Call To Order:
Chair Newman called the meeting to order at 6:03 pm in the City Council Chambers of City Hall.
Chair Newman, Vice Chair Thorpe, Secretary Lanzinger, and Trustees Poor, Wachs and Weiker were present. Council Liaison Brahm was absent.
Bruce Fletcher, Parks & Recreation Director
Jason Kintner, Parks Superintendent
Paul West, Parks Natural Resource Coordinator
Alaine Sommargren, Natural Resource Specialist
It was moved by Trustee Wachs, seconded by Trustee Lanzinger, to:
Approve the minutes of November 8, 2012 with the following changes: 1. Note that the absences of Trustees Poor and Thorpe were excused, 2. Strike ‘and two’ from last sentence in Regular Business Item II, 3. Move apostrophe in week’s to weeks’ in Regular Business Item III.
Motion passed 5-0
There were no public appearances.
Introduction of Jason Kintner – Bruce Fletcher
Director Bruce Fletcher introduced Jason Kintner to the Trust Board, and Jason told the Trustees a little about his history with the City of Mercer Island.
Election of Officers – Elliot Newman
It was moved by Vice Chair Thorpe, seconded by Trustee Weiker, to:
Reelect the current chair to another term.
Motion passed 5-0
It was moved by Trustee Wachs, seconded by Trustee Poor, to:
Retain the current Vice Chair.
Motion passed 5-0
It was moved by Trustee Lanzinger, seconded by Trustee Wachs, to:
To elect Trustee Poor as Secretary.
Motion passed 5-0
Dog Off-Leash Issues and Policy – Jason Kintner
Jason Kintner gave a brief history of the City’s municipal code pertaining to off-leash dogs. He explained that the Parks Department received two emails in December from residents living on the north boundary of the northwest quadrant regarding off-leash dogs. He reported that the Parks Department contacted Mercer Island Police to request more dog patrols in Pioneer Park, and have moved woody debris into the area between the trail and the Ganes Property.
Kristine Ganes of 8651 SE 63rd Ave addressed the Trustees about her concerns detailed in her December email.
Trustee Lanzinger asked if this issue is under the Open Space Conservancy Trust Board jurisdiction, or the City Council. Jason Kintner explained that if there were any changes the Trust Board wanted to make, it would be done in the form of a recommendation. Trustee Lanzinger suggested making a change to require leashes in the northwest quadrant where homes are in close proximity to the trail, and allowing dogs off leash in either the northeast or southeast quadrants where there is more of a buffer between the park and homes.
Bruce Fletcher suggested perhaps adding some additional signage and monitoring the problem before going down the road of making a change to the code. Paul West reported that there has been a lot of restoration work done in the northeast quadrant in the last few years, creating a more open understory. He is concerned about the vulnerability of that quadrant at this time. He proposed implementing a public education initiative to see what can be done to improve the issue.
Chair Newman requested staff post some information on the municipal code and off-leash policy at the kiosk (and perhaps other locations) and continue to create barriers to private property (as needed). He asked that staff report back on the issue at the next meeting.
2013 Work Plan – Paul West
Paul West reviewed the draft work plan in the staff report, and opened the topic for discussion. The Trustees agreed to keep the quadrant reports on the work plan, and Chair Newman requested they be added to every meeting agenda. There was interest in adding an agenda item to the March meeting regarding special event applications. Paul moved that the preschool outreach item be removed as it has lost momentum over time. Trustee Lanzinger requested it not be removed until she’s had an opportunity to send a final communication to Sunnybeam Preschool to see if they are interested. Paul West requested that root rot protocol be changed to root rot management as it is an ongoing problem.
Paul agreed to made the necessary changes and bring them to the next meeting for final approval.
Leap for Green and Summer Celebration!– Paul West
During the last meeting Chair Newman asked the Trustees to consider the topic of the Trust Board’s involvement in Leap for Green and Summer Celebration. The Trustees discussed the possibility of having a high school student do a Pioneer Park related presentation Leap for Green. Paul also suggested the possibility of asking Island Books or the City Booth to promote “Pioneer Park – A Natural History” at the Leap for Green event. Leap for Green will be placed on the agenda for the September 2013 meeting to make plans for the Leap for Green event.
DNR Urban Forestry Crew Update – Alaine Sommargren
Alaine Sommargren reported that the DNR Urban Forestry Crew addressed some of the invasives that came back into an area of the northwest quadrant including some mapping. There were a total of 6 crew members that worked for 7 days and covered the area very meticulously. Chair Newman suggested the Trust Board send a letter thanking the crew for the work they did, which Trustee Poor will handle.
Benches and Donations Policy – Paul West
Paul West presented the information in the agenda packet regarding the donations policy. He explained the reasoning for the policy, specifically addressing bench and tree donations.
Annual Report to Council – Paul West
Paul West said he will have a draft of the Annual Report to Council at the March meeting for review by the Trust Board. After the report is finalized it will likely be scheduled for a Council meeting in April or May.
Next Meeting – Elliot Newman
The next meeting is scheduled for March 21, 2013.