Rancho Palos Verdes City Council
   

MARCH 21, 2006 FACILITY RENTALS AT FOUNDERS PARK MARCH 21, 2006 FACILITY RENTALS AT FOUNDERS PARK
MARCH 21, 2006 FACILITY RENTALS AT FOUNDERS PARK



TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF RECREATION AND PARKS

DATE: MARCH 21, 2006

SUBJECT: FACILITY RENTALS AT FOUNDERS PARK

Staff Coordinator: Matt Waters, Senior Administrative Analyst

RECOMMENDATION

Provide direction to staff on options in Trump National Golf Club’s (Trump National) proposed management plan for Founders Park.

Option 1: Maintain Founders Park as a passive park with no regular rentals.

Option 2: Trump National to manage Founders Park rentals, limited to one event per day, with the City receiving $420 for each resident rental and $750 for each non-resident rental. Approve an agreement with Trump National to manage rentals at Founders Park.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Option 1: Trump National has submitted a management proposal with two recommendations regarding Founders Park. The first option, which Trump National names as its preferred option, suggests that Founders Park be a passive park, not available for events. This approach would be consistent with other City passive park sites such as Eastview and Del Cerro.

Option 2: Trump National’s second option states that if a portion of Founders Park is available for rentals, it would like to function as the primary site manager, coordinating the rental process. If the City Council selects option 2, staff supports Trump National’s proposal for the following reasons. Trump National has the staff and resources on site to coordinate rentals, address rental inquiries, and assist prospective renters with event planning. If the City opted to manage Founders Park rentals, additional City staff and start-up resources would be necessary.

The City would receive $420 for each resident rental and $750 for each non-resident rental. Trump National would receive fees covering administrative and security costs in addition to rental fees for P.A. systems, chairs, and event coordinator services provided by Trump National. Its proposed plan addresses rental pricing, policies, and procedures as well as limitations on the size, scope, and frequency of events that would protect public access and the park’s open space character.

BACKGROUND

In accordance with the Final Conceptual Public Amenities Plan for the Ocean Trails Project approved by the City Council on October 15, 1996 and revised in 2000, Trump National developed a 5.5-acre parcel adjacent to the Trump National Clubhouse. The City Council named the park “Founders Park” in honor of the City’s founders who led the effort to incorporate the City of Rancho Palos Verdes more than 30 years ago. The grant deed for the park was formally accepted by the City on January 17, 2006.

Trump National has expressed an interest in managing rentals of the upper portion of Founders Park. Staff met with Trump National staff to discuss guidelines for shared management of the public park areas at Trump National and to discuss issues of concern regarding management of Founders Park, including fee structure, coordination of events, and rental procedures. Trump National has the event staff and resources on site to coordinate and manage rentals. City park rentals are currently limited to staffed parks such as Hesse Park, Ryan Park, Ladera Linda Community Center, and Point Vicente Interpretive Center when it reopens. An additional City staff person would be necessary to effectively monitor and coordinate rentals at Founders Park. City staff and Trump National representatives also discussed the importance of protecting public access to the park and ensuring that the policies and guidelines regulating other City-owned parks would be uniformly applied to the Founders Park site.

The terms of Trump National’s Coastal Permit allows for the closure of Founders Park up to six times a year for special functions, e.g. a golf tournament or City special event. The six closures are subject to City authorization, public access to the bluff-top corridor needs to be maintained, bluff top trails and the bluff edge of Founders Park need to remain open to the public, and a minimum of 50 free public parking spaces need to be kept available.

Current Rental Policies at City-Owned Facilities
The City operates and maintains five active park sites which are staffed by Recreation and Parks Department personnel. Public organizations, private parties, youth athletic leagues and class instructors utilize the facilities and fields at the City’s active park sites where staff have oversight and can monitor rental activities. Residents and local non-profit groups receive a discounted rate on rentals. Limiting the nature and size of facility uses at park sites, particularly in outdoor areas of the parks, ensures public access, allows for casual drop-in park use, and serves to maintain a natural open feel.

Facility rentals occur primarily at Hesse Park, Ryan Park, Ladera Linda, and at Point Vicente Interpretive Center when it reopens. Typical indoor rentals include such activities as private parties, exercise classes, art and music lessons, senior bridge, and community-related meetings. The outdoor fields are regularly used by youth sports camps, classes and athletic leagues.

The City also co-sponsors public events at its park sites for groups such as Las Candalistas, Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy, Coast Walk, and
Shakespeare by the Sea. Following its re-opening, the grounds and terrace adjacent to the Point Vicente Interpretive Center will be available for rental events and ceremonies, and the Interpretive Center’s multipurpose room will be available for weddings, receptions and other functions. Unstaffed parks such as Del Cerro and Eastview are not made available for rent in order to keep them open to the public for informal, drop-in use. Current rental fees and a schedule for future fee increases were established by the Council after an extensive fee study was completed in 2005.

DISCUSSION

Passive Park Option
Trump National’s preference, as stated in their proposal, is for Founders Park to be a passive site available only for casual, unscheduled uses such as picnics, family outings, and hiking. This policy would be consistent with current policy at the City’s other passive, unstaffed parks such as Del Cerro, Vanderlip, and Eastview Parks. Park patrons would have year-round access to the park, the public parking lot, and nearby trails. No scheduled events would take place at the park other than the six allowable closures per year, subject to the City’s approval.

Trump National’s proposal lists a number of reasons in favor of restricting rentals at Founders Park. It would “ensure the serenity of the location, maintain the integrity of the game of golf, and provide a composed location for customers and residents using public walking trails and park facilities.” Trump National’s proposal further states that ceremonies and other events at Founders Park could be problematic because a) outside rental services using walkways to deliver supplies could prove disruptive to the public; b) the public parking lot could become overcrowded; and c) noise from events at Founders Park would impact the quiet atmosphere necessary for golf.

Residents or non-residents looking to have a wedding ceremony or other outside event at a Rancho Palos Verdes Park will have an attractive alternative available when Point Vicente Interpretive Center re-opens this Summer. Staff anticipates that PVIC will be an extremely busy site for weddings, receptions, and other events. Numerous phone requests for rental information have come in as word of PVIC’s impending opening has spread. The lawn area of PVIC will be available for ceremonies and events at a rate of $420/per three-hour block for residents and $750/per three-hour block for non-residents, which is the same amount the City would receive from outside rentals at Founders Park if Trump National’s proposal to manage events at that site is approved. Trump National’s proposal also lists a number of coastal sites popular for weddings and other ceremonies, including La Venta Inn, Wayfarers Chapel and Trump National, itself.

Founders Park could also be available as a location for film shoots. Many of Rancho Palos Verdes’ parks are occasionally used as backdrops for student productions, commercials, and television and feature film productions. Film permit requests would be processed through the City Manager’s office and coordinated with Trump National staff, following established guidelines.

Founders Park: Passive Use & Managed Rental Options

 

EventsPer Day

Event Hours

Per Day

Revenue

# of Annual

Park Closures Allowed

Primary Park

Use

Permitted

Uses

Impact on City Staff &

Resources

Passive

Option

0

0

None

6

Hiking, Picnics, Casual Drop-In Use

Film

Shoots

None

Managed

Rental

Option

1

3

Estimated $20,000 per Year

6

Hiking, Picnics, Casual Drop-In Use

Cermonies, short events & Film Shoots

Minimal


RENTAL OPTION
Currently, only the City’s active parks are available for rent, because staff is available to schedule and facilitate park rentals at those locations. Due to aesthetics and geologic considerations, no on-site staff building was planned for Founders Park. In the absence of a City-owned building, amenities, and City staff, Trump National is better equipped to coordinate park rentals, answer questions of prospective renters, provide tours of the site, assist would-be renters in planning their events, and avoid conflicts with other events. In order for the City to effectively manage rentals at Founders Park, an additional City staff person would need to be hired.

The proposed management plan presented by Trump National outlines event pricing and policies for rentals of the upper portion of Founders Park. The proposed fee structure includes the City’s portion of rental fees that mirror outdoor rental rates at the soon-to-be-reopened Point Vicente Interpretive Center. For a three-hour rental period, RPV resident renters would pay a discounted fee of $585, of which the City would receive $420. For the same three-hour rental, non-residents would pay a total of $915, of which the City would receive $750. The remaining fees would be collected by Trump National, for their administrative and security costs.

Trump National would send a payment check, copies of rental contracts, and evidence of renters’ insurance to the City on a monthly basis, and make records available for review by the City’s auditors. The proposed contract (see attached) is for an initial term of three years. The City may cancel the agreement without penalty upon ninety days written notice to Trump National. Exact revenue can only be estimated at this time. 30-
40 events a year, calculated at $585 per event (the average of resident and non- resident rates) would generate approximately $20,000 a year.

Renting parties could also purchase optional packages from Trump National that
include chair rental, the services of an audio technician, and a ceremony coordinator, or

rent those items and services on an a la carte basis. Beyond the City’s portion of the Founders Park rental fee, the City would not receive any money for larger packages or additional amenities rented from Trump National. Renting park patrons would also have the option to bring in their own decorations, chairs, tables, and other amenities. Rentals would be limited to a maximum of 300 guests per event.

Trump National event staff would act as the primary site coordinator of Founders Park and guide patrons through the rental process. Their event coordination and site management would minimize City staff costs for security, upkeep, and maintenance. To ensure Trump National’s compliance with the proposed management plan and to disseminate park rental information, contact information for the City will be posted on Trump National’s website and included in their event package literature. City staff would work closely with Trump National staff to resolve any concerns or complaints regarding park rentals. Information about Founders Park rental procedures and policies would also be posted on the City’s website and available in hard copy at City Hall and other park sites.

Limitations on Founders Park Rentals
Staff has worked with Trump National representatives on limiting the size, scope, and frequency of Founders Park rentals outlined in their proposal in order to protect public access, minimize the impact of rentals on other park patrons, and preserve the character of the park.

Size: Number of guests limited to 300.

Area: Rentals would be restricted to the eastern half of the large grass oval directly behind the Trump National clubhouse. This half contains the existing gazebo.

Frequency: Number of events would be limited to one event per day with a total time limit of three hours. The three hour limitation includes time needed for setup and cleanup.

Scope: Rentals would be limited to events that fit within the area and time limitations. The intent is to have low-impact events at the site. Toward that end, moon bounces, carnival rides, amplified sound, tents, petting zoos, and canopies will not be permitted.

CONCLUSION

Staff requests direction from Council on the two different options in Trump National’s proposed management plan for Founders Park.

FISCAL IMPACT

Passive Founders Park Option: There would be no significant additional expense to the City and no anticipated revenue.

Managed Rental Option: There would be minimal additional staff expense. The City would receive $420 per resident rental and $750 per non-resident rental. Total annual revenue from rentals estimated at approximately $20,000 per year.

Respectfully submitted:

Ron Rosenfeld
Director of Recreation and Parks

Reviewed:

Les Evans
City Manager

Attachments
Agreement for Management of Rentals at Founders Park
Trump National Proposal for Management of Rentals at Founders Park
Agreement to Comply With California Labor Law Requirements