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Park Board approves building of shelter houses

The Richmond Park Board approved $38,500 for the construction of shelter houses that include concession stands and bathrooms on Monday night.
The board reviewed a bid by Royce Duffett. His bid for two houses was $50,540. Duffett was the only bid on the projects, according to the board.
The board discussed taking stainless steel out of the project, reducing the bid price by about $6,000, according to the estimates of Park Superintendent Terry Dickey.
They also voted to go back and negotiate a lower price for the construction, and approved an amount of $38,500 to spend.
Dickey brought an idea to the board after speaking with Recreation Director Hailey Morrissey and some parents. The board approved Dickey’s idea and spent $4,000 for handicapped-accessible swing sets. Last month, Dickey presented an idea for a baseball field and trail dragging equipment that the board approved.
“In my opinion of what we ought to do is, we built the bark park for the dog people. We built the baseball fields for the baseball people. We’ve built the tennis courts for the tennis people,” Dickey said. “If we do this, at least we’ll be on the right track.”
Some of $10,000 budgeted for tree care this year was diverted to the cost of the swing sets. The board decided to not to pursue tree care this fiscal year.
At their March meeting, City Administrator Rick Childers told the board they were spending a lot of money without developing a strategic plan. He told the board they promised voters a plan when they campaigned for the tax last April. Childers’ comments came after the board spent more than $50,000 last month. The board was in discussion about spending more when Childers stopped them
On Monday night the board approved more than $46,000 of additional spending.
After Childers’ comments, the board decided they would create their own plan despite budgeting $50,000 to develop one. The board decided to conduct two workshops last month for its development. Board member Glen Martin was commissioned to author and compile the plan. Martin was not present at the board’s meeting Monday night, but told board members he would have one ready at May’s meeting.
The board-approved minutes of the March meeting left out the 25-minute discussion with Childers about spending and plan creation. The only record of the discussion is the March 4 edition of The Daily News.

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