Let’s Be Clear about Just What the Ashland Park’s Director Is Asking From the Ashland City Council
** Edited and republished 8/3/21
APRC aims for “Contracting Review Board” control.
APRC Director Michael Black emphasized at APRC’s 7/28/21 ZOOM meeting that the APRC was not going to ask for additional monies above what they presently are granted thru June, 2023 (per the City of Ashland’s BN 2021-2023 Budget , approved on 6/1/21). Rather, Director Black urged APRC Commissioners to ask the Ashland City Council on August 23, 2021, for two items that are unnecessary and disturbing.
- A “dedicated funding source” : 98% from the Food & Beverage Tax ( F&B)
- an ordinance to allow APRC to have “contracting review board” control as it relates to APRC.
First #1: “dedicated funding source”
Director Black repeatedly told the Commissioners that the APRC would be left in a vulnerable position for funding on July 1, 2022 unless a solution was found, such as securing the F&B source. No evidence for PARK’S dire straits was given, especially with the current budget in place. This is WRONG.
The APRC has funding from F&B (25%) and property tax per the BN 2021-2023 Budget through June 30, 2023. While the source of APRC’s funding may not be ideal ( per Black), APRC has secure funding for the foreseeable future.
Now #2: “Contracting Review Board”
This is the DISTURBING proposed action by Director Black because it counters the City Charter.
The Ashland Charter limits Parks’s funding responsibilities. [Article 8, Section 1; Article 11, Section 4; Article 19, Section 3]. Per Article 19a, F&B monies remain under the management of the City of Ashland. The “contacting review board “ is a tool for City Council oversight of all sectors and departments in the City. Every department is subject to this oversight which is required for all contracts exceeding $50,000. The Ashland City Council has the fiduciary responsibility to control and monitor the departments under the City’s Charter and that includes the APRC. APRC can use their funding according to City and Park’s goals but must present larger contracts to the City Council for approval. This keeps every department accountable to the sitting City Council which is responsible to the electorate. This request from APRC and Director Black is inappropriate and unwise. Ashland residents must be confident that the City Manager, Finance Director and City Council are vigilantly monitoring APRC to prevent APRC actions that WILL COST US MONEY.
This request MUST be denied.
Susan Hall RN