board President.

Mr. Bouvat entertained nominations for vice president. Mr. Boersma nominated Michael Moffitt; Mr. Moffitt seconded the nomination. Having no further nominations, the Board voted unanimously to elect Mr. Moffitt as the Park Board Vice President.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve the minutes of June 16, 2020; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

NEW BUSINESS:

A. Consider Basketball Court Repair/Replacement Proposals
Mr. Jim Anderson with Flex Courts was present by telephone. Mr. Bouvat asked Mr. Anderson to give insight as why Flex Court would be better than asphalt.

Mr. Anderson said that flex court is a tile system that is laid atop of existing asphalt or concrete surfaces. The benefits of this surface over concrete or asphalt are once the courts are put down, they are essentially maintenance free for 16-20 years and they come with a 16-year manufacturer’s warranty. He stated that if the surface underneath starts to crack or deteriorate, the tile system will be forgiving with that as long as the cracks stay even with each other, noting that they typically do. He described the tiles and commented that they have flex to them so those playing on the court receive only about 50% of the shock. They are more comfortable to play on and have 16 different colors that can be chosen.

Mr. Anderson commented that manufacturer’s defects, they would cover the labor for that work. Typically if there is a defect with the manufacturing, it will show up in the first six months or so. He noted that there really is not any studies or data on injuries or slipping. For courts that need a small amount of repair before installation, they will fill low areas and cracks with a flex filler and then lay the tiles. Since it is a modular system, if something comes up where an area needs repair underneath the tiles, those tiles can be popped up and laid back down after any repairs are made. Mr. Anderson advised that each court would take approximately two to three days to complete.

Mr. Bouvat asked Gabe Hernandez to comment on the Flex Court System. Mr. Hernandez stated that Civic Park only has cracks but is still playable. Mr. Anderson recommended a crack fill only as there is an overlay on it. Mr. Hernandez advised that the only court he is concerned with using Flex Court on is Larimer Park because the sub-base is garbage. Mr. Hernandez noted that with the asphalt, they don’t do the basketball hoops, so they will have to go through someone else to install those. Putting a sports coating on the asphalt will stop water from getting into and heaving up the asphalt.

Mr. Bouvat recommended moving forward with asphalt for Larimer Park in the amount of $27,783 and the Flex Court for Civic Park in the amount of $20,471 and Lancer Park in the amount of $20,970 and entertained a motion for the same.

Mr. Moffitt made the motion to approve St. John Paving to repair/replace the basketball courts at Larimer Park in the amount of $27,783 and approve Flex Courts repair/replace the basketball courts at Civic Park in the amount of $20,471 and Lancer Park in the amount of $20,970, including new backboards for the courts. Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

B. Consider Offer of Employment – Park Superintendent Position
Mr. Bouvat advised that Mr. Tyler McLead stated that he is willing to accept the offer rendered verbally and entertained a motion for the same. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to hire Tyler McLead as the Parks & Recreation Superintendent and to authorize the Town Manager to execute a formal offer of employment for the same; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
C. Consider Professional Services Agreement – Westland & Bennett, PC
Mr. Boersma made a motion to approve the Professional Services Agreement through December 31, 2020, with Nicole Bennet of Westland & Bennett, PC, and to authorize the Park Board President to execute the same; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Bouvat gave a brief introduction of Ms. Bennett and asked her to join them at the dais. He turned the floor over to her to say a few words. Ms. Bennett stated that she is pleased to be here and be a part of the projects that are being proposed here. She noted that it has been a pleasure to serve St. John since the beginning of this year and to proceed forward in a further capacity. She thanked the Board for the opportunity.

D. Consider Summer Volleyball League Participation Fees
Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve the Summer Volleyball League participation fee of $45 for residents and $50 for non-residents, which is being held from July 15, 2020, through August 16, 2020; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
E. Consider Payment to Volleyball Officials
Mr. Boersma made a motion to approve payment to the volleyball officials, from July 15, 2020, through August 16, 2020, in the amount of $15 per game for the 2020 season; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
F. Consider Payment to Great Lakes Recreation
Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve payment to Great Lakes Recreation in the amount of $5,285.00 for a new aquatic pad control at Heron Lake Splash Pad; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
G. Consider Payment to Fence Masters
Mr. Boersma made a motion to approve payment to Fence Masters in the amount of $6,130.00 for replacement fencing and a dumpster enclosure at Heartland Park; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
H. Consider Approval of Movie in the Park Event – August 7, 2020
Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve the Movie in the Park Event on August 7, 2020; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

OLD BUSINESS:

None was had.

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:

Mr. Moffitt thanked Mr. Phillips for getting the additional dumpster and porta-potties, which helped out.

Mr. Bouvat stated that the Board is new and has been challenged without a superintendent. He thanked them for their efforts in trying to make something happen and taking the initiative. He highlighted some of the activities going on, such as the beanbag league, volleyball, and Movie in the Park. He and others thanked the Town Council, Liaison Wayne Pondinas, Gabe Hernandez, Beth Hernandez and members of her staff for their help.

Mr. Phillips advised that as a matter of procedure, the Park Board will need permission from the Town Council to do the improvements in Civic Park. He advised that to keep Founders Park on track as to not risk the grant funding associated with the project. He advised that K&S Engineers submitted a quote for geotechnical work in the amount of $5750 plus an additional $1250 for any damage mitigation that may need to be done for damage caused to the neighboring property. Mr. Phillips requested approval for the contract in an amount not to exceed $7000 to be paid from the Park Impact Fee funds.

Mr. Pondinas asked if we were getting the grant from the county. Mr. Phillips stated that we have the DNR grant from the state for Founders Park. The grant from the county is a separate grant that we are trying for that would offset some of the cost. We are hoping to receive $60,456 for Founders Park from the Community Development Block Grant as well as $15,000 for Prairie West Park. Mr. Phillips stated that the proposed soil borings are one boring to a depth of 20 feet below the proposed shelter and two borings to a depth of 30 feet beneath the proposed boardwalk structure, as well as some other elements.

Mr. Pondinas asked about doing the needed soil borings at Prairie West Park in conjunction with Founders Park. Mr. Phillips stated that it would put a hold on Founders Park doing it that way. The estimates are underway for Prairie West Park, and he is hoping to come to the next Park Board meeting with a request for the soil borings at Prairie West Park.

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve a contract with K&S in an amount not to exceed $7000 for the soil boring work at Founders Park; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Phillips stated that he was approached by a property owner regarding possibly purchasing a portion of Edgewood Park and the resident would like to possibly have a discussion with the Board.

Mr. Pondinas stated that the water park went out of commission for a short time. He thanked those who were involved in getting that repaired. He thanked the residents for their patience. The parks are getting mulched and taken care of. He thanked Mr. Hernandez and the seasonal workers for all their hard work.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:

Mr. Boersma made a motion to pay the bills in the amount of $46,261.97; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Boersma made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Bouvat adjourned the meeting at 7:26 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Park Board

08-18-2020 Park Board

August 18, 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Bouvat called the St. John Park Board Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, August 18, 2020, at 6:55 p.m., which was attended by all members onsite, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Members present: Johnny Boersma, Vice-President; Patrick Connelly; Michael Moffitt; and Mike Bouvat, President. Also Present: Tyler McLead, Parks & Recreation Superintendent; Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Wayne Pondinas, Town Council Liaison; and Nicole Bennett, Westland & Bennett. A quorum was attained.

Mr. Bouvat formally welcomed Mr. Boersma to the Park Board.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Boersma made a motion to approve the minutes of July 21, 2020; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by the three members present at the time of the vote.

NEW BUSINESS:

A. Toni Duddy – Community Garden Project
Ms. Toni Duddy stated that she is present to discuss a proposal that had been submitted to the Park Board for “Heartland Park Family Gardens” by Marla Dernay, Veronica Williams, and herself.

(A copy of the proposal and Ms. Duddy’s prepared remarks are attached hereto and made a part hereof as Exhibit Nos. 2020-08-18-PB1 and 2020-08-18-PB2.)

Mr. Boersma commented that the proposed area is used for little children to play soccer and that he thinks the north section of the animal shelter would be more fitting. Ms. Duddy asked if that area would still be accessible from the parking lot. Mr. Boersma responded in the affirmative.

Mr. Pondinas advised that the location they are talking about is a separate parcel of property that is Town property and not Park property. Mr. Pondinas agreed that the area Mr. Boersma mentioned might be a better idea.

Mr. Boersma asked who would be responsible for the liability insurance. Ms. Duddy responded that the Town would be responsible.

Mr. Moffitt asked who would build it. Ms. Duddy responded that the Town would do the tilling and leveling of the soil and bringing in the water lines for spigots inside the garden. She noted that the bullet points on the first page of the proposal show what they assume would be administered by the Town.

Discussion ensued regarding the potential location of the proposed garden and possible future expansion.

(Mr. Connelly entered the meeting.)

Mr. Pondinas noted that he and Gerry Swets, Town Council President, had recommended the property to them, and they want to find a spot that would be, more or less, permanent. Mr. Pondinas stated that he would like to see some commitment and some money committed to this project so that the Town does not have to put in so much money.

Mr. Boersma recommended getting sponsorships for the boxes. Ms. Duddy responded that the committee members thought that the rental fee could cover the cost of the water and maintenance.

The Park Board Members asked questions about who would be in charge of monitoring and administering the community gardens. The Community Garden System Committee Members responded that those answers should be in the ordinance. Mr. Boersma volunteered to be a garden enforcer.

Mr. Bouvat stated that they need to get more information and recommended that they speak with someone like Mr. McLead for guidance in the interim. Mr. Pondinas stated that someone from the Town Council should be involved because Mr. McLead is new, and Gerry Swets and he initiated the negotiations.

NEW BUSINESS:

Mr. Boersma formally introduced Tyler McLead as the Parks & Recreation Superintendent and asked him to say a few words.

Mr. McLead thanked the Park Board for the opportunity to serve St. John. Previously he worked for Goshen for two years and Syracuse for seven years for their parks departments. He stated that Mr. Hernandez and the summer staff have been outstanding.

Mr. Bouvat introduced Mr. Patrick Connelly as the newest Park Board Member and welcomed him.

Mr. Boersma stated that he believes they are going to be getting one more member. Mr. Pondinas asked if they’ve spoken with the attorney about that. Mr. Bouvat responded that they are looking into adding a fifth member to the Park Board.

Attorney Bennett advised that by state statute, the Park Board must be a minimum of four people for purposes of voting. The Board may have a liaison from the Town Council as well as from the school town; however, they are not voting members. To add a fifth voting member would require a change to the ordinance that would require action by the legislative body.

OLD BUSINESS:

A. Basketball Court Repair and Restoration at Civic, Lancer, and Larimer Parks.
Mr. McLead advised that Flex Court has received the deposit and so Civic Park and Lancer Park and should be scheduled to be completed soon. Larimer Park should be on St. John Paving’s schedule soon, and T&J Landscaping recommended to have the basketball court repairs completed first and then do the baseball field. St. John Paving has received the contract.
B. Heron Lake Splash Pad
Mr. McLead advised that the Heron Lake Splash Pad maintenance continues to be an issue. There was a water main break that flooded the conduit and damaged the new controller that was just replaced. Mr. Phillips has reached out to the insurance company to see if they will help replace that. Thanks to Mr. Hernandez and his crew, the splash pad is operational again.

Mr. Moffitt noted that they were told at the last meeting to install the hoops after the basketball court surfaces are completed.

C. Heartland Park Fencing and Enclosure
Mr. McLead advised that they received another quote for the dumpster enclosure from Reeves Fence Services that is a little lower, and he would like them to review that quote.

Mr. Moffitt requested confirmation that they had already approved Fence Masters for that project. Mr. McLead confirmed the same. Mr. Moffitt asked if they need to redo that. Mr. McLead responded that the quote from Reeves came in after last month’s meeting.

Mr. Hernandez noted that the quote from Reeves is $800 less, that he has been trying to see if Fence Masters would lower their price, and the gentleman keeps putting him off, and that a contract has not been signed. He requested that the board amend their motion from the last meeting to have the repairs made by two different companies to save the Town money.

Attorney Bennett advised that the action was taken, the quotes were brought in, and the Board approved that offer; regardless of whether or not a contract was signed, the action was legally taken by this Board by their vote in approving that, and that is not something they can go back on.

Mr. Moffitt commented that he had communicated with the gentleman today because they are looking at new fencing for the baseball fields, and he said he would take $300 off of the price by way of email response.

Mr. Hernandez asked if that is something that can be done legally. Attorney Bennett responded that if it is something that they are modifying within a line item of that offer, then yes, it can be changed accordingly. She advised that that’s not an understanding from them that this contract would change and that be awarded elsewhere.

Mr. Pondinas commented that Mr. Hernandez asked the company and got the price reduced for the aquatic controller and thanked him for doing the same.

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:

Mr. Moffitt reported that the baseball fields took a significant hit with the recent storms, how Fence Masters could repair the fencing, and that Paddock Bleacher Services will be out on Thursday to replace and repair. The gentleman from Paddock stated that from the looks of it, two of them are shot, and out of those two, he thinks he can repair the other two.

Mr. Boersma asked if this falls under a disaster on the insurance. Mr. Moffitt stated that there is an issue of who pays for this. The Town and the Parks Department are two different entities that own the parks and are the lessor. The baseball league is the lessee.

Mr. Phillips advised that the lease agreement says that St. John Youth Baseball is responsible for repairs and maintenance of anything within certain boundaries. He has asked Town Attorney Dave Westland for guidance on whose responsibility it is.

Mr. Phillips advised that he has started communication with the Town’s insurance company to submit a claim if it exceeds the deductible. He asked that Mr. Moffitt get him the information on the final cost. Mr. Phillips indicated that he is willing to help with the situation if it is the responsibility St. John Youth Baseball and to help out with the insurance and communicating with the Town Council as to what they want to do.

Mr. Bouvat asked if we can reach out to the insurance company and see what they say. Mr. Phillips responded that we have, and they want us to determine responsibility first. If the Town does not have that responsibility, we cannot submit a claim.

Attorney Bennett stated that part of the land falls on Park-owned property and part of it on Town-owned property and asked Mr. Phillips if there is a separate policy under the name of the Parks. Mr. Phillips responded that he has asked the insurance company for that information and is waiting for an answer.

Attorney Bennett said that is the first question because the property is titled some specifically as the Town and some specifically as St. John Parks & Rec. It could be two policies. Mr. Phillips noted that the bleachers are on Park-owned property, and fencing is on Town-owned property.

Mr. Phillips reported that K&S Engineers started doing the soil borings on Monday of this week and found some peat soils, which are unsuitable building soils. They are requesting permission to dig until they find suitable soil. The cost is an additional $30 per foot of depth. Mr. Phillips asked the Park Board to ratify his decision to continue boring.

Discussion ensued regarding capping the maximum depth. Mr. Pondinas recommended basing any motion on Kenn Kraus’ recommendation of how deep to allow them to

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion regarding K&S Engineers and the additional soil borings.

Mr. Boersma made a motion to authorize K&S Engineers to continue boring on the peat soils at an additional $30 per foot of depth at Prairie West Park not to exceed an additional depth as advised to be feasible by Town Engineer Kenn Kraus; Mr. Moffitt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Pondinas recognized and thanked the seasonal Park employees for all their hard work. The Park Board thanked them for their hard work. Everyone applauded them.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:

Mr. Boersma made a motion to pay the bills in the amount of $26,808.64; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Connelly made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Boersma seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Bouvat adjourned the meeting at 7:50 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Park Board

08-18-2020 Park Board Exhibits.pdf
09-15-2020 Park Board

September 15, 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Bouvat called the St. John Park Board Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, September 15, 2020, at 6:54 p.m., which was attended by all members onsite, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Members present: Patrick Connelly; Michael Moffitt; and Mike Bouvat, President. Also Present: Tyler McLead, Parks & Recreation Superintendent; Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Wayne Pondinas, Town Council Liaison; Michael Schilling, Town Council Liaison; and Nicole Bennett, Board Attorney. A quorum was attained. Absent: Johnny Boersma, Vice-President.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion regarding the minutes. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve the minutes of August 18, 2020; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by the three members present at the time of the vote.

NEW BUSINESS:

A. Consider Lake Hills Amphitheater Restoration Proposal
Mr. McLead advised that the amphitheater is in poor shape and presented a quote for the same with two prices: $24,600 and $29,900 for one or two coats of the red deck spray, respectively.

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion regarding the restoration of Lake Hills Amphitheater. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve the $24,600 option for All Things Concrete; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

B. Consider Contractual Agreement – Patti’s All American
Mr. McLead advised that this is a partnership to offer programs and explained how the partnership would work.

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion regarding the contract with Patti’s All American. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to enter into a contract with Patti’s All American; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

C. Lancer Park Pavilion Roof
Mr. McLead advised that the one quote shows a price of $4,995 plus additional cost for any decking that might be needed and asked that if the Board were to entertain a motion that they include a contingency of an amount not to exceed $6,500 based on the amount of decking that is needed.

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve Lesniak Construction, Inc., to do the repairs for the Lancer Park pavilion with the contingency that the total amount not exceed $6,500; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Moffitt asked if this would apply to Prairie West Park as well. Mr. McLead responded that the approval would go in front of the Town Council since the funds to pay for it would come out of the Riverboat fund, which is under their purview.

OLD BUSINESS:

A. Basketball Court Renovations and Repairs
Mr. McLead reported that Flex Court had completed the work at Civic Park and Lancer Park. The goals still need to be set. St. John Paving did work at Larimer Park, which is curing for 28 days, and they will be back at the end of the month to finish their work, after which the goals will be set.
B. Heartland Park Fencing Project
Mr. McLead reported that Fence Masters would be out to do the fencing and dumpster enclosure at Heartland Park the following week.
C. Heron Lake Splash Pad
Mr. Phillips stated that he sent the information to the insurance adjuster in August, and the adjuster has contacted Great Lakes Recreation for more information. They are waiting for the requested information.

Mr. McLead asked for the Board’s guidance on the splash pad because it is still exposed. Mr. Bouvat asked Mr. Gabe Hernandez to comment.

Mr. Hernandez commented that a conduit on the outside broke off that caused the box to leak. He kept the hole open so the electrician can come out, dismantle the box and pull the wiring out so the conduit can be fixed on the outside. He noted that it is a 2x2 hole so that it is just large enough for the elbow to be installed for the new wiring.

Mr. Hernandez stated that he isn’t sure how the insurance works, but he would like to get this repaired as soon as possible.

Mr. Phillips stated that he did not have the information about what Mr. Hernandez just reported in order to submit it to the insurance company along with the original claim for the cost of the box, so that will need to be sent to them.

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion regarding the Heron Lake Splash Pad. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to repair the Heron Lake Splash Pad in an amount not to exceed $5,000; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

D. Tri-Town Flag Football
Mr. McLead noted that the Tri-Town Flag Football had appeared at the June meeting. He advised that there is an agreement in their packets wherein the Parks and Recreation would receive $5 per participant of the NFL Flag Football program to promote it in the brochure and twice a year in the utility bill.

Mr. Pondinas commented that Tri-Town Flag Football requested the same opportunity as National Flag Football.

Mr. Bouvat entertained a motion regarding Tri-Town Flag Football for advertisement in the Town’s utility bills. Mr. Moffitt made a motion to approve the agreement with Tri-Town Flag Football; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:

Mr. Moffitt asked for an update on Heartland Park. Mr. Phillips responded that he submitted an email with the estimates on August 31, 2020, and has not heard back from the adjuster yet. He noted that he left him a follow-up voicemail the previous day and asked our agent to reach out.

Mr. Moffitt commented that they could get an additional new set of bleachers at $1,965 to match the replacement bleachers for four new sets of bleachers mounted at Heartland Park and pay the company $670 to create one good set of bleachers from the storm-damaged sets and take that and the one undamaged set to the T-ball field. Mr. Moffitt said that it is just a suggestion for now because we don’t know what the insurance will be covering.

Mr. Phillips advised that the insurance deductible is $2,500 per incident, and we don’t know how much they will be paying out.

Mr. Pondinas reported that the exterior of the Civic Park’s concession stand would be painted soon. He also reported that 30-35 loads of dirt had been unloaded, spread, leveled at Heartland Park.

Mr. Hernandez stated that he just finished laying seed and fertilizer at Wiggley Field. He is still working on cleaning up after the storms. They had a tree service come to take care of some dead trees against the power lines in Edgewood. Five of eight trees were removed, and he would like the company to come back out and do the last three. When asked how much it would cost, he responded that it would be between $1,500 and $2,000.

Mr. Bouvat said to get bids, and they will consider it. Mr. McLead stated that if it is under $4,000, he can coordinate with Mr. Phillips to try to get that done.

Mr. Phillips reported that we received the CDBG funding for both Prairie West Park and Founders Park. He advised there is a slight holdup at the state level on the DNR grant for Founders Park. He further advised that the soil borings were done in both parks, and there is more work to be done at Prairie West due to unsuitable soils on the far west end of the area where the additional parking is to be added. They had to dig down about 25 feet before finding suitable soils. The engineers are reviewing the geotechnical company’s report to determine the impact and submit a revised proposal with a revised estimate of costs.

Mr. Phillips noted that potential funding through the Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission has become available for pathway improvements. He would like to apply for funding to connect the St. John pathway, where it crosses Hedwig by Homestead Acres Park, to the new pathway at 96th Place at the intersection of Keilman. There is plenty of right-of-way to work with so that no property needs to be acquired to extend that pathway. The extremely competitive process should be an 80/20 match grant, where 20 percent has to come from the local match. The Board confirmed they would like him to look into this further.

Mr. Bouvat asked for a timeline on Founders Park. Mr. Phillips responded that the DNR had not approved the grant agreement as yet. It was anticipated to have started this fall and be substantially completed approximately May 2021. Mr. Bouvat asked if we could request an extension for the CDBG grant. Mr. Phillips responded that he would check on that.

Mr. McLead reported that the Fall Beanbag League starts Thursday, the Fishing Derby at Prairie West Park is Saturday, September 26, and Boo-Bash is Saturday, October 24 at Civic Park.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to pay the bills in the amount of $78,868.60; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Mr. Bouvat opened the floor for Public Comment.

Katy Slager (9417 Woodland Drive) and Michelle Metzger (12615 West 93rd Avenue): We live right next to Larimer Park. And we were – the basketball court looks great. It looks awesome. Yeah. So there’s a guy that runs his business out of the park, and we’ve already been told that, I guess, that’s okay to run your business out of the public park. I mean, he’s there every single day. And he kind of just like does what he wants. He parks where he wants. He’s parked in our neighbor’s yard recently. He, like, he parks right at the entrance to the park. Like, you have to ride on to get there, and it’s like he’s right away. Yeah. And it’s like can you at least, like, park to the side where there’s, like, spots to park? Why do you have to park right there? He does, he has a handicap sign on his van, but if you’re going to get out of your van and teach softball lessons, I don’t understand.

(Mr. Bouvat asked for clarification on when she says he is running a business.)

It’s a business. It’s definitely a business. It’s two guys and a girl, and they’re out of that – that Dyer soccer arena, the indoor Dyer soccer arena. So they rent that in the winter, and they may use our park all summer. And I mean they are – like we’ve had camps going on all week, like cars up and down. It’s mostly people from Illinois too that are his clients. But he’s not being nice to the kids, like our kids. Yeah. The neighborhood kids. Telling our kids we are not allowed – they are not allowed to ride their bikes on the new basketball court. Or he told – he’s going to shoot down someone’s drone. Like this little kid, he was, like, flying his drone. And he said, “I don’t want you flying that here.” And he kept yelling at like the softball girls. Pay attention, you know like, (both women were speaking simultaneously). I did talk to Gabe, and he said just call the police, you know. But I just don’t want to call the police for something.

(Mr. Moffitt stated that if he is not breaking the law. There’s not much the police are going to be able to do.)

Okay.

(Mr. Moffitt added that if it is not posted that he cannot park there –)

Yeah. So I was going to see, can we get a sign requested so he can’t park on the new asphalt?

(Mr. Moffitt responded that is something they can do.)

Okay. I mean, he’s still – you guys have a barricade up, he parks – he backs his van right on top of it right now, so we’re like –

(Mr. Pondinas asked if he is parking on top of the new basketball court.)

No, on the new – on the new path that you guys just put in. So but before that, he was parking on the basketball court. And then I went down there and said something to him, “if you run over one of my kids, you know, like, you cannot park in the park,” so. And my husband’s like told me I’m not supposed to be – he’s like, “Call the police; do not confront anybody,” so.

(Mr. Moffitt stated that another option could be to put the wood posts so a vehicle can’t be driven down the path.)

Okay. Yeah.

(Mr. Moffitt reiterated that the issue of him using the park for lessons is not something that they can stop because it is a public park.)

Okay. Yeah. We just – I just figured maybe, like, what if somebody got hurt from his softball lessons? You know, and then it’s on you guys.

(Mr. Moffitt explained that it is possible with any park. Travel teams practice at Civic Park all the time, and we can’t kick them off.)

Okay. Yeah.

(Mr. Moffitt explained that the only place that there is an exception is Heartland Park where baseball has a lease that allows them to lock the gates.)

Yeah, we’ve tried before. We tried last year ‘cause he’s been there for, what, five years now. As long as I know. Yeah. So, but all right.

(Mr. Connelly told them to keep calling the police.)

I don’t want – yeah, I’m like, I don’t want to call them.

(Mr. Bouvat stated that if he is confronting children, he should not be doing that. Mr. Connelly added that you shouldn’t confront anyone, just call the police.)

Okay. All right.

(Mr. Bouvat asked for confirmation that he is parking on the pathway that leads into the park.)

Yeah. He parks – as soon as that barricade comes down, I’m sure he’ll be, like, right back in the park next to the porta-potty part. With his trunk open, everything, and it’s not like it’s just to unload.

(Mr. Moffitt stated that it is a driveway, and we would have to put a sign up to say no vehicles on the path. Mr. Pondinas asked if he needs a business license.)

That’s what I was thinking, yeah.

(Mr. Moffitt stated that they are usually doing it for cash. They do that Heartland Park every day.)

Oh, really, I didn’t know that.

(Mr. Connelley asked if they have to have a business license or something. Mr. Moffitt responded that he does not believe so. Ms. Bennett advised that this would be like any other sports team or activity, and they don’t need to have a license in that respect either. Mr. Connelley asked if he is selling items out of his car.)

I don’t think so. No, just talent.

(Mr. Moffitt stated that this is common with baseball.)

Oh, okay.

(Mr. Moffitt advised that if he is violating some an ordinance, the police can do something. Ms. Bennett advised that this board cannot do anything about that, but the police can investigate the truth of the statements regarding shooting the drones.)

Okay.

(Ms. Bennett added that if it is happening and the kids are reporting it much later; you can’t –)

Yeah, he never says anything when we’re around. He says, “stop” to the kids, so, but, so. My kids are pretty little, so I know they are not going to lie to me yet. They won’t exaggerate.

(Mr. Bouvat stated that they would follow up with exploring getting a sign.)

Okay. All right. Cool. We’ll be happy with a sign. Okay. Thank you for your time. Yep, thank you.

Mike Schilling (14281 Onyx Way): As the summer comes to an end here, I want to thank the Park Board for the vast improvements that were made along with the park staff. You know, as I go through town, drive through town, I can see the improvements this year alone in some of the park infrastructure that was bad, like the ballpark – or the basketball courts at Lancer. That was chopped up and bad for years. I appreciate your guys’ hard work getting those problems addressed. Another thing, the cleanup of the overgrowth in the town parks this year was great, you know. So I appreciate your guys’ work. I’m a councilman, but coming up as Public Comment to make that.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Moffitt made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Connelly seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Bouvat adjourned the meeting at 8:08 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Park Board

Meeting Video Recordings may be found on the Town's YouTube channel

Meeting Audio Recordings

01-21-2020 Park Board

02-18-2020 Park Board

05-19-2020 Park Board

06-16-2020 Park Board

07-21-2020 Park Board

08-18-2020 Park Board

09-15-2020 Park Board

10-20-2020 Park Board

11-12-2020 Park Board

11-17-2020 Park Board

12-15-2020 Park Board

Accessibility  Copyright © 2021 Town of St. John, Indiana Accessible Version  Follow us on Facebook Logo