Call To Order:
Trustee Sanderson opened the retreat at 8:45am in the Calkins Room at the Community Center at Mercerview
Roll Call (The roll was not called)
Rita Moore, Don Cohen, Bruce Bassett, Liz Sanderson, Tina Lanzinger, Fletch Waller, Mike Grady
Pete Mayer, Director of Parks and Receation
Curt Brees, Parks Superintendent
Paul West, Park Arborist
There were no minutes to review
There were no public appearances
Trustee Sanderson introduced Loretta Kusak, a former teacher from the Mercer Island School District. She expressed her appreciation for the treasure that Pioneer Park is and her hope for it to continue to be an opportunity for the education of students. The board asked questions about what would help educate students. She said that an on-site bathroom would help, as well as interpretive information, both in the park and provided in document form. She said that retired teachers, parents and Patty Webber, the curriculum director would be good resources to contact to help with this.
Trustee Sanderson began the retreat by describing the vibrant land conservation efforts she witnessed in Wisconsin. She said that the board had accomplished its original work plan and this was a good opportunity to ask,”Where do we go from here?”
Trustee Sanderson went over the Trust’s mission statement. She then focused on the product created by Trustees Waller and Bassett. She posed the question,”should this park be a preserve?” There was some discussion about the goal of “making it valued”. Should the goal include off-island users? The group settled on focusing on island population for the purposes of this retreat.
9:25 Anything missing?
Trustee Sanderson asked if there was anything missing from the diagram from Trustees Waller and Bassett. Issues included nuisance wildlife, hazard trees, plant collection, carbon sequestration, individual contributions. There was some discussion about the messy appearance of restoration projects and how they could be used to educate the public. Trustee Waller suggested updating the forest management plan and creating a short term maintenance plan for the park. Other board members expressed interest in being more informed about forest management projects and the work plan. This brought up a discussion about Open Public Meetings act and a question about the board meeting in small groups.
Break at 10:12
10:26 Q & A with Trustee Grady
Trustee Grady discussed the climate change resolution coming before City Council on May 7th. This includes updating the bike and pedestrian plan that would involve Pioneer Park. The board discussed related issues, such as sidewalk on Island Crest Way, Town Center connections, connections to other parks and habitat corridors. Trustee Grady said that this is a quality of life issue, and that the needs of younger families moving onto the island need to be addressed. Trustee Grady left after this discussion.
10:51 Make it healthy
Based on Trustee Waller’s earlier suggestion, an action item was generated to address updating the forest management plan with a work plan. This would be implemented by a field supervisor and special funding would be sought for storm-related needs. A task force consisting of Trustees Moore, Bassett and Lanzinger will meet with Mr. West to walk the site and develop a work plan.
11:32 Make it valued
Trustee Waller proposed conducting a feasibility study of educational resources needed for schools to engage them in Pioneer Park. The board discussed who should be involved in this study. Trustees Waller and Sanderson volunteered to be on the task force for this study. The board discussed the Trillium publication and the staffing of a booth at Summer Celebration. The board decided to forego both the Trillium and the Summer Celebration booth for this year, with the intention of using them to publicize the results of the feasibility study next year. Trustee Cohen offered to ask the City Attorney about the process for changing the name of Pioneer Park to some other name that includes the word preserve.
The board reviewed the following list of work items that resulted from the retreat:
- FMP and workplan, storm mitigation budget, forest steward
- Schools – feasibility study of field resource for schools
- postpone booth and trillium
- name change exploration
- discuss trail markers
- Survey citizens re usage
- Outreach to other organizations
- periodic docent walks (public and leaders)
Trustee Sanderson closed the retreat at 11:50 am