Friday, November 30, 2012

A Roanoke Park Foundation proposal surprise

UPDATE: Dec. 3 – The Roanoke Parks Foundation briefing was continued until another council meeting. City manager Chris Morrill when asked did not indicate that it had anything to do with eliminating the Mill Mountain Advisory Committee. There were no appointments made to the committee. The MMAC continues to wait for approval of the applicants. Dr. Nancy Dye should be appointed to the foundation.

PS: Later this evening I received a phone call asking me what the heck is council’s objective in dismantling the MMAC. They were also suspicious – “they take care of the mountain” she said.


At a briefing scheduled for Roanoke City Council Monday there is a proposal to form Roanoke Parks Foundation, Inc. on the agenda. This seems to be the wizard behind the curtain as city council has sought to eliminate or substantially curtail the Mill Mountain Advisory Committee. The agenda also shows a closed meeting to fill the MMAC spots …  we will see. All the public pressure may have made a difference.

Let me be clear I don’t know this for certain and have inquired to no one as of yet. But there seems to be an overlap in purpose. My assumption is that this foundation was part of the effort to do away with the MMAC as there was one too many hands in the park pot. I would also wager this is NOT council’s first look at a foundation and it will be NO surprise to them.

This suspiciously looks like it was floated by someone either on council or staff during a closed session or through emails and phone calls. This is what I’ve been smelling.

The foundation will support the Department of Parks and Recreation by raising private funds, obtaining grants and creating partnerships that supplement General Fund dollars to meet the community’s needs.

The foundation will raise monies for capital improvement projects throughout the City’s park system, receive and maintain funds, hold real property, and apply such funds or property as necessary.

Increase public support, awareness, understanding, interest, and utilization of the City’s parks and programs.

Preserve -Foster stewardship of the City’s natural and historical resources.

Support – Offer assistance, experience, knowledge, or advice to City staff.

The initial 5 member board of directors will be appointed by the Parks and Rec Advisory Board then self-appoint as needed.

The foundation will hold annual Membership Meeting and Cookouts

~Holiday Galas
~Neighborhood Block/Park Parties
~Arts and Crafts Shows
~Charitable Sports Tournaments

The foundation will assist the P & R Department with access to PLAY Youth Scholarship Fund

~Park Playground Improvements and Replacements
~Park Shelter Improvements and Replacements
~Recreation Center Renovations and Additions
~Installation of Park Signage and Other Park Amenities

It will go before the P & R Advisory Board in December followed by the creation of bylaws and articles of incorporation.

Mill Mountain Advisory Committee – what is it good for?

Big Bird, Mill Mountain and smaller government

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Commentary, Community, Politics, Roanoke City Politics

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