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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Medford City Council Study Session

February 26, 2009


The meeting was called to order at 12:02 in Room 151 of the Lausmann Annex with the following members present.


Mayor Gary Wheeler; Councilmembers Bob Strosser, Jill Stout, James Kuntz, Chris Corcoran, Dick Gordon, Greg Jones, Ben Truwe and Al Densmore.


  1. Pool Maintenance & Operations:  Parks & Recreation Director Brian Sjothun addressed the council and provided an overview of the current conditions and needs for the aquatic facilities. He provided a briefing on studies done in 1981, 2006 and 2007 indicating the community interest and support for improved aquatics facilities.  All three reports recommended an improved aquatics system, including indoor pools.  At the June 2008 council goal setting, the council designated the Aquatics Center as a “community led goal”. 


He referred to the REMI Report that evaluated key fiscal and economic implications of four facility configurations; a small outdoor swim park, an outdoor regional swim park, an outdoor super regional swim park and an indoor aquatic center.  He reviewed the costs for development and operation of these options.  There are steps needed to move forward with these recommendations such as researching funding options, land use planning, selling bonds, etc.


Recreation Supervisor Rich Rosenthal then presented information on the existing pools and repair/maintenance issues that must be addressed in order to open the existing pools for the upcoming season.  Issues at both pools include deterioration to the tiles, surfaces and pool walls, deck separation, mechanical system failures, and structural issues.  He reported the estimated costs to repair the issues are $57,000 for Jackson Pool and $44,600 for Hawthorne Pool.  Mr. Sjothun then presented options considered by the Parks & Recreation Commission for each pool. 


Council direction is being sought on addressing the municipal pool options and the REMI report options.


Council questioned why funding for this was not included in budget and Mr. Sjothun noted that normal maintenance is budgeted but that these repairs are beyond what would be considered normal maintenance.  The pools are the Oregon’s oldest unimproved outdoor swimming pools and were built in 1950 and 1960. 


Council consensus is to move funds from contingency to perform necessary maintenance to open existing pools and move forward in pursuit of REMI report recommendations.


  1. Dispatch Consolidation:  Police Chief Randy Schoen addressed the council regarding recommendation from the consolidation steering committee.  He reviewed some of the issues that could be barriers to consolidation including governance, CAD integrations, ownership of CAD system, CAD debt, and infrastructure but noted that the committee has been able to agree on solutions to these issues.  The long term benefits include operational efficiencies, improvement in response times, economies of scale savings by the optimization of personnel, reduction of costs, and improved secure working environment.  In addition, with the relocation of RVCCOM to the new facility, the City of Medford would also gain additional office space for other department needs.


Chief Schoen noted in the short term that there may not be savings given the costs to move.  However, with today’s passage of the omnibus bill, there is funding coming that will cover these costs.


Committee recommends forming the executive board as soon as possible to ensure that the consolidation can move forward quickly and efficiently and Chief Schoen requested council direction on bringing forward a resolution directing participation of the executive board.  Council consensus was to have staff bring this forward.


The meeting adjourned at 1:20 p.m.




Glenda Owens

City Recorder

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