CAC - May 28th 2013
Citizens Advisory Committee
May 28, 2013
The Citizens Advisory Committee met Tuesday, May 28, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. at the Mayfield Branch of the Cuyahoga County Library.
Brenda Bodnar (Chair), Sandy Batcheller, Lorry Nadeau, Steve Jerome, Carole Marrie, Mary Singer, Shirley Jay, Merv Singer
Joe Doran, Marilyn LaRiche-Goldstein, Kay Phillips, Joan Catalano
Tom Marrie (Council Representative), Diane Wolgamuth (Director of Administration)
Residents: Paul Simmons, Dave Hoehnen, Dave Hunter and Jean Triner
Approval of Minutes
The Committee approved the Minutes from the April 29, 2013 meeting, as written.
Community Room Discussion
Mrs. Bodnar asked Ms. Wolgamuth to give the Committee some background on the discussion regarding Community Room improvements. Ms. Wolgamuth related that Building Commissioner John Marelli has advised the Administration and Council that the Community Room is in need of repair and/or improvements and upgrading. This led to a discussion about whether the community would like to see the facility upgraded or would prefer that it be razed and rebuilt, in the same location or in a different location. Ms. Wolgamuth was asked to prepare a survey for Village residents to solicit their feedback and was also asked to discuss the issue and the survey with this Committee.
Mrs. Batcheller stated that she believes that the Community Room needs to be refurbished. She would like it to stay in the same location rather than moving it away from the center of town. She believes a brick façade would be more appealing.
Mrs. Bodnar asked if there were any cost estimates and Ms. Wolgamuth advised that Mr. Marrelli estimated that near-term repairs were approximately $85,000, long-term repairs would cost up to $175,000, and a major addition or alteration would cost $250,000 to $300,000. Ms. Wolgamuth stated that Mr. Marrelli estimated that the cost of building a new structure would be $250 to $300/sq. ft. or $1,400,000 to $1,700,000.
Mrs. Bodnar asked how the Community Room could be moved to the Civic Center site. Ms. Wolgamuth explained that there had been some discussion about using the current Civic Hall as the Community Room as it already has a larger, more efficient kitchen. This would require building additional meeting space onto the Civic Center to replace the Civic Hall and to be used for Council meetings. Mrs. Bodnar asked if there would be sufficient parking and Ms. Wolgamuth stated that the grassy area that was parsonage site could be used for additional parking.
Mrs. Bodnar asked the Committee members if they have rented the Community Room or tried to and couldn’t, because it was booked, which has been the case for her on several occasions.
Mrs. Singer stated that she has rented the Community Room and believes that the location is great for weddings as it is next to the gazebo. Photographers use it all the time. She feels that a better kitchen would be appreciated.
Mr. Marrie stated that he likes the Community Room for small parties and thinks it is a great deal. Mr. Marrie added that he definitely believes the kitchen needs to be redone but that the restrooms are adequate.
Mrs. Bodnar asked how many people the Community Room holds and Ms. Wolgamuth advised approximately 200 people. Mrs. Bodnar stated that 175 to 200 people is a pretty large wedding and asked if two smaller rooms would be better. Ms. Batcheller stated that she has had showers and a graduation party at the Community Room and believes one large room is more advantageous. She stated that she would hate to get rid of the current building and believes the cost of upkeep would be more if it were moved to the Civic Center. The Committee members agreed.
Mrs. Bodnar asked if there is sufficient parking at the Community Room and Ms. Wolgamuth advised that the Center School lots are available for use on weekends.
Mrs. Jay stated that she is at the Community Room for activities each week. She believes the facility works well but the kitchen is in bad shape and needs to be improved.
Mrs. Nadeau stated that she likes the Community Room where it is. Adding green space around it has given it another dimension. She likes the town center feel but believes the building needs an upgrade.
Mary Singer asked about the condition of the underlying structure. Mr. Marrie stated that it is decent. He does not believe that the Village needs a large, fancy facility—“that would be overkill”. Mr. Marrie suggested a brick façade and maybe a new kitchen.
Mrs. Jay asked if the survey had gone out yet. Ms. Wolgamuth advised that it had not and this is just a draft for discussion. Ms. Wolgamuth asked if the Committee thought the survey should list potential amenities if a new building is constructed or just provide a blank line for residents to fill in. The Committee members agreed that the blank line should be left for residents to come up with their own suggestions.
Mr. Haycox stated that now that the Village Hall is gone and the exterior is more visible, the building definitely needs a facelift.
Mr. Jerome stated that he thinks the new mounding looks awesome, but he thinks the building is an eyesore. He believes the Village is better off moving the Community Room to the Civic Center site and expanding the green space around the gazebo. Mrs. Bodnar asked if Mr. Jerome had heard that the cost to construct a new building is $1.5 to $1.75 million. Mr. Jerome responding that putting $200,000 to $300,000 into the old building was only going to go so far and only buy so many years. He believes the Civic Center is a much better facility. Mr. Jerome stated that it would be great to have a park at the center of town and maybe the gazebo could be moved further away from the street.
Mrs. Bodnar stated that location is important and she thinks cost will be important to residents. Ms. Wolgamuth asked if the Committee members think it would be a good idea to include projected costs in the survey. Mr. Haycox stated that he thought so and Mr. Jerome suggested including “useful life” calculations, i.e., $85,000 will get us five years, etc. Mrs. Batcheller stated that if estimated costs are included in the survey, it will cause negative responses.
Mr. Marrie agreed and stated that, at this stage, cost is not the issue. Our object is to get the thoughts of the residents. It seems obvious to everyone that something should be done. Mrs. Bodnar suggested that the survey include a statement such as: “The following factors would influence my decision” and leave a blank for responses.
Mr. Marrie asked if everyone agreed that it would be beneficial to mail the survey to all Village residents and the Committee unanimously agreed that it was a good idea.
Resident Paul Simmons stated that he thought the Village should rent the Civic Center on weekends now. Ms. Wolgamuth responded that the Civic Center is rented on weekends now, but by groups and organizations for meetings rather than by residents for parties. The Village has worked to keep the Civic Center available for civic uses and meetings and confine parties to the Community Room. Ms. Wolgamuth advised that the Civic Center houses the Village’s administrative offices and there is currently no separation between this area and the rest of the building.
Ms. Batcheller stated that she believes parties at the Civic Center create too much maintenance and wear and tear on the facility. She stated that lots of children will be at the parties and there is too much room to run.
Mrs. Bodnar asked if the Village requests a security deposit. Ms. Wolgamuth advised that rental is $100 with a refundable $150 security deposit. As long as there is no damage to the facility, the security deposit is returned.
Mrs. Bodnar asked if the Village provides security. Ms. Wolgamuth responded that the Village does not currently provide security at either the Community Room or the Civic Center. If the party is large enough or if alcohol is served, an off-duty police officer must be hired.
Mr. Marrie provided an update on Council matters, including:
- Improvements have been made to the pool this year. The pool opens on June 7.
- The Highland Road sidewalk will be completed this year to SOM Center Road.
- The Village is going out to bid for street striping.
- The Health Care Task Force, made up of Village employees, is working on putting together a Health Fair to encourage wellness and reduce costs.
- The Grove Open House is on June 22 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mr. Marrie suggests stopping by as The Grove Committee has been working hard and will host limited events this year.
- Cruise Night is June 8.
- Shred Day was a big success with two large trucks filled with paper.
- The Senior Information Open House is scheduled for June 28 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon.
- The July 4th celebration is scheduled for June 29.
- Aintree North is getting sidewalks. If trees affect sidewalks, the Village has a program to reimburse up to $125 per slab. Aintree North homeowners made a deal with a contractor to pay that amount per slab so the homeowners will pay nothing. This is a great example of what a homeowners association can do.
- The Police Department held its first concealed carry class at the firing range and the Village has received more letters and compliments on the program than ever before. Additional classes are being planned and include testing and certification.
- Movies for Seniors at the Civic Center are becoming increasingly popular.
Mrs. Bodnar asked if usage of the programs offered by the Community Partnership has increased. Ms. Wolgamuth advised that the last report was much better—approximately 41 seniors had taken advantage of available transportation, social workers, etc. Mrs. Bodnar asked if there has been much feedback on the Heritage Home program and Ms. Wolgamuth stated that she has received no feedback yet. Mrs. Jay asked if Heritage Home representatives will be at the Senior Information Open House and Ms. Wolgamuth advised that they would.
The Committee will be on summer break and meetings will resume in the fall, as follows:
Mon, Sept 23
Mon, Oct 28
Mon, Nov 25
Comments from Members
Mr. Jerome stated that he and Dave Hoehnen will be grilling hot dogs at The Grove Open House and hopes everyone will attend.
Mrs. Bodnar recognized Mary and Merv Singer for their efforts planning the Memorial Day Ceremony. Mrs. Singer thanked Mr. Marrie for being the Master of Ceremonies and stated that Mayor Rinker gave a wonderful speech. She reported that 3,120 flags were placed at Whitehaven Cemetery, 432 flags at Mt. Sinai and 570 flags at Union Cemetery. Many volunteers came to help and the work was done quickly. Mr. Marrie stated that without Mary and Merv Singer, the event would never happen. Mrs. Singer added that the 12-year-old soloist did a great job.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 p.m.
Diane Wolgamuth, Director of Administration