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Glendale looking to partner with nonprofit

Posted 3/23/17

By Cecilia Chan

Independent Newsmedia

Glendale wants to partner with a nonprofit group in order to receive donations to pay for park-related programs and amenities for residents that are …

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Glendale looking to partner with nonprofit


By Cecilia Chan
Independent Newsmedia

Glendale wants to partner with a nonprofit group in order to receive donations to pay for park-related programs and amenities for residents that are currently not funded by the city.

"We think it’s an added tool that can be used," said Erick Strunk, Public Facilities, Recreation and Special Events director. "It’s time to pursue that."

Mr. Strunk in last week’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission meeting said the recommendation is to pursue a partnership with Glendale Civic Pride Ambassadors.

"This groups is warm to it, very open to partnering with us," he said, adding plans are to reach out to the group in the next month or so.

The volunteer group was initiated in 1994 by then-Mayor Elaine Scruggs to enhance the city’s economic, social and cultural vitality. The Ambassadors through its fundraising efforts has to date donated $300,000 back to the community, according to the group’s website.

This route allows for estate gifts for Sahuaro Ranch Park, fundraising opportunities for youth scholarships and donated materials and supplies for things such as youth sports leagues, Mr. Strunk said.

The nonprofit group would be paid a nominal administrative fee to handle donations for the Gifting for Glendale, a 501c3 the city established in fiscal year 2013-14 but nothing was done with it.

The proposal does not need a vote because it is included in the department’s Parks and Recreation master plan.

The master plan includes other revenue strategies, including the following:

• Permit fees for exclusive reservation for picnic shelters, sports fields and competition tournaments held in the city by other organizations

• Charging dog park fees

• Establish a maintenance endowment fund dedicated for the maintenance in a park or its facilities. The fund would get its revenue from a percentage of user fees from programs, events and rentals.

The plan also proposed volunteer sources such as a Adopt-a-Park program where neighborhood groups or businesses make a volunteer commitment to maintain a specific area of a park.

Also at the meeting, Chairman Manuel Padia resigned. The commission, which originally met the second Monday of each month, voted in 2016 to move it to the second Wednesday of each month. Due to staff oversight, the commission’s vote was never approved and the commission was requested to move its date back to the original meeting date, causing a conflict for Mr. Padia to attend th meetings. The vice chair will take over until a council appointment is made, according to Mr. Strunk.