Call to Order
Trustee Sanderson called the meeting to order at 6:04pm in the City Council Chambers of City Hall
Roll Call (Roll was not called.)
Present: Tina Lanzinger, Liz Sanderson, Bruce Bassett, Fletch Waller, Don Cohen, Mike Grady. Rita Moore was absent.
Pete Mayer, Director of Parks and Receation
Curt Brees, Parks Superintendent
Stephanie Cangie, Administrative Assistant
There were no minutes to review
There were no public appearances
Trustee Sanderson outlined retreat framework elements: vision, mission, board, policy. She explained the strategic planning elements which she intended to cover: Issues and opportunities and generate options. She intended to cover other elements at the retreat. Trustee Sanderson guided the board to look at the mission statement. She highlighted key words. She gave examples of issues and opportunities.
Trustee Waller asked to discuss the vision and mission as well. He suggested that the mission identify the board as the advocate for open space on the island. Trustee Bassett suggested forming a separate group for that purpose. Trustee Lanzinger suggested that the board’s work could generate the information needed to initiate such an organization. Councilmember Grady suggested that the board could effect the desire to play a role in other open space by being a model for open space management.
Trustee Waller raised the question about why the Engstrom Open Space is not going to be transferred to the Trust. Director Mayer said that the language in the trust documents was likely intended to give the trust broader purpose to make the board a legal entity. The intention of Council was not clear from this. None of the open space properties are at risk for development, so there is no need to protect other properties in this way. He stated that there is not the political will to transfer more properties into the Trust. Trustee Waller posed a question about Council’s ability to develop Engstrom Open Space. Director Mayer said that deed restrictions would limit what could be done there. Trustee Waller asked if the board would have a role in any development there. Director said that this role would be similar to the Parks and Open Space Advisory Board, which was disbanded by Council in the 1990’s. He explained the history and current situation of boards in the City. He said that Engstrom would be managed consistent with the Open Space Vegetation Plan, which can include some trails development.
Trustee Lanzinger highlighted the need for open space advocacy on the island. Trustee Cohen summarized the issue as: how can we promote the greater mission of preserving open space on the island within the Trust’s mission? Director Mayer said The Trust could be a resource for curriculum, speakers bureaus, demonstration areas, pilot sustainable practices, recycled materials. and education.
Trustee Bassett reflected that the park is not in crisis – no golf course proposal is threatening it, nor is there need for more protection of other spaces. He posed the idea that the Trust may have accomplished its mission and could meet every six months to review ongoing work. He posed this question as a way of asking where does the Trust want to be. He said that his evaluation of the storm damage has led him to be very concerned about the canopy condition of the SE quadrant. Trustee Lanzinger agreed and stated her concerns about the soil condition. She wanted to see the community aware of what goes on and to appreciate it. Trustee Waller said that the “mission accomplished” idea does not resonate with him. He sees the word advocacy as an invitation to speak up. There was further discussion about the role of trustees in advocacy.
Trustee Sanderson reflected that she came to the board with the sense of “mission accomplished”. She suggested that the topics of education, storm repair, community awareness, communication be part of the retreat.
Councilmember Grady said he was uneasy about mission accomplished. He said that we need to be as creative as we can about protecting and maintaining what we have and generate a revenue stream. Future councils may not be favorable to holding so much open space. The Trust should be leading and modeling stewardship, especially regarding climate change.
Trustee Cohen asked if the City Council has considered talking to potential donors on the island. Councilmember Grady discussed ideas for fundraising which would also raise awareness. Director Mayer talked about gift catalogue as an opportunity through Northwest Parks Foundation. Trustee Lanzinger asked if it could be specific to Pioneer Park. Director Mayer said yes, that’s set up. Trustee Lanzinger asked about forming a separate foundation. Director Mayer the Parks and Recreation Foundation that previously existed that could not sustain community support and expressed concerns about the complication setting up a foundation entails.
Trustee Cohen raised the outreach idea when he got on the board of spirituality connected with open space. This would be a way to connect with religious institutions.
Trustee Bassett generated a framework for the ensuing discussion. He presented the goal Trust’s goal to “make the park healthy”. Outreach follows from that and resources result . Trustee Waller added that “make it valued” should be in there too.
Trustee Sanderson guided this discussion into generate options She pointed out that awareness keeps coming up. Councilmember Grady talked about managing the park in the aftermath of the storm, especially anticipating climate change. Trustee Sanderson raised the idea of producing a video of what we are doing around the storm. The board discussed this idea.
Councilmember Grady reported that Council is going to move aggressively to perform an assessment of what the current carbon situation is and look at carbon sequestration. Trustee Bassett brought up the storm damage numbers that Council wants to see. Councilmember Grady said that Council needs specific numbers on what needs to be done. The Trust needs to work with Paul to advocate for what is going to be needed. Trustee Waller said that we need a new forest management plan with the current situation. Director Mayer said that the original plan involved an extensive process, and an update to the plan might be appropriate catch us up and reflect any new direction that board wants to take.
Assistant Cangie agreed to set up the date for the retreat and distribute materials. Trustee Bassett described sorting the issues and options into the categories the board developed.