WILMETTE PARK DISTRICT

MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF THE
BOARD OF PARK COMMISSIONERS OF THE WILMETTE PARK DISTRICT
HELD IN THE COUNCIL ROOM OF WILMETTE VILLAGE HALL
MONDAY, AUGUST 14, 2006
_____________________________________________________________________

Written notice of said meeting was given to the Commissioners and the Wilmette Life in accordance with the Wilmette Park District Code, Section 2103, and Section 2.02 of the Open Meetings Act.


 

President Miller called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.


 

PRESENT: President David Miller, Commissioners Jim Brault, Diana Cohen, Richard Marcus, Dennis O’Malley, Secretary/Director Terry Porter


 

STAFF: Business Manager George Kush, Superintendent Lambrecht


 

ABSENT: Commissioners Crowley and Wolff


 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Commissioner Cohen moved and Commissioner Brault seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the Regular Board Meeting of July 10, 2006.


 

By a roll call vote, voting Yes -- Commissioners Brault, Cohen, Marcus, Miller, and O'Malley; voting No – None. Absent -- Commissioners Crowley and Wolff. Motion carried.


 

COMMUNICATIONS & CORRESPONDENCE: President Miller acknowledged receipt of the following:


 

. . . Letter dated August 9, 2006 from Fay Paras regarding skate parks with copies of articles from Chicago Tribune on July 31, 2006 and Time Magazine on August 7, 2006.


 

. . . Letter dated July 19, 2006 from Rev. John Pollard, Pastor, St. Joseph Parish thanking the Park District for the use of the Moonwalk for their Block Party/Parish Picnic.


 

. . . Letter dated July 17, 2006 to Bill Lambrecht from Julie Yusim, Executive Director, Wilmette Chamber of Commerce thanking Bill and Parks staff for their help with the 2006 Sidewalk Sale and the use of the Moonwalk for the event.


 

. . . Letter dated July 10, 2006 from Bill Bringham, Sr., President Chicago Metro Alumni Chapter of Sigma Chi commending Cliff Butler and the food services staff for the excellent food and services provided for the Sigma Chi Golf Outing in June.


 

. . . Letter dated July 10, 2006 from Bill Bringham, Sr., President Chicago Metro Alumni Chapter of Sigma Chi commending Dennis Callaghan and the golf staff for the excellent services provided for the Sigma Chi Golf Outing in June.


 

. . . Letter received August 4, 2006 from Carol Farrell, 1300 Sheridan Road inquiring about the possibility of purchasing a triangular section of beach which intersects between her property and Lake Michigan.


 

President Miller referred the letter to the Real Estate Committee.


 

. . . Letter dated July 27, 2006 from Patricia Hefter, 232 Charles Place expressing concerns about the tennis court surface at Hibbard Park.


 

President Miller referred the letter to the Parks and Recreation Committee.


 

. . . E-mails received in June and July, 2006 from “Jane Smith” expressing concerns about non residents receiving permanent tee time at the golf course and alleging that former residents are still being allowed in the lottery.


 

President Miller referred the letter to the Golf Operations Committee.


 

. . . E-mail dated July 27, 2006 from Angela McInerney, 853 Sheridan Road recommending banning smoking at Gillson swim beach.


 

. . . E mail dated July 11, 2006 from Frank Oatess referring to his earlier e-mail of June 6, 2006 requesting a shelter at the dog beach.


 

It was noted that Mr. Oatess’ first e-mail had already been referred to the Parks and Recreation Committee..


 

. . . Copy of e-mail dated August 4, 2006 from Debra Behles to Village Manager Mike Earl regarding concerns about conditions at Langdon Park, with a copy of Mr. Earl’s response.


 

. . . Letter dated July 21, 2006 from Jeff Later, 1009 Elmwood Ave. regarding problems at both Gillson Beach and Langdon Park.

. . . Letter dated July 24, 2006 from Director Porter to Jeff Later explaining that his suggestion about restricting street parking in the beach area to Wilmette residents only is illegal.


 

. . . E-mail dated July 17, 2006 from Betsy Segal, 909 Chestnut Ave. expressing concerns about the conditions at Langdon Park .


 

. . . Copy of e-mail dated August 4, 2006 to Village Manager Mike Earl from Sam Stilp regarding the Langdon Park congestion problem.


 

. . . Copy of e-mail dated July 20, 2006 to Village Manager Mike Earl from M. Christerson relating an unpleasant incident at Gillson Park and expressing concerns about the congestion and use of the beach and Langdon Park by non residents.


 

. . . Copy of letter dated July 26, 2006 to Police Chief Carpenter from Dean and Carl Lindsay, 808 Chestnut reporting a problem encountered with young men at the Langdon Park beach and noting that there is an upsetting and recurring trend of bad behavior in the area.


 

. . . Copy of e-mail dated July 17, 2006 to Village President Chris Canning from Richard P. Steinken, 900 Chestnut expressing concerns about the amount of traffic and non resident use of the beach at Langdon Park and the many problems being caused.


 

President Miller referred all correspondence relating to Langdon Park and Gillson Park to the Parks and Recreation Committee.


 

. . . Letter dated July 28, 2006 from Charles S. and Myrna L. Green, 219 Westmoreland protesting granting a variance to retain the smokestack at Mallinckrodt.


 

. . . Copy of e-mail to Lali Watt dated July 26, 2006 from Earl and Merle Glass protesting keeping the smokestack at Mallinckrodt.


 

. . . E-mail from Pat Griffith, 1919 Highland Ave. thanking the Park District for having friendly employees at the fitness center at 5:30 a.m. and suggesting that the planting beds in front of the CRC be mulched.


 


 


 


 


 

APPROVAL OF VOUCHER LIST:


 

Commissioner Brault moved and Commissioner Cohen seconded a motion to approve the Voucher List in the amount of $2,513,436.91, a copy of which is to be attached to and become a permanent part of the minutes of this meeting.


 

By a roll call vote, voting Yes -- Commissioners Brault, Cohen, Marcus, Miller, and O'Malley; voting No – None. Absent -- Commissioners Crowley and Wolff. Motion carried.


 

COMMITTEE REPORTS:


 

Parks and Recreation -- Committee Chair Cohen reported that the Committee met on July 19th. At that time, the Committee reviewed the bids for the interior space at Mallinckrodt and it was agreed that since the bids for the various components of the project were higher than the original estimates, there would be Board discussion prior to approval of the bids by the Board.


 

Director Porter explained that the bid numbers came in significantly higher than the initial budget estimate. The original estimates were prepared by staff in early 2006 prior to having architectural drawings and Village review. In addition to increases in construction costs, there were a number of additional items that were not anticipated, which are a result of retrofitting a 90 year old building. Director Porter noted that at this point, the estimated cost for the project is approximately $1.5 million, which includes architectural fees, demolition and Village Plan review. Director Porter pointed out that the District received a $300,000 contribution from the developer earmarked towards the cost of construction of the District space.


 

Director Porter stated that it was suggested by Commissioner Brault that the Park District consider a free standing building on the site to accommodate the senior center and community center needs. It was felt that it might be more cost effective to build a new free standing building rather than retrofit the existing space. Director Porter reported that staff asked the construction manager, W.B. Olson, to provide a rough cost estimate for a 7,000 square foot building that would be architecturally compatible with the Mallinckrodt Building. The estimate for this type of facility, which was provided to the Board at tonight’s meeting, proved to be a more costly undertaking than the cost for retrofitting the interior space at Mallinckrodt. Director Porter also explained that the concept of a free standing building presents several challenges. First and foremost is lack of available space on which to place a building. He noted that a significant portion of the site is protected from building construction by the Open Lands Trust agreement, which encompasses most of the western section of the property except for an area along Elmwood Avenue. The areas immediately north and south of the main building are heavily wooded and a new building could not be constructed without significant tree removal. He stated that an area that possibly could be considered, but is likely to be too small, is the area immediately east of the proposed parking lot. An additional obstacle for any plan is the addition of new impervious surface, which will require more storm water detention than is currently planned. It would also entail the cost and time involved to re-file for a new special use permit for a free standing building. Director Porter also noted that the final challenge would be negotiating with the developer to sell back the 6,095 square foot section of the ground floor of the building.


 

During Board discussion, it was pointed out that the cost estimates include a back-up generator which could be removed from the plans and would cut costs by approximately $75,000 to $80,000. Superintendent Lambrecht explained that it was felt that in addition to providing power during power failures for the Park District space in the building, the center could serve as a refuge for people during power outages in extremely hot or cold weather. Commissioner Cohen stated that she felt this was a very important part of the plans and the Park District could be doing an excellent service for the community, so she was in favor of retaining the generator. It was the consensus of the Board to retain the generator in the plans.


 

There was also discussion regarding the financial aspects of the project. Director Porter explained that the 2002 referendum authorized issuance up to $25 million in General Obligation Bonds for the acquisition of all or a part of the Mallinckrodt property, and that the entire parcel was purchased for $20 million. He noted that as a result of the sale of the building to Mallinckrodt Residences LLC for $3.5 million, the $300,000 contribution for build out of the community center space, and the $2 million grant from the State of Illinois, a total of $16.5 million in bonds were issued, of which approximately $15.2 million has been spent leaving a $1.3 million balance available which can be applied towards both the community center space and park development. Director Porter further noted that there is approximately $8.5 million in General Obligation bonding still available to the District, and staff feels that while exact costs are not known, it will probably be necessary to issue approximately $2 million in bonds to complete all parts of the park and community center development. Therefore, even with an additional bond issue, the overall cost for acquisition and development of the Mallinckrodt property will be significantly less than what the community approved. In response to a question from Commissioner Brault, Director Porter stated that a $2 million bond issue over 20 years would raise the average tax bill in the community by approximately $15 per year.


 

Commissioner Cohen moved and Commissioner Marcus seconded a motion to approve the following bids for the Senior/Community Center space in the Mallinckrodt Building:


 

Fabbri Masonry, Highwood, IL in the amount of $44,500 for masonry work

 

Mutual Services, Highland Park, IL in the amount of $22,000 for structural steel and miscellaneous metals


 

R. Rudnick & Company, Wheeling, IL in the amount of $179,497 for carpentry work


 

Illini Hardware, Crystal Lake, IL in the amount of $48,650 for door frames and hardware


 

Industrial Door Company, Elk Grove Village, IL in the amount of $6,595 for overhead doors


 

Christopher Glass & Aluminum, Arlington Heights, IL in the amount of $12,200 for glass and aluminum


 

Kole Construction Company, Inc., Romeoville, IL in the amount of $140,200 for drywall, acoustics and insulation


 

All Type Tile, Skokie, IL in the amount of $25,500 to supply and install ceramic tile


 

Flooring Solutions, Inc., Hinsdale, IL in the amount of $22,300 to supply and install all carpeting


 

Soutsos Decorating, Long Grove, IL in the amount of $36,300 for interior painting and wallpaper


 

Modernfold Doors of Chicago, Westmont, IL in the amount of $8,800 for a manually operating partition for multi purpose room


 

Boelter Contracting, LLC, Lincolnwood, IL in the amount of $19,364 for kitchen equipment and shelving


 

Ostman Plumbing, Northbrook, IL in the amount of $72,157 for building plumbing

Great Lakes Fire Protection, Barrington, IL in the amount of $56,900 to supply and install a fire sprinkler system


 

Rush Mechanical Contractors, Inc., Lockport, IL in the amount of $232,100 for HVAC work


 

Shoreline Electric, Wheeling, IL in the amount of $229,214 for electrical work


 

By a roll call vote, voting Yes -- Commissioners Brault, Cohen, Marcus, Miller, and O'Malley; voting No – None. Absent -- Commissioners Crowley and Wolff. Motion carried.


 

Commissioner Cohen further reported that at the meeting, the Committee reviewed correspondence regarding a request that a shelter be constructed at the dog beach and that special hours be set aside at the dog beach for small dogs only. The Committee felt that even though these are worthy projects, it is not feasible to implement them.


 

Commissioner Cohen also reported that staff presented two possible skate park designs which resulted from meetings held with potential users. To date, staff has reviewed three alternative locations in Hibbard Park for the skate park and has selected the small eastern parking lot at the Community Recreation Center as the potential site for the facility because this area is farther away from residences, the amount of additional impervious surface would be greatly reduced and there is already substantial screening around the area. The location is designed to have two areas for different age groups – smaller equipment for novices and younger children and larger equipment for the experienced skaters. Commissioner Cohen noted that the two current designs show sizes of either 6,280 square feet or 7,560 square feet, both of which are less than the 10,000 square feet originally anticipated. She also explained that the area would be land-banked north of the existing north parking lot if additional parking needed to be added to replace the space lost in the plan. It would be surrounded with a six foot high vinyl-coated chain link fence and the gates would have latches and closers attached. The surface would be concrete, which is quieter than asphalt. Commissioner Cohen explained that Director Porter had stated that the purpose of showing the plans to the Committee was to update them on the process and the next step will be for staff and the designers to meet with the users to refine the final design. As soon as that part of the process is completed, staff will obtain authorization from the Board to set up a meeting with the surrounding neighbors to present the final design and listen to their comments. Everyone within 250 feet of the property will receive notice of the meeting.


 

Commissioner Cohen concluded her report by noting that Commissioner Brault had asked that the two Pinto fields at Thornwood Park be updated with more player bench space and warm-up areas for batters. Staff reported that the work could be completed prior to next season.


 

Commissioner O’Malley referred to the letters regarding the problems being experienced at Langdon Park. There was brief discussion, and Director Porter noted that the Park District is already in the process of addressing the issues and has begun working with the Police Department to alleviate the problems. He added that there will be a comprehensive review of the situation by both the Park District and the Village, especially relative to parking problems, prior to the start of the next lakefront season.


 

Golf Operations – Committee Chair O’Malley reported that the Committee met on July 22nd. He stated that there have been many positive comments regarding the condition of the course. He also noted that the electric golf carts have been very well received.


 

Commissioner O’Malley noted that due to the excellent condition of the course and the beautiful weather which has been experienced this season, rounds of golf have significantly increased. As of July 22nd, 23,000 rounds had been played, which is an approximate ten percent increase over last year at the same time. It was also noted that non resident rounds are up 27%, which is due to the great condition of the golf course and the new clubhouse. Due to the new irrigation system, there is more time for golf staff to tend to aesthetic matters instead of infrastructure. With regard to the Emerald Ash Borer problem, Commissioner O’Malley stated that after an evaluation by staff, it has been determined that approximately twenty percent of the trees at the golf course are Ash Trees. The District is waiting for direction from the State regarding how to deal with the problem.


 

Commissioner O’Malley further reported that the Committee held discussion about the disappointing performance of the food services operation. Staff will be looking at several options to deal with the issue.


 

Centennial Operations -- In Committee Chair Crowley’s absence, Commissioner Marcus reported on the meeting which was held on July 10th. He stated that Ice/ Pool Manager Terry Juliar explained that due to poor weather in June and the beginning of July, there was a negative effect on programming at the pool. Staff had to offer make-up swim lessons for the first time in 18 years. With regard to the Summer Competitive Skating Program, Mr. Juliar reported that due to neighboring districts having rebuilt their refrigeration systems and being open for the summer, walk-up traffic has been diminished as the skaters now have their home rinks available.

Commissioner Marcus further reported that Superintendent Grisamore reviewed the six month financial statements for the Pool, Tennis, and Ice facilities. The Pool net surplus through the end of June was 10.1% ahead of last year due to good pre-season pass sales and excellent Memorial Day weekend weather. The month of June showed a drop in net income due to the poor weather. With regard to the Tennis facility, the net surplus is up 14.5% due to increased revenue from the lesson programs and it is anticipated that despite high utility costs, the facility will reach its budgeted surplus. With regard to the Ice facility, Commissioner Marcus reported that the net surplus through the end of June is up 59.8%. However, the high cost of utilities tied in with the projected large increase in electrical rates this fall will have a negative effect on the facility. It is possible that hourly ice charges may have to be adjusted beginning in January rather than in April or May as is usually the case. After discussion, the Committee concurred that new rates have to be established now so that the user groups can factor in the increased cost in their budgets. Terry Juliar was directed to inform the Wilmette Hockey Association that ice rates may increase somewhat in January in the range of $275 to $295 an hour and invite representatives to the next Committee meeting to discuss the actual increase amount.


 

Financial Planning & Policy -- Committee Chair Brault reported that the Committee met on August 9th. At that time, the Committee reviewed and discussed the Financial Statements for the year ended December 31, 2005. He noted that the statements were given an unqualified opinion by the District’s auditing firm, KPMG.


 

Commissioner Brault moved and Commissioner Cohen seconded a motion to accept the Audited Financial Statements for the year ended December 31, 2005 as recommended by the Financial Planning & Policy Committee.


 

By a roll call vote, voting Yes -- Commissioners Brault, Cohen, Marcus, Miller, and O'Malley; voting No – None. Absent -- Commissioners Crowley and Wolff. Motion carried.


 

Commissioner Brault stated that the Committee has asked KPMG to prepare a formal engagement letter for the 2006 audit, which will be presented to the Board for approval at the September meeting.


 

Commissioner Brault further reported that the Committee reviewed a letter from the attorney for the intergovernmental cooperative, of which the Park District is a member, regarding assessment appeals. Commissioner Brault had requested that the Committee review the rationale and basis for Park District objections to assessment appeals. After review and discussion of the letter, the Committee agreed that the financial benefits derived from the legal proceedings exceed the costs.


 

Commissioner Brault concluded his report by noting that the Committee will be meeting on a monthly basis prior to Board meetings. He also reported that the staff will be preparing models for enhancements to the Voucher List, which will include noting single expenditures of $25,000 or more, excluding routine expenditures, and any expenditures that may exceed budget.


 

MALLINCKRODT:


 

Director Porter reported that staff members, consultants, and Attorney Charlene Holtz appeared before the Zoning Board on July 19th The Zoning Board unanimously approved the plans for Mallinckrodt as presented and recommended approval to the Village Board. Many positive comments were received from the Zoning Board about the plans and the quality of the application and presentation. Director Porter stated that at the August 8, 2006 meeting, the Village Board unanimously approved the plans as presented. He noted that the Village Board members expressed satisfaction with the proposed plans, and were complimentary about the level of intergovernmental cooperation that led to the current total Mallinckrodt plan.


 

Director Porter explained that as part of the Village Board approval, the variation to retain the chimney was approved, and staff will be working to seek possible telecommunications providers. He noted that any telecommunications devices on the chimney will require Village approval and a special use application must be presented by the cellular provider. He stated that bid documents for open space development from 3-D Design should be ready by mid to late September.


 

DIRECTOR’S REPORT:


 

Director Porter reported that the pool is operating on reduced hours as a good many staff members have left for college and high school sports. The pool will be open through Labor Day. Regular camp programs ended on August 11th and camp extensions and special programs will be offered for an additional two weeks. Director Porter noted that Dick Miller, Director of the Great Gillson Camp for 28 years, has retired as of the end of this camp session. He stated that many current and former campers and counselors turned out at a retirement event to honor Dick, who was the guiding light behind the Great Gillson Camp. He will continue to train counselors and directors for the camp programs.


 

Director Porter also reported that the USGA came out to evaluate the golf course and the final report should be received shortly. The preliminary report noted the improvements to the course and there will be some suggestions. There was an offer for USGA staff to evaluate whether there are some trees which should be moved or removed.


 

Commissioner Cohen inquired about the tennis courts at Hibbard Park. She noted that there had been a complaint from a tennis player about the new surface. Director Porter explained that Tennis Manager Darrell Smith played at Hibbard and stated he felt that the surface is fine, but is a little different than surfaces previously used and it may take some time for some players to adjust to the new surface .


 

NEW BUSINESS:


 

Commissioner Marcus moved and Commissioner Brault seconded a motion to approve Resolution 2006-R-8, A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING INTERVENTION IN A PENDING PROPERTY TAX ASSESSMENT APPEAL (WALTER OVAERT).


 

By a roll call vote, voting Yes -- Commissioners Brault, Cohen, Marcus, Miller, and O'Malley; voting No – None. Absent -- Commissioners Crowley and Wolff. Motion carried


 

There being no further business to conduct, the meeting was adjourned at 8:40 p.m.


 


 

MINUTES APPROVED ON SEPTEMBER 11, 2006