411 West 8th Street, Medford, Oregon
- Strategic Planning
411 West 8th Street, Medford, Oregon
The Medford City Council Study Session was called to order at 6:00 p.m. in the Medford Room of the Medford City Hall on the above date with the following members and staff present:
Mayor Gary Wheeler; Councilmembers Clay Bearnson, Chris Corcoran*, Dick Gordon, Tim Jackle, Eli Matthews, Kevin Stine*, Michael Zarosinski
City Manager Pro Tem Bill Hoke; City Attorney Lori Cooper; Deputy City Recorder Winnie Shepard
Councilmember Daniel Bunn was absent.
City Manager Pro Tem Bill Hoke spoke regarding the current format of the Agenda Item Commentary form. He asked if Council had objections to removing the strategic plan portion; Council had no objections; the change will begin with the March 17, 2016 agenda.
*Councilmember Stine arrived.
Strategic Plan - Technology Services/Parks & Recreation
Technology Services Director Doug Townsend responded to the question of how to do things better in his department with the following. (See attached list).
- Technology Services (TS) should be involved with any technology purchased for the City to reduce the cost of technology, leverage investments and to simplify the diversity of technology supported.
- Multiple departments utilize the GIS software and update information relevant to them, but donít necessarily consider what additional information could be added that would significantly help other departments.
- Departments should insure all data repositories are included in the emergency management plan, backed up and retained.
- TS is considering Citywide Chat, to enhance communication among staff.
- Trusted vendors have access to the Cityís network; a more effective means to monitor and log vendor access and activity is needed.
Incorporate GIS to Website
- Project A is currently revising the Cityís website; a draft should be complete within a few months.
- When complete, the website should work on mobile devices and scale appropriately.
- A staff member from each department is involved with revisions.
Councilís Concerns with Software Purchases
- More GIS features could be added to the Cityís website, but there are two different technologies involved.
- Council would like to integrate GIS technology for parking enforcement to count parking spaces or other information; also requested an overview map showing the parking spaces with hours.
Parks & Recreation
- Council doesnít see continuity regarding software purchases. Technology Services should play a bigger role in software purchases to prevent cost increases like the ERP situation.
- The Customer Relationship Management software was discussed and budgeted a couple years ago, but it never moved forward.That project has been budgeted and dropped several times.
- It appears that departments are operating independently and Council would like it more collaborative.
- Technology Services will need two dedicated employees to work on the ERP.
- Additional costs are planned for the next biennium to complete the ERP.
Parks & Recreation Director Brian Sjothun outlined various items in his department. (See attached list).
Parks & Recreation incorporated portions of the Leisure Services Plan and Medford in the 21st
Century Vision Plan to create the departmentís Strategic Plan. Mr. Sjothun noted that any future City Strategic Plan impacts more than the City of Medford and should include businesses, industries and agencies to create a true vision plan for the City.
Mr. Sjothun proposed a time saving measure for the Council to consider: to change the Cemetery and Mayorís Youth Advisory Commissions to Committees under the Parks & Recreation Commission, eliminating the need for a Council Liaison to attend both the Cemetery and Mayorís Youth Advisory meetings. The Arts Commission would remain unchanged.
- Additional staff in order to provide additional parks, trails and programming. No new parks can be built past the current biennium without additional maintenance personnel.
- Hard to recruit employees from outside of southern Oregon.
- Concern about staff burnout, because staff levels are well below other cities our size.
- Staff is encouraged to continue their professional and personal growth to allow promotion within the department.
- The first bond for USCCP is nearly paid off. Council has the opportunity to retain those resources to pay for park maintenance or as a potential funding source for a new aquatic/recreation center.
- If bonds are paid off, the revenue source goes away and they are difficult to resume.
- Debt service is paid from portions of the transient lodging tax, car rental tax and park utility fund; there are separate monthly charges for debt services and right-of-way/beautification services.
- Councilmember Gordon requested the interest rates and information on the bonds.
- All City parks are ADA accessible; Oregon Hills Park was developed specifically to assist autistic children.
- Concerns regarding parks not being serviced/maintained.
- Building new is easier, because SDC fees can be used. Repairs are paid from general fund money, which is limited and budgeted for other items.
- Community Needs Survey results indicated citizens would like improvements to the existing parks.
- It will cost $120,000 to replace the wooden structure at Bear Creek Park.
- Disc golf course would need a lot of land; itís included in the master plan for Chrissy Park.Another option is the Betty Root property off Spencer Street, but requirements to improve Spencer Street and add a parking lot, makes this site costly.
- The City pays $32,000 toward the major maintenance for the greenway.The goal is to remove non-native vegetation and potentially light the greenway to make it more attractive and safe.
- With schools limiting access to the public, more people are relying on our parks system.
- The Vietnam memorial is looking for a site within a City of Medford Park.The proposed memorial is too large to fit within Veterans Park.
- Parks is working to pave paths, increase lighting, and provide more shade and gazebos.
- A district could be formed, but it would need to go to a vote. Mr. Sjothun recommended building it for Medford first.Out-of-District fees and additional pricing structure could capture additional revenues to off-set operations.
- Council was concerned whether it could be a self-supporting operation.
- The land is not the issue; itís the cost to build and the on-going operational costs.
- The old dog park was not a preferred location, but did provide visibility for travelers on I-5.
- Collaborative discussions with Medford School District regarding an aquatic facility continue.
- The increases in transient lodging tax revenue could be used to subsidize an aquatic facility.
- Competitions may be held with a 20íx25í pool.
*Councilmember Corcoran left at 7:49 p.m.
The meeting adjourned 7:50 p.m.
Deputy City Recorder