Skip Navigation
This table is used for column layout.
Park Commission Minutes 08/01/2017
Minutes of Park Commission Meeting
Held on Tuesday, August 1, 2017
Recreation Office, Town Hall at 6:00pm

1. Call Meeting to Order:               
Mr. Wood called the meeting to order at 6:00 pm.  Members present were Mr. Wood, Mr. Bowen and Mr. Chaves. Also present, Mr. Santos.

2. Minutes to Approve:
A. Public Session – June 29, 2017
Mr. Wood motioned to accept the minutes as written, seconded by Mr. Bowen and carried…
Vote: 3 - 0, in favor

Mr. Wood requested the Park Commission review Agenda Item 8A. as Mr. Hunter (who was present) was under time constraints due to another meeting scheduled to take place later that evening.
8A. Community Development Dept seeking letter of support (for CPC application) from Park Commission for downtown Rotary project
Mr. Hunter presented the Park Commission with the latest downtown rotary and South Street rehab designs.  Mr. Hunter explained that the Planning Dept had hired a firm to design the plans and that through the process a committee was formed to gather input from stakeholders in the community.  As part of the discussions it was recommended by the State that both the rotary project and rehab of South Street be completed at the same time.  Mr. Hunter stated that the Planning Department would be putting together an application to seek funding in the amount of $2.5M to complete the project.  Mr. Hunter stated that he was planning on applying for $325K from the Community Preservation Committee in order to help offset some of the project costs.  He stated that if approved the CPC funds would be put towards the Liberty Park rehab portions of the proposed project.  Mr. Hunter asked for the Park Commissioners feedback and support of his application to CPC.  Mr. Chaves stated that the amount of $325K was higher than he had expected and felt that this project was more of an economic development project opposed to a Park and Recreation project.  Mr. Hunter stated that if CPC funds were approved it would potentially allow for additional trees, benches and other landscaping amenities within other areas of the overall project.
Mr. Chaves stated that he had concerns with use of CPC funds for this project and questioned how many people would benefit from the use of those funds for this specific project, opposed to improving other park areas that needed immediate renovations.  
Mr. Bowen asked if the use of CPC funding for this specific project would potentially impact any future CPC funding requests on behalf of the Park Commission.  Mr. Santos explained that the CPC funds the planning department was seeking to use would be the same funds the Park Commission could use for some of their future projects (Beach Renovation, Playground Improvements, Wood Park Pavilion replacement, etc…). Mr. Santos also stated that the percentage of CPC matching funds from the State in recent years had been lower than when originally adopted by Town. Mr. Wood stated that he liked the plans as presented but support from the Park Commission for use of CPC funds was not in line with the short term facility improvement goals of the Park Commission.  Mr. Chaves agreed with Mr. Woods comment.
Mr. Chaves asked Mr. Hunter if future maintenance costs specific to Liberty Park gardens and gardens at and around the rotary had been considered. Mr. Hunter stated that DPW had been involved in the design process and made recommendations on short term and long term maintenance plans. Mr. Hunter also stated that the there was a movement with downtown merchants and property owners to create a Business Improvement District (BID) and that if created that some maintenance costs for certain downtown areas may be absorbed by the BID.
Mr. Wood motioned to approve a letter of support for the Planning Department to use as part of their application to seek and use Community Preservation Committee funds for the downtown Rotary and South Street rehab projects. Seconded by Mr. Chaves and carried…
Vote: 0 – 3, the motion was Denied

3. Citizens Issues / Special Interest Groups:
B. Residents Mercedes Tiffany Murphy and Kelly Shultz were present to learn more about the current status of playground repairs and future renovation plans – See Agenda Item 7A.

4. Personnel:
A. None

5. Director’s Report:
A. HYBS use of fields for Softball Tournaments
Mr. Santos informed the Park Commission that HYBS was hoping to run a youth softball tournament in the late spring of 2018, utilizing the O’Donnell fields.
B. HYBS Boutwell 2 Outfield Fence Replacement
Mr. Santos informed the Park Commission that he would be working with HYBS to potentially replace the existing outfield fence at B2 and that HYBS was interested in installing a permanent fence.  Mr. Santos explained to the commission the installation of a permanent fence would most likely not be possible due the fall athletic activities that take place on that field.
C. HYSA potential use of Lights on Intel Field
Mr. Santos informed the Park Commission that HYSA was looking to use portable lighting towers at the Intel field (Technology Drive) as early as the fall of 2017.  Discussion followed and the commissioners collectively stated that they had no issues with the use of portable lighting towers at this location as long as HYSA receives approval from DPW and/or any other town officials/boards/committees as needed.  The commissioners suggested Mr. Santos check with the Executive Assistant on any restrictions and then relay that information directly to HYSA.
D. FY17 End of Year Account Balances
Mr. Santos presented that Park Commission with the End of Year Account balances that were submitted to the Finance Department.

6. Communications and/or Correspondence to be noted by Commissioners:
A. OARS requesting approval for installation of permanent signage at canoe launch areas.
The Park Commission reviewed the request from OARS to have permanent “Canoe Access” signs installed at the Chapin Road Boat Launch Site and Cellucci Park (Note: other requested areas not under the jurisdiction of the Park Commission were Hudson Public Library parking lot and the river access point directly off of Cox Street, adjacent to Hudson Fire Department Headquarters).  Mr. Wood motioned to approve installation of the signs and associated installation costs at the Chapin Road Boat Launch Site and Cellucci Park subject to further approval for installation by DPW. Seconded by Mr. Bowen and carried…
Vote: 3 – 0, in favor  
B. Request from HYBS to install a Memorial Bench at Boutwell Fields complex
Mr. Wood stated that he felt the Park Commission should consider this request at a later time as recent similar requests had been put on hold until the Park Commission and Recreation Department established Bench Donation guidelines that were fair for all community members wishing to submit similar requests. Mr. Bowen agreed with Mr. Wood and asked Mr. Santos to consider putting together bench donation guidelines in the near future.

7. Old Business:
A. Update on Playground Repairs
Mr. Santos informed the Park Commission that he and his staff had discussed future removal of playground apparatus (based on the report findings) by the fall of 2017 with DPW and that they were willing to assist with this project.  Mr. Santos explained that he would be working with his staff to come up with a short term plan for playground improvements based on the available funding and safety issues highlighted in the reports.  Mr. Santos also stated that he had met with Forest Ave Home and School to discuss the much needed improvements to their school playground (considered to be a high priority) and that by the end of the month modifications would be made to the high priority playground areas at Forest Ave School.  Mr. Santos suggested that community playground needs be discussed and included in the public forums that the Park Commission was planning to organize in the fall of 2017.  Hudson residents Mercedes Tiffany Murphy and Kelly Shultz both expressed the need for updated playgrounds, accessibility for all, shade, seating/benches, playgrounds that are fenced in and playgrounds that are walkable and near the downtown area.  Discussion followed.  Both residents, expressed interest in assisting the Recreation Department in the future with this project.  
Mr. Santos asked the Park Commission for input on when to hold the public forums and suggested that both Ms. Murphy and Ms. Shultz attend and encourage others to attend the public forums in order to express their concerns and make suggestions as to what they felt would be ideal for the Hudson community.  Ms. Shultz suggested that the public forums be held at various times, perhaps one in the morning and another in the evening to allow greater access for all residents.  Discussion followed.
The Park Commission suggested that Mr. Santos schedule two public forums sometime starting in late September or early October, to be held at a publicly accessible location in order to seek input and comments from residents on what facility improvements/additions, recreational amenities and general needs specific to Park and Recreation are desired.

8. New Business:
A. Community Development Dept seeking letter of support (for CPC application) from Park Commission for downtown Rotary project – Discussion on this matter took place immediately following Agenda Item 2A.
B.  Park Commission to consider a donation in amount of $5000.00 from Hudson Youth Dek Hockey
Mr. Wood motioned to accept the donation of $5000.00 from the Hudson Youth Dek Hockey Program for improvements to the Warren Chamberlain Skating Rink and immediate facility surroundings. Seconded by Mr. Chaves and carried…
Vote: 3 -0, in favor
Mr. Santos stated that he would send the donation information and Park Commission comments to the Board of Selectmen for final confirmation and acceptance.
Mr. Bowen motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:00 pm seconded by Mr. Chaves and carried...  
Vote: 2 – 0, in favor. Note: Mr. Wood excused himself from the meeting at approximately 7:50pm.  

Motion to Adopt:        Mr. Wood        
Second:         Mr. Bowen
Vote:                   3 – 0, in favor
Date:                   October 11, 2017