WARSAW — The Warsaw Parks & Recreation Department meeting held Tuesday, June 25, focused on proposed 2020 budgets.
The proposed 211 non-reverting recreation budget for 2020 shows a total of $18,350, a 17 percent increase from the 2019 budget.
Warsaw Parks Superintendent Larry Plummer provided board members with documents showing a breakdown of proposed programs and events for 2020.
Plummer said they would like to increase the operating supplies budget by $3,000 due to five additional programs being offered in 2020. Recreation Director Sheila Wieringa said those five programs include a gingerbread house workshop, a colorful ceramics program, a paint in the park jr. event, a superhero training camp and the Safe Sitter course.
“This is very minimal, what we’re taking out of what we have in reserves,” said Plummer. “I feel comfortable with the increases and the increased programing.”
The proposed 2020 non-reverting 204 operating budget shows a total of $2,772,500, a 7 percent increase over the 2019 budget.
“We were advised by HR and the mayor’s office to put a 3 percent increase in there and we also have 27 pays this year instead of 26 pays,” said Plummer. “I guess it’s due to leap year. It’s hard to believe that one day makes that happen, but that’s what they’re telling me.”
Plummer said the biggest increase in this budget is $135,000 for construction drawings for the pavilion.
“We’ve got a couple of the steps done, but the next step is to do construction drawings for the office and remodel. Once the construction drawings are done and funds are secured to do the project, we can bid it out right away,” said Plummer.
“We’ve tried to hold the line ever since we’ve been here,” said Plummer, “And we’re tying to do that but yet accomplish some things.”
Additional reasons for the increased budget include a 15 percent health insurance increase and $20,000 for demolition of the gas station located on Detroit Street near the Central Park entrance. Both budgets were approved as presented.
The lifeguard situation has not improved, said Wieringa. They are currently operating with four lifeguards.
“Right now we’re in the middle of swim lessons, which kind of throws a wrench in things because it takes two of them to do swim lessons, but then the other two are trying to guard so they’re doing the best they can,” said Wieringa.
“I think they’re doing an incredible job, the four of them,” said Plummer. “I’ve been down there several times and they’re doing what they can and when they’re not there, on days they’re not there — I just made this comment to Shaun (Gardner) today, it seems like everybody is being respectful at the beach and kind of watching out for each other so it’s going really well for the circumstances we’re under. I have’t seen any problems.”
Plummer said he was asked recently why the Warsaw Parks Department does not use rubber mulch under their park playgrounds.
“One reason is that sometimes you get metal shavings from the tires that have steel belts in them,” Plummer explained. He said the material is dark, which absorbs more heat, and is dirty.
“We prefer the wood fiber that’s in there,” said Plummer.
- Maintenance Director Shaun Gardner gave a monthly maintenance report.
- The next regular meeting will be held at 5:15 p.m. Tuesday, July 16.