** Legal Review Committee hearing from Counselor Brian Rice. In theory, he would inform the commissioners about just what it is he does for the Park Board that justifies spending around $400,000 a year, year after year, with his small law firm. While his letter to commissioner Bob Fine provides a bit more detail than his oral presentation, there was very little detail, except in the history of the relationship. Rice has worked for the Park Board for about 20 years, initially while working for another large law firm, and then starting in May, 2000 for his own firm. Interestingly, he mentions a couple of times the hugely expensive litigation involved in the Neiman Sports Complex at Ft. Snelling [the $16 million plus white elephant], without actually putting a price tag on that particular litigation. Rice also mentions twice working directly with commissioner Walt Dziedzic, which stood out as very peculiar in his presentation.
* Commissioner Mason asks about Rice’s ability to handle real estate issues, a large and important part of the Park Board’s legal bill, and a rather specialized are of law. Mason also asks about conflict of interest, when Rice lobbies for other organizations as well as the Park Board [and does not state, but the real problem is, those other organizations are the major campaign contributors to the majority of the Park Board commissioners who hire Rice — that is, Rice is bringing in the largest amount of campaign funds directly to the people who decide whether to hire him or not. This is a text-book example of a conflict of interest]. She also asks if during legislative sessions, if Rice does not run into time conflicts, with trying to lobby for a variety of clients and do legal work for the Park Board at the same time.
* Rice admits that real estate is his biggest challenge, but says he does not hesitate to call on others at other law firms for help when needed. Rice says there are fewer conflicts of interest being in a small firm than in a large firm with more clients [answering Mason’s question literally, rather than the real question]. He says he is very sensitive to representing conflicting interests. Rice states he sees “no conflict” between lobbying for the Minneapolis fire and police pension funds [both major contributors to Park Board commissioner election campaigns] and doing legal work and lobbying for the Park Board. He says their interests never intersect or conflict [which, while lobbying the state legislature is quite believable]. With respect to time constraints, Rice says that having lobbyist Maryann Campo also representing the Park Board has helped, it hasn’t been a serious problem, that it has been a challenge and an opportunity, and that he has always been reachable at the capitol via cell phone.
* Commissioner Erwin asks what his hourly rate is and has it changed over 3 years. He also asks what “Board Business Matters” are [one of the categories on the one page hand-out showing Rice’s legal fees broken into 7 categories] and how does it differ from other things?
* Rice answers that his rate is $125 per hour and it has not changed over 3 years. Rice is not sure of what the “Board Business Matters” are, but believes that items directly brought up by the board and asked of him are included. Rice states that assistant superintendent Don Siggelkow could provide a more accurate answer.
++ Here are the numbers from that handout, titled “Rice Michels Legal Fees”:
Category 2001 2002 2003
Personnel Matters $41,734.96 $69,069.19 $98,563.39
Board Bus. Matters $97,992.28 $107,786.50 $75,059.97
Contracts $36,946.29 $54,684.27 $79,681.17
General Liability $42,280.32 $57,902.90 $28,206.31
Litigation $91,867.25 $68,834.62 $33,365.47
Real Estate $14,671.81 $27,682.97 $6,861.88
Other $6,736.59 $5,195.80 $5,881.32
SubTotals $332,229.50 $391,156.25 $327,619.51
Lobbying $119,964.23 $101,642.80 $ 76,383.02
TOTALS $452,193.73 $492,799.05 $404,002.53
* Mason asks what is the plan for the next actions this committee will take regarding the review of the Park Board’s legal services?
* Chair Fine says “I don’t have a plan.” He asks the committee what they want to do.
* Commissioner Kummer asks how the contract with Rice is made and when.
* Fine says it is an annual appointment, not a contract, made at annual meeting in January.
* Rice says he has never had a contract.
* Mason says she would like the details regarding board business matters per Erwin’s question and the 2004 figures before the January meeting.
* Erwin suggests they talk about it and move it to full board in December.
* Commissioner Dziedzic asks Rice if the Park Board is better off at the legislature today than yesterday. Answer: in so many words, yes. [but how do you measure that, especially since the Park Board got zero of what it wanted out of the legislature this year]
Legal Review Committee Adjourns.
** Planning Committee Convenes.
* Dziedic moves 4.1, to place a restrictive covenant on the B. F. Nelson Park site to prevent building on top of capped pollution without further dealing with the state Pollution Control Agency, either by the Park Board or future owners or users of the land.
Some discussion ensues about what this is for, where the pollution is, etc. Motion PASSES.
* Study / Report Items
+ Bassett’s Creek Valley Master Plan (BCVMP) — this report came about as a request stemming from Bob Fine’s attempts to promote unapproved plans for development in the Bryn Mawr Meadows park. Report was made by Tom Leighton of the City Planning department. Leighton describes the creation, approval and highlights of the Bassett’s Creek Valley Master Plan (approved by City council in 2000). He also talks in general about the planned Van White Boulevard which will cut through the property to the east of Bryn Mawr Meadows. He also mentions briefly an LCMR Regional Storm Water facility in this area on city property.
Leighton describes the properties adjoining the Bryn Mawr Meadows, most of which are owned by the city and in use for a variety of things (car impound lot, rock crusher, storage yards, etc.). He talks about city’s plans for the area.
He also talks about the Bassett’s Creek Valley Redevelopment Oversight Committee, which is not a city effort, but a private effort through some committee (not clear who) and the Ryan Companies. This plan is to be completely in October, 2005. He says there is lots of compatibility between the BCVMP and the Park Board “sketches” for the area.
He shows photos and diagrams of the area and planned or potential uses, including a commercial strip along 394 on the southeast side of Bryn Mawr Meadows, and possibly moving the farmers market to somewhere in the redeveloped area.
* Erwin says he is heartened by the suggested move of the farmers market. He asks about the flow rate of Bassett’s Creek. Leighton’s answer is that he does not know about the hydraulics.
* Dziedzic has a couple of questions: (1) Is there a plan to build a parking ramp in place of the impound lot? (2) What is the major issue to doing this development? Leighton answers: (1) City council can’t afford to build a parking ramp, but perhaps as part of other commercial development, (2) aesthetic and other Bryn Maws community issues.
* Hauser wants clarification on the Heritage Project where she thinks the city wanted some park space developed. Leighton answers: No, the city has not and does not give direction to the Park Board. He is here simply to provide information.
* Mason reminds the board that the Bryn Mawr neighborhood association and other Bassett’s Creek Valley residents had asked the Park Board for a formal and specific response to their plans for Bryn Mawr Meadows with respect to how they fit or do not fit with the approved BCV Master Plan.
* Assistant superintendent Judd Rietkerk answers that the Park Board planning department will develop their own master plan for the area, etc. etc.
** Planning Committee Recesses
** Regular Meeting called to order by President Jon Olson.
* Open Time
Mary Lou Hill reads the following letter to the board:
“As members of the public who were present at the August 18 Park Board meeting, we were stunned when commissioner Walt Dziedzic lost his temper and launched an unprovoked attack on some of his fellow commissioners.
We were also present at the October 20 meeting of the Standards and Conduct Committee and were astonished when commissioners Bob Fine and Carol Kummer voted to deny commissioner Vivian Mason’s request for an apology from commissioner Dziedzic for his aggressive behavior. Commissioner John Erwin, a member of the committee voted against the motion and called Dziedzic’s outburst “inappropriate.” Commissioner Fine was not at the August 18 meeting at which Dziedzic’s inappropriate conduct occurred, yet felt qualified to act as a member of the committee.
We want to express our disappointment at this unfortunate outcome. Intimidating words and actions should not be tolerated or condoned by this public body. We believe that commissioner Dziedzic still owes an apology not only to commissioner Mason but also to the other offended commissioners and to the public as well.
Signed by Chris Johnson, Mary Lou Hill and Arlene Fried”
** Recess Regular Meeting
** Reconvene Planning Committee
* Study / Report Item: Calhoun Yacht Club
* Several members of the Calhoun Yacht Club, including Bill Coppage, give a presentation regarding their history and activities, and their concerns about the increasing crowding and density of use at the north east corner of Lake Calhoun — present location of bouys, dock, boat ramp, refectory, Tin Fish, etc. The Yacht Club would like to build a “sailing center” in the southeast corner of Lake Calhoun. They have engaged the Barbour/LaDouceur Architects firm to develop a concept and plan. It contains 3 buildings, with much more space than the Yacht Club needs for its uses, the idea being that concessions/vendors would occupy the other portions. The concept is presented by John Barbour and Janis LaDouceur.
The Yacht Club proposes that the Park Board fund the construction, act as general contractor and would own the sailing center once completed. The Yacht Club proposes to donate $150,000 to $200,000 towards construction costs over 5 years. Retail tenants rent and a percentage of revenue would pay off the remaining construction costs [and eventually become an income stream for the Park Board?].
* Commissioner Young asks a number of questions: (1) How much does sailing cost? Is this something that has a wide enough audience among park users? (2) How much will the buildings cost to build? (3) Has the Yacht Club made any official neighborhood contact? (4) In future neighborhood contact, be sure to include people of color and the numbers of same.
Answers from Club and Barbour: (1) sailing can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars for the type of sailing they do on Lake Calhoun. (2) Building will cost about $1.5 million. (3) No contact yet with neighbors.
* Erwin asks about multiuse of the buildings, e.g. rollerblade rental. Also the possibility of building decking for use by diners out over the water, as the location has a great view of the city, and such an amenity does not exist in Minneapolis.
* Fine answers Erwin’s questions and appears to already know all about this project, though it is the first presentation to the board. He says the Park Board will own the buildings and rent them out.
* Commissioner Berry Graves has done some sailing herself and wonders if Lake Calhoun is not the best place for a “sailing center” in the park system. It is a narrow lake and has more wind obstructions near shore. She suggests that perhaps Lake Nokomis, which is larger and has more wind, might not be a better location. She asks the size of the proposed structures. Answer is 150 feet outside dimension of the 3 buildings and decking.
* Fine points out that this is just a study / report item. It will go to the Park Board planning department before any action is taken on it.
* Commissioner Kummer asks about the height of the buildings and mentions the shoreline ordinance which limits heights to 35 feet. Answer: around 35 to 40 feet, like the Lake Harriet band shell.
* Olson is in favor and thinks it is a wonderful opportunity.
* Fine refers it to staff and asks for a motion to adjourn, but then realizes there is a large crowd of wind surfers in the audience who thought they would have a chance to speak. He gives them a couple minutes.
* Windsurfer Marissa Lasky of Edlin Place and a member of the Minneapolis Zoning Board speaks on their behalf. She is seriously perturbed. The windsurfer contingent complains of just learning about this development and would like to know in advance about Park Board plans that would affect them, even though they consider themselves to be the poor step-child of the parks. They have a number of concerns, and are adamantly opposed to the proposed sailing center being built in the location they presently use for launching and sailing. She explains the nature of their sport — no place to do formal training due to park liability concerns, no ability to adjust the sheet while sailing like boats thus necessitating frequent equipment changs which are not practical to do if one must hike across a busy road carrying a sail board, etc. Bouys in the water for the sailboats pose a serious hazard to windsurfers, who don’t have rudders and keels designed for that kind of tight maneuvering, etc. Lake Calhoun is the only lake in the chain of lakes that they can practically sail on now. If this project goes through, they will have no place to go in the city.
* Fine points out that the board is not voting on anything. It’s just a proposal.
** Planning Committee Adjourns
** Admininistration & Finance Committee called to order by chair Marie Hauser
* Item 7.1 is moved and passes.
* Dziedzic moves Item 7.2, authorize staff to negotiate sale of former Fuji Ya site to Columbia Development LP (formerly Lucky Club LLC).
Staff reviews how the Park Board came into possession of the Fuji Ya property.
Young asks if this site is on top of a mill ruin? Staff answer: Yes, the Columbia Mill.
Erwin asks counsel Rice if selling this land will undermine the Park Board’s position with respect to Crown Hydro’s use of eminent domain to take part of Mill Ruins Park, directly across the street from this site.
Rice says he does not think so.
[It occurs to me as I write this, why doesn’t Crown Hydro just cut a deal with Columbia Development / Lucky Club to build their hydro power plant in the basement of their new development on this site?]
Dziedzic asks how much parking does the Park Board get, how much money does the board get, and can get they get restaurant in that space. Answers: about 60 spaces, $2.5 million minus $750,000 for the parking facility [then why not just call it $1.75 million net?], and No Restaurant.
Kummer asks about the height of the building, shoreland ordinance, view of other buildings, etc.
Jeff Arandel of Columbia Development / Lucky Club mentions that there is a restuarant at the Mill City Museum. He then says that they are limiting the height of their proposed structure to as much as 30 feet lower than what zoning allows.
Kummer says State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) is not going to like the ruin removal. She’s nervous about “it.” [the sale? SHPO?]
Assistant superintendent Siggelkow says that SHPO has much less authority over private parties like Columbia than they do over government entities like the Park Board and City.
Someone else mentions that historic preservation involves preserving examples of kinds of structures and uses, such that removing Columbia’s ruins, just one of several such examples, some of which are already preserved, is not usually a problem for preservation regulations.
Mason mentions that the Park Board’s land acquisition fund has been depleted to a balance of about $6,000 [thanks to the Taj Mahal HQ and the White Elephant Neiman Sports Complex?], and would like to see the proceeds from this sale get placed back into that fund.
Young is concerned about the parking loss at Mill Ruins Park, being replaced by parking in Columbia Development’s building across the street [problem for handicapped parkers, for one] and the parking ramp rates versus the surface lot rates. She is also concerned about Crown Hydro using this sale as a reason to file a lawsuit.
Counsel Rice reiterates this question is like Erwin’s and that he is “very confident” it will not pose a risk.
7.2 passes to full board.
Young moves 7.3 and 7.4, which spend an additional $150,000 plus $525,000 (respectively) for additional stump grinding and equipment rental.
Assistant superintendent or general manager Mike Schmidt says the money is needed to grind 9,000 stumps [the number was 8,000 last meeting], and needed to pay the vendors so that work can continue.
Motion passes. [and just like that the Park Board spends another $675,000 that was not in this year’s budget — where will they get it from?]
Admin & Finance continued
* 2005 Preliminary Budget Review
Asst. super. Siggelkow presents the proposed budget:
- Most of the operational budget comes from property taxes and an ever diminishing amount comes for state LGA (local government aid).
- Cost of maintaining current service levels is a 4.7% increase over 2004 budget.
- Maximum property tax levy increase will only generate 2.6%.
- Need a 2.1% reduction in operating expense or $1.02 million to balance the budget as part of the Interim Superintendent’s recommended budget.
- One time sources cannot be used as a direct funding source to balance ongoing expenses [thankfully, or we’d see accounting tricks like they do in the Pawlenty administration].
- 2005 recommended budget is $49,901,888 compared to 2004 of $48,631,091.
- 2005 superintendent’s budget does not include any impacts that WILL result from Minneapolis pulic school closures.
- Estimates on current positions that will be held vacant next year provide $353,000 in savings. Remaining budget gap is $667,000.
- A total of $345,000 in service reductions, service eliminations and fee increases are proposed which reduce the budget gap to $322,000. These proposals are:
- Environmental Education Program service reductions and fee increases for $135,000.
- Eliminate park police horse patrol: $36,000.
- Reduce Summer Playgrounds by 50%: $85,000.
- Increase adult sports fees by 15%: $21,000.
- Charge field use fee of $500 to traveling teams: $25,000 [currently FREE??]
- Eliminate contributions to Midtown Greenway $25,000 and the Coyle Center $18,000.
Last strategy to balance remaining gap of $322,000 is to use one-time money
to reduce ongoing operating costs through investments and debt service pay
downs. They are:
- Create an Investment Fund to provide funding for projects that reduce operating costs or increase operating revenues. Initial projects for 2005: –1. Energy management systems update at rec centers: cost $75,000, annual savings $15,000, 5 year pay back.
- Install well at White Elephant Neiman Complex: cost $85,000, annual savings $45,000, 2 year pay back [then why did they spend $2 million to run a water line out there from the city? Why not just build the well in the first place and save $1,915,000?]
- Build a mini golf center at Lupient Water Park: cost $100,000, annual income $80,000 [really?], less than 2 year pay back.
- Invest in aquatics operations to improve operations, increase income and reduce operating costs: invest up to $75,000; annual operating savings and income of $75,000; 1 year pay back [really? just like magic?]
- Reduce operating costs by $256,000, the payment amount on mortgage on the Taj Mahal HQ building, by paying mortgage off with one time sources. [and you got a mortgage in the first place because why?] Payoff of mortgage will save $1,500,000 over scheduled interest payments over next 13 years.
Other uses of one time funding:
- $500,000 emergency stump removal in 2005.
- $500,000 to establish emergency tree removal fund in addition to 5% operating reserve.
- “The reserve for the Tax Operating Fund after these changes is $2.5 or a 5% reserve level” [you figure it out, that’s a literal quote]
Remaining Steps in the Budget Process
- PUBLIC INPUT on the interim superintendent’s recommended 2005 budget will be held November 10 at 5:30pm.
- 2005 budget preliminary approval on November 17 by Admin & Finance Committee.
- Preliminary 2005 budget approval at full board on December 1.
- Truth in Taxation Public Hearing December 6.
- Full board review, budget approval and taxy levy approval on December 13.
* Commissioner Mason has several remarks: (1) Should move this before the full board instead of just admin & fin. on November 17. (2) Find other ways to pay off Ft. Snelling [the White Elephant Neiman Complex] rather than using the system-wide golf course revenues as they do now, and then redirect those golf course enterprise revenues to other programs. Need an innovative solution as we are losing $75,000 a year at Ft. Snelling. [I know, why don’t you sell it to a private developer? Know anyone who will pay $16 million for it? Cut your losses and get out now.] (3) Tin Fish is a good example of innovative new revenue source. (4) Total fund balances are $17 million, but need details, especially on how much and where much of that balance is already allocated. (5) Preplanning Fund could be used for VIP projects.
* Commissioner Young has several remarks: (1) Is opposed to cutting Environmental Education program. (2) Is against eliminating mobile recreation center in the summer. (3) Better use of funds, do we need a new ??? [can’t read my own writing!] and can the Foundation help somewhere? (4) Mini golf location doesn’t seem right. Lots of golf in north and northeast, and nothing in Phillips or surrounds. (5) No discussion of Wind Energy Project? (6) Placement of buildings, possible rec center closures as some areas have many and others none.
* Chair Hauser cuts Young off before she finishes citing time constraints.
* Comr. Erwin says he would like more information, not just the numbers in the proposed budget, but those last year and last 5 years and the change. He believes they should make Ft. Snelling [White Elephant] a zero loss operation, by making it stand on its own [its own revenue pays its own operating expenses, I assume]. He also wants more details on the fund balances that Mason mentioned, and says that solar lighting might be another one time investment that would pay off in operational cost savings.
* Comr. Dziedzic has some questions. (1) Page 4, maximum property tax revenue increase is 2.6%. Does that include increase in assessed values? (2) City covers independent boards with 10% budget reserve, why do we have one? (3) Do we need reserve for Standard & Poore’s rating?
* Siggelkow answers: (1) Yes. (2) No, city does not cover Park Board. (3) No, staff recommends a reserve of 5% but commissioners can make it whatever they feel is prudent.
* Kummer suggests increasing and using Minnehaha Park revenue via food sales and parking fees to LRT users.
* Olson is concerned about the 50% cut in Summer Playgrounds program. Lots of kids have no other place to go. Cutting it is “out of the question.”
* Berrgy Graves concurs with Olson and with Young on the Environmental Education program. Says they need to brainstorm to find ways not to cut such crucial programs.
* Hauser is also concerned about Summer Playgrounds. She asks what are better places to cut?
** Administration & Finance Committee Adjourns
** Regular Meeting is reconvened.
8.1 is removed from the agenda.
8.2 to approve policies and procedures for Superintendent Search [this was a circus]
* Young: when are we going to discuss criteria, etc. We are short on time [before hire date].
* Olson: we will discuss it tonight to avoid getting behind.
* Hauser asks for staff presentation.
* Asst. super. Siggelkow sits in for Mary Page of Human Resources. Staff needs answers to a variety of questions: 1. How long will each finalist inteview be, and what are the questions that will be asked? 2. Public Input Process – suggests that public submit questions in writing to Mary Page who will filter them for the December 1 presenting to finalists. 3. Need to decide whether commissioners will or will not contact finalists directly. 4. Appointment date is December 8, some blanks need to be filled in.
* Erwin states the decisions need to be made tonight. Suggests deciding on how many finalists board can vote for before getting into the process, maybe 4 or 5.
* Olson says there are currently 8 semi-finalists and there will be 3 to 5 finalists.
* Young says in the public input process, she wants to see all of the public’s questions sent to Mary Page, even if only some of them can or will be asked. She says commissioners should not contact finalists.
* Olson conducts a straw poll on contacting finalists. 5 in favor of NOT contacting, so there will be no contact.
* Berry Graves wants a records and background check done on the 3 to 5 finalists.
* Olson thinks it is an excellent idea and conducts another straw poll. 5 in favor, so that is the policy.
* Mason says she heard there were 14 semi-finalists, but Olson said 8. Clarify who are the 8.
Answer: the 8 semi-finalists are in the superintendent search report handed out tonight.
* Hauser wants to group questions [from the public] together into similar questions and only ask one/once. It will take 3 days for Mary Page to do so.
Friday before the interviews [Dec. 1?] will be deadline for public input.
* Dziedzic asks if they can get a list of questions they are NOT allowed to ask?
* Olson says no, but Mary Page will handle it. Someone else mentions they had
been given data practices guidelines before and can go by those.
* Erwin suggests setting half an hour per finalist for public questions to keep it from going too long. He asks if they can get a copy of the video interviews that Oldani did.
* Olson says whether a video exists or not depends on circumstances, not all on video.
** Superintendent Search discussion continued.
* Olson says all finalists will be in room to interview at same time, thus a
fixed time period of say 2 hours for public questions. [while short, it at
least eliminates the problem of trying to ask the exact same question in the
exact same way. I bet they only get through 3 or 4 questions, however, if
they have 5 finalists.]
* Young believs the superintendent search committee should have done some of this work.
* Olson says they should have done it sooner. [but he is clearly intent upon getting through all of this tonight, and seems to have forgottent that he specifically charged the committee with coming up with only a timeline for the search and none of the rest of these obviously needed ground rules]
* Erwin suggests 2 hours for public questions.
* Olson takes straw poll and 5 favor this, so policy is 2 hours for public questions.
* Staff wants to know how long the board will interview each candidate? [the board will question the candidates the day before the public questions]
* 1 hour each, by show of hands straw poll.
* Staff will try to get interviews on cable TV, and will definitely web broadcast the interviews.
* Counsel Rice asks about question list and numbers[?] from Young’s folder from last year’s aborted search.
* Erwin asks when and how will finalists be disclosed to public.
* Staff says in a press release when board members know who they are.
* Kummer asks which questions do “we” ask? How do we maintain control of public questions?
* Mason does not want to be limited to asking candidates the questions from last year. She has her own question she would like to ask.
* Hauser wants board to ask public questions.
* Mason says Mary Page or someone should ask the public questions.
* Olson asks for show of hands. The “Usual Five” want the board to ask the questions. Or do they want to have the public read the questions from script so they cannot deviate?
* Dziedzic wants to get this straight.
* Olson describes how it works again.
* Dziedzic asks how do we pick which public member gets to read the question?
Don’t want to have all members from one part of town.
* Olson says Mary Page will decide how to pick.
* Hauser asks how?
* Fine mumbles something inaudible out of turn — something he recently and frequently jumps on the other board members for, calling it worse than Dziedzic’s angry assault at the August 18 meeting.
* Olson says Mary Page will read the question if the person from the public is not present.
* Asst. super. Siggelkow will draft up the conclusions made just now on the process.
* Dziedzic begins to talk about something but is interrupted by Olson who bangs his gavel and says he is out of order.
** Reports of Officers
** No verbal report from interim superintendent Jon Gurban whose father died recently and is not present.
** Asst. super. Schmidt reports on Halloween parties at rec centers. Had a large turnout and successful night.
* Kummer says she went to Lake Hiawatha center in costume and handed out candy.
* Berry Graves thanks the staff for a job very well done.
* Dziedzic says the turnout of 15,700 (kids and adult, mostly kids) is about one-third of Minneapolis schools.
* Erwin mentions a Halloween parade in Seward lead by Park Police.
* Fine says he hit five different parks and that attendance was slightly down.
* Olson says they missed the best haunted house in the city at Creekview.
** Asst. super. Rietkerk reports on solar panels and lighting, or would have had any been installed. They are just starting at Matthews.
** Asst. super. Siggelkow reports on the City’s proposed storm water sewer fee which could cost the Park Board $500,000 a year in new fees. He mentions how Columbia Park seems to be a storm water holding place. He says they will be seeking an exemption from the fee based on the idea of the parks being more a part of the storm sewer system, rather than a contributor to storm water run off.
*** Consent business.
2.1, 7.1 and 7.2 are all moved and approved. (7.1 & 7.2 are spending increase items from Admin & Finance)
*** Communications and Petitions
* Berry Graves talks about something to do with art at Heritage Park. [at this point, left over Halloween candy is being passed around the commissioners
and a bit of noise is being made]
* Fine says that staff says that the crinkling of candy wrappers is interfering with the sound on the video recording, which is done to DVD even when they are not on cable TV, and that they should turn off their “speakers” [microphones] when not in use.
* Dziedzic talks about visiting the Star Tribune Editorial Board and twisiting their arms about covering the Park Board. He thinks they should give the Editorial Board a tour between 11am and 2pm to eliminate some of the negative publicity and image the Park Board has gotten.