WARSAW — Plans for a new lightning detection system were revealed at the monthly Warsaw Parks & Recreation meeting Tuesday, June 12.
“I’m proud to announce that we’ve received a grant in the amount of $19,992 from the Kosciusko County Community Foundation for a lightning detection system,” Parks Superintendent Larry Plummer informed board members.
According to Plummer, the iStrike Lightning Detection System will be installed at Center Lake, Pike Lake, Glover Pavilion and the campground area. Plummer described iStrike as a cellular-based system that can be customized to trigger an alarm and strobe light when lightning strikes in a predetermined mileage radius.
“It’s an audible alarm as well as a visual alarm with a red strobe light,” Plummer explained. “So when lifeguards aren’t on duty or people are having events, this will alert them that lightning is in the area.”
The 2019 budgets were discussed at last night’s meeting. The total proposed 2019 budget 204 is $2,591,910 and shows an increase of 9.5 percent over the 2018 proposed budget.
“This is our park operating budget. The increase reflects an increase in personal services, cost related to the city server and two special projects,” said Plummer, adding that he was instructed to put a 4 percent increase in the 2019 budget.
The two special projects include a new amphitheater at Lucerne Park and a sledding hill parking lot at Kelly Park.
“Some of the neighbors have had some concerns about parking on the streets while people are sledding at Kelly Park, so we are proposing to go ahead and put the stone base in there with the storm drains,” Plummer said. “We won’t be doing the asphalt or the curbs at this time.”
“The other project is the condition of our amphitheater. It’s really in bad shape,” Plummer stated. “It was built in the early 80s with telephone poles. We pieced it together enough to get through this year, but I’m not sure we’ll get another year out of it.”
Plummer told board members they are looking into building an amphitheater using pavers and blocks, similar to Central Park. “We’ve met with a couple of construction companies. It’s something that really needs done,” said Plummer. “That’s a crucial piece in our budget that we need to try to get accomplished for 2019. Without putting all the fancy lights and decorations on the stage, it’s about a $150,000 project.”
“We’ve secured it some, but it’s to the point where in one more year i’m not sure we can keep it open without redoing it,” Plummer told board members. “The trouble you run into with trying to redo it is you’re not bringing it up to ADA standards. So it’s either piece it and hope it holds on or you take it down and build something that’s ADA acceptable.”
Plummer explained that both projects are in the five year plan. “We’ve held the line on our budget since 2012, so I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask to do a couple of special projects like this in our budget.”
Plummer then outlined machinery and equipment costs. “One piece of equipment we’ve held off on and I’m not sure we can hold off any longer is the leaf vac,” Plummer stated. “We purchased ours used in 1990. The cemetery had the same kind about five years ago and we stole all the pieces off that to use on ours, but it’s one of those things where you just hope it holds together.”
Plummer proposed purchasing a leaf vac similar to the type that both the cemetery and the street department have so that the parts are interchangeable.
The proposed 2019 non-reverting budget 211 shows a proposed total of $15,650 and a 0 percent increase from the 2018 proposed budget.
“This budget is the same as last year and consists of operating supplies for recreation events – printing, advertising, crafts, art supplies and entertainment,” Plummer said.
The proposed 2019 non-reverting capital fund 403 shows a total of $30,500.
“These are funds from the Fireman’s Building and Nye Youth Cabin rental,” said Plummer. The budget includes $2,000 for supplies, including LED interior light replacement at the Fireman’s Building and Nye Youth Cabin; $25,000 for contracted work for improvements at the Fireman’s Building and Nye Youth Cabin and replacement of AC and furnace units at the Fireman’s Building and Nye Youth Cabin; and $3,500 for contracted work to paint the floor at Nye Youth Cabin. Plummer said the furnace and AC units at those buildings are 17 and 18 years old and need to be replaced.
Recreation Director Sheila Wieringa gave a monthly recreation report. According to Wieringa, swim lessons at Pike Lake are full for the year. She currently has seven lifeguards hired to monitor the beaches this summer. Applications are still being accepted for lifeguard positions.
- Maintenance Director Shaun Gardner gave a monthly maintenance report.
- The next regular meeting will be held at 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday, July 17.