The design and budgeting for Bayview Community Resource Center have been treated very differently by the mayor’s office than the two community centers built on the westside, Legion Field and Woodland Heights, during Mayor Ashton Hayward’s first administration.
The Bayview center appears to have been given a blank check with its budget increasing from $6 million to $8.25 million to $9.6 million from February 2016 to May 2018. City CFO Barker has given two causes for the jump from $6 million to $8.25 million:
- The changes in amenities after discussions with community and architect (Jan. 2017), and
- The rising cost of construction (Aug 2017).
In 2011-12, when the African-American community was working on the design of the Woodland Heights and Legion centers, they weren’t given much leeway.
The architects and citizens were told they had to stay within the $3 million budget for each. Like Bayview, the community’s wish list was extensive. However, District 5, 6 and 7 citizens didn’t get everything they wanted in the centers. The budgets were maintained.
There was a $250,000 supplement budget for Legion Field, a little more than an 8 percent increase, but that center also was designed to house the Westside library.
|Center – Westside Library||$ 3,000,000||approved 4/7/11|
|Capital Equipment||$ 250,000||supplemental|
|Total Budget||$ 3,250,000|
|Design fee||$ 298,696|
|City engineering project mgmt||$ 67,000|
|Total Actual||$ 3,250,000|
|Budget||$ 3,000,000||approved 4/7/11|
|Design fee||$ 293,696|
|City engineering project mgmt||$ 68,500|
|Total Actual||$ 3,000,000|
Some of other factors that are different:
- Fund Availability The city didn’t have a lot of unallocated LOST funds in 2011-12. The council had only allocated $500,000 for each center, prior to Hayward taking office. The LOST Series IV funds ($87 million) kicked in January 2018. If Mayor Hayward gets council approval for the $9.6 million Bayview center, he will have obligated nearly 40 percent of the LOST Series IV before the next mayor takes office, according to LOST plan in the FY 2018 budget.
- Different Leadership Under City Administrator Eric Olson, the city took 27 months from when the council voted on the center’s $6 million budget in February 2016 to bring a contract to the council. Under City Administrator Bill Reynolds and Chief of Staff John Asmar, Woodland Heights contact was delivered in 18 months, Legion Field 19 months. The extended delay for Bayview cost the city money.
- Familiarity Bayview Park is in Mayor Hayward ‘s neighborhood. He drives by it every day. Woodland and Legion Field aren’t on his way to work.
Early this month, Emily Talen talked about social equity during a CivicCon session. She talked about where we live influences our access to parks, schools, libraries, grocery stores, dog parks and other amenities.
Talen said, “Ideally, these resources would be equally available to everyone, but in practice many poor neighborhoods are left to do without.”
The mayor has argued that Bayview Park is used by all of the citizen and county. How much? He has offered no objective measurement.
How many people will benefit from a 4000 sq. ft. boathouse at Bayview? 100? 200? 500?
Had Legion and Woodland Heights been built given an additional $1 million for construction, how many more people would those two centers have been able to serve? 100? 200? 500?
Bayview, Legion and Woodland are all neighborhood parks.
Where is the equity between a $3 million center and $9.6 million facility?