Commissioners OK Most Of Recreation Plan

 

June 19, 2017



The Parks & Recreation Master Plan for Transylvania County and the City of Brevard was approved, in part, by the Board of Commissioners last week.

During their regular meeting, commissioners approved the master plan, leaving out references to a vision for operations and staffing, and finances that would relate to a joint parks and recreation authority between the county and the city.

Consolidating the county’s and city of Brevard’s parks and recreation services into one jointly funded department and building a $19 million recreation center and neighborhood park are among the recommendations in the Parks and Recreation Master Plan, which was unveiled in September of last year.

In August 2014, commissioners and the Brevard City Council established a task force to develop a parks and recreation plan, which has cost about $103,000 and shared between the city and county.

Since the plan’s rollout last year, the city council has indicated it’s not interested at this time to consolidate under one parks and recreation authority. The council, however, has suggested working on joint parks and recreation projects.

County staff recommended to commissioners to adopt part of the plan, as it’s needed to qualify for grants.

Commissioner Page Lemel said there is “so much good stuff” in the master plan.

She said that even with leaving out the consolidation issue the plan lays out guidance and recommendations for recreation programming that are “essential” for adult health and opportunities for the county’s youth.

“(I) think this is a great first step for us and (I’m) certainly open that the City of Brevard will once again engage with us on conversations, so that we might be able to work forward for the best services in a small community, and work together to achieve these goals,” Lemel said.

When asked what the next steps are, County Manager Jaime Laughter said work is already being done.

The county, for one, is waiting on an evaluation of its Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance at its recreation sites.

The county and the city are also holding monthly meetings, which include identifying long-range projects both bodies can partner on.

Laughter said the county could also master plan its parks fee schedules.

Lemel said the county does have a shortage of small parks and the community centers and the schools could be opportunities to partner on recreation.

She said the key word is “collaboration.”

She said when entities in the community work together “great things” can be achieved.

Commission Chairman Larry Chapman said the master plan does have “great recommendations” but it would take $38 million to meet all of them. He said that with “limited resources,” the public needs to provide input on “priorities.”

The recreation master plan may be viewed at http://www.tcpr.recdesk.com/recdeskportal/.

 
 

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