|Commission recommends application, petition process|
Staff Photo by Stacey Hairston:
The recreation advisory commission asked the board of supervisors to consider naming field 2 at Waid Park in honor of the late Randy Taylor, a longtime supporter of recreation baseball.
Monday, August 26, 2013
By CHARLES BOOTHE - Staff Writer
Franklin County is near finalizing a procedure for naming parks and recreation facilities in honor of individuals.
The issue surfaced earlier this year when a proposal came before the board of supervisors to name a baseball field after a deceased supporter.
Rick Arrington, a board member of the department of recreation's advisory commission, asked the board to consider naming field number 2 at Waid Park in honor of the late Randy Taylor, a longtime supporter of recreation baseball.
The board took no action at that time but told staff to examine how other jurisdictions handle such requests.
In May, the board asked that the recreation advisory commission develop a recommendation regarding a procedure.
Kay Saleeby, chair of the commission, presented that recommendation at Tuesday's board meeting.
Saleeby said the process includes completing an application (including a narrative of why the deceased deserves the honor), gathering signatures on a petition (100 from each of the county's voting districts), obtaining approval from the commission and requesting final approval from the board.
Criteria for naming parks and recreation rooms, parks, buildings, structures or spaces (like ball fields) include two separate categories, she said.
One category is for individuals who demonstrated a history of dedication, volunteerism and service to residents of the county.
The other category is for individuals who made significant monetary donations.
Significant is detailed as providing the greater of $25,000 or 60 percent of the total construction cost of a new park, building facility, structure or space.
It could also apply to a donor who provides a minimum of 80 percent of the funds required to renovate or expand an existing parks and recreation facility or space.
Saleeby made it clear that if an application clears all the hurdles, the final decision will still rest with the board.
Boone District Supervisor Ronnie Thompson said the signature requirements seemed "a little extreme" and and wondered if 100 total would be enough.
But Saleeby said commission members wanted to make sure the person had contributed enough to be well known throughout the county and that the process should require some effort.
Gills Creek Supervisor Bob Camicia asked that the procedures specify that anyone who signs the petition must be at least 18 years old.
Rocky Mount Supervisor Charles Wagner said the only concern he has relates to honoring someone who made a monetary donation.
"That's just buying a name on something," he said, adding that money alone should not be a deciding factor.
But Camicia said it's a "common practice" to name things after someone who makes a significant monetary donation and that the option should not be excluded.
The board took no action after the presentation and will consider the recommendation by the commission.