February 3, 2022 Board of Directors Meeting Minutes
APEX PARK AND RECREATION DISTRICT
13150 West 72nd Avenue – Arvada, Colorado 80005 – 303.424.2739
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
February 3, 2022
CALL TO ORDER
President Pyne called to order the February 3, 2022, meeting of the Board of Directors of Apex Park and Recreation District, held at 6:30 p.m. in the Apex Center Randall Room, 13150 W. 72nd Ave., Arvada, CO. Board members in attendance in person were Vicki Pyne, Ken Harrell, Liz Tomsula, and Rich Garrimone. Board member Stephanie Allen was in attendance via Accession online video call. District employees in attendance were Tara Torline – Acting Executive Director and Director of Human Resources, Rheana Rogers – Executive Administrator and Recording Secretary, Mark Baird – Director of District Services and Capital Improvements, Hillary Roemersberger – Director of Recreation Services, Jesse Badder – Director of Recreation Services, Katie Groke – Director of Community Services, Brent Anderson – Director of Recreation Services, Laina Doyle – Recreation Manager, Julie Hines – Recreation Manager, and Jeff Leniger – Director of Finance. There were no members of the public present.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
MOTION: Director Tomsula moved for approval of the agenda. Director Harrell seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF THE JANUARY 6, 2022, BOARD MEETING
MOTION: Director Tomsula moved for approval of the Minutes. Director Harrell seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
There was none.
1. New Employee Introductions
Corbin Kirchhevel, Aquatics Generalist, and Mackenzie Woodsmall, Recreation Coordinator – Youth Enrichment Programming, were introduced to the Board.
2. Bonvue Concept
Nick Jacobs, President of Diverge Homes, presented to the BOD regarding his Bonvue Ranch neighborhood development project. The district currently owns a small park parcel that is adjacent to this development property and Mr. Jacobs believes a roundabout/traffic circle would be the best traffic option for the new developments and to accommodate this plan he needs additional space so therefore is requesting the right to use some of the park land of Apex’s to build it (approximately 1/10th of an acre or ~4300 sq. ft.). He did indicate that there are options to build in a different location that would not require use of Apex land. He is proposing building a small gravel horse trail adjacent to the roundabout then dedicate some land in the development for creation of a park that they would build and maintain. Mark Baird, Director of District Services, provided some context of this space and other Apex-owned park spaces in the area and suggested installation of a paved pathway connecting an existing park to the proposed park space from the developer. There was no opposition or concerns voiced by any members of the board. President Pyne directed Mr. Baird to work with Mr. Jacobs and our legal counsel to determine the next steps for exploring deeding the requested parcel for the traffic circle as requested.
3. District Banking Options
Mr. Leniger provided some background to the board surrounding the need to reevaluate the accounts the district holds their investments with Colotrust. In January, some events occurred causing financial staff to lose faith in Colotrust’s ability to ensure security of the district’s accounts. For a period, unauthorized signers had access to transact with the district’s funds. District staff discovered the error and initiated investigations into the matter. No fraudulent transactions appear to have occurred; however, Mr. Leniger is recommending no longer using Colotrust for fund investing and to explore different long-term options. District legal counsel has been advised of the breach and is exploring any necessary steps from that perspective. Mr. Leniger presented some alternative options for the board to consider. His recommendation is to open an account with C-Safe and establishing a C-Safe cash portfolio. Further, if the interest rate environment improves, he is recommending adopting a policy revision in the future to allow investment in the C-Safe Co Core investment option, which includes corporate bonds as a portion of the portfolio (currently disallowed per policy). After discussion the board was comfortable with Mr. Leniger’s recommendation and will be directing legal counsel to send a letter to Colotrust.
MOTION: Director Harrell moved to direct Mr. Leniger to open a C-Safe account in preparation for a future motion to authorize the transfer of funds. Director Garrimone seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
4. Amend Election Resolution to Clarify DEO
MOTION: Director Tomsula moved to amend APRD2022-03 Resolution Calling For the 2022 Regular District Election and Appointing a Designated Election Official to clarify the Board of Directors designate Sarah Shepherd of Circuit Rider of Colorado as the Designated Election Official and Rheana Rogers as Deputy Designated Election Official for the conduct of the election on behalf of the district. Director Harrell seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
5. ALT Merit Increases
Ms. Torline presented to the board a challenge as the district attends to staff performance evaluations for 2021. During 2021, all Apex Leadership Team staff reported to Lauri Dannemiller so this staff is unable to receive the standard district employee performance evaluations to determine potential to receive merit increases to their pay. There are three categories used to rank staff performance to determine their potential merit increase up to 5%. Ms. Torline’s recommendation is to provide a 3% merit increase to all ALT staff members for equity purposes. All staff will still complete a self-evaluation form and goal setting for 2022.
MOTION: Director Garrimone moved to approve a 3% merit increase for the members of ALT for 2021. Director Tomsula seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
6. Upgrade District Services Maintenance Position
Ms. Torline reported on history of planned changes to job responsibility distributions for managing access control (keys and locks to district facilities) and Manager Plus from Technology Services to District Services. An employee departure from the district has required this change to occur sooner than planned, and a current District Services team member has shifted into the role, assuming these responsibilities. More than half of his time is spent on these new duties and Ms. Torline feels a new job description/title and associated pay range is appropriate. The net financial impact to the district for this upgrade was presented. Some part-time hours that were budgeted are being reduced to offset this cost.
MOTION: Director Garrimone moved to change the employee’s title and salary per Ms. Torline’s recommendations. Director Harrell seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
7. Meyers Pool Update
Ms. Roemersberger updated the board on a recent meeting with the other project stakeholders. The City has outlined the project as a 4 phase approach. Phase 1 involves the creation of a temporary parking lot. Phase 2 is supply ordering (this phase will likely begin early in anticipation of supply chain issues). Phase 3 is construction and phase 4 is demolition of the old facility to create the new parking area. The City has issued the RFQ for design contractors. In the second quarter of 2022 there will be a minimum of 3 public engagement opportunities for community input on design. The City council will need to then make final approvals. Apex will have 2 representatives on the selection committee as the operators to provide insight through the process. Design could take up to 12 months. Construction is proposed to begin in the second quarter of 2023. 16 months of construction would result in completion during the 4th quarter of 2024, however this is peak swim season for competitive teams so that timing may need to be adjusted to expedite this timeline so the high school training season is not impacted. Ms. Roemersberger will continue to provide updates to the board through this process. She is advocating for continued Apex aquatics team involvement at all steps to provide insight and expertise from the operations standpoint. President Pyne indicated her desire to ensure an Apex board member is included in the public engagement meetings.
8. Executive Director Next Steps
President Pyne drafted a timeline for the recruitment of a new Executive Director for discussion. Her hope is to have the process complete by May 2022 before a new board is seated after the May 3 election. She provided a draft job description for potential discussion.
The proposed timeline is as follows: 2/7-3/7 – Promotion process and application acceptance; 3/9-3/18 – Review of applications by candidate committee; 3/24 – Executive session for full board of directors interview panel (first interview); 3/25 – Publish finalist information; 3/31 – Second interview by candidate committee with decision rendered by 4/5; 4/7 – Selection voted in at regular board meeting, after discussion in executive session; 4/11 – Official offer extended and negotiated with candidate; 5/1 – Start date of new ED. The Board undertook discussion whether to hire a firm to conduct the search or to only post the vacancy per the district’s usual hiring channels. After speaking with City and Fire Department representatives on their recent hiring processes she is advocating not incurring the significant expense of a search firm, which would likely be in the $20-25k range. She has spoken to the district’s legal counsel and feels comfortable with this recommendation. Director Tomsula agreed that a firm is not necessary, and Director Garrimone agreed. Director Harrell stated he believes it is essential a new Executive Director is hired before seating of the new board, that he also believes that the preferred candidate needs to be local to the area and not from out of state, and that no firm should be hired for the search. Director Allen stated she is comfortable with the proposed hiring timeline but also stated her preference that all BOD members be involved in all steps of the search and hiring process. Ms. Torline did present data regarding the pros/cons of using a search firm and stated her hesitation with recruiting this position without a firm is the possibility it ends in a failed search resulting in an extension to the hiring timeline, but the board was comfortable with this possibility even though they don’t anticipate that will be the outcome. By board consensus it was determined that based on accelerated timelines and the desire to be mindful of the use of taxpayer dollars, no firm will be hired to oversee the search, but the board will keep the option open if their local search doesn’t yield viable candidates. The candidate committee will be made up of some board members and select community members.
Ms. Torline reminded the board that per the Colorado Equal Pay Act the district will be required to post the pay range for this job posting. Her recommended salary range based on data collection of nearby districts is $200-$250K. Director Harrell proposed $180-230k as the hiring range. Director Garrimone expressed concern that the pay range listing up to $230k may be too extensive and President Pyne agreed. Ms. Torline also recommended that from a Human Resources perspective and the current hiring climate, the larger range will attract more qualified candidates. Board members will review the proposed job description and provide President Pyne with any changes by end of weekend ahead of the planned 2/7 job posting date.
There was none.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR REPORT
Ms. Torline reported that a staff memorial for Lauri Dannemiller was held January 25. Family will do a gathering in spring, and the board will be update once details are available. She reported that the district has filled over 30 full-time jobs since August 2021. Pre COVID, the district typically would have filled less than 15 positions over a similar timeframe. There are still 10 open full-time positions. Pre COVID, full-time staff count was 95 and the district currently is 85 FTEs. She also shared the news the district received today that Jefferson County mask mandates are projected to end on February 18. President Pyne directed staff to review facilities for any COVID signage and plan for their removal.
BOARD MEMBER REPORTS/INPUT
President Pyne has been meeting with district directors and managers and has heard good feedback about the new employee onboarding process.
Director Harrell appreciated the staff memorial for Ms. Dannemiller.
Director Allen had nothing to report.
Director Tomsula had nothing to report.
Director Garrimone had nothing to report.
MOTION: Director Harrell moved that the meeting be adjourned. Director Garrimone seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.
President Pyne adjourned the meeting at 8:20 p.m.
Rheana Rogers, Recording Secretary
Liz Tomsula, Secretary/Treasurer