Nov. 13, 2018 Policy Sub Meeting


Quincy School Committee
Policy Subcommittee

Mr. Paul Bregoli, Chair
Mr. Anthony Andronico & Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Subcommittee Members

Tuesday, November 13, 2018, 6:30 pm
Coddington Building

  1. Resolution on Veterans Memorial Stadium and Associated Revision to Policy Book Section 11.6 Community Use of School Facilities - Mayor Koch


Quincy School Committee
Policy Subcommittee Meeting - November 13, 2018

A meeting of the Policy Subcommittee was held on Tuesday, November 13, 2018 at 6:30 pm in the Coddington Building. Present were Mayor Thomas Koch, Mr. Anthony Andronico, Mr. Doug Gutro, and Mr. Paul Bregoli, Chair. Also attending were Superintendent Richard DeCristofaro, Deputy Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

Mayor Koch reviewed that when Veterans Memorial Stadium was built under a Works Progress Administration grant in the late 1930s, the intent was for the School Department to be able to charge admission to events at the Stadium and the funds received would support educational programming. School Committee approved rentals of school properties, including the Stadium, into the early 1990s. Under the Education Reform Act, School Committee responsibilities were adjusted and the Parks Department assumed responsibility for scheduling activity at the stadium, along with routine maintenance and improvements. Mayor Koch noted that there is no educational purpose to Veterans Memorial Stadium and he would like to see it designated as parkland and protected from potential future development.

Mr. Bregoli sits on the Park & Recreation Board, the long-standing policy of the Board has been to prioritize the scheduling of Quincy Public Schools athletics, followed by Quincy youth athletics, before requests from local colleges or organizations are entertained. Mayor Koch said that admission could still be charged for school events and the funds retained by the Quincy Public Schools.

Mr. Gutro noted that he does not have an issue with the concept of the transfer of rights, but requested additional information about the original land transfer. Mayor Koch said that at the request of the City of Quincy, the Legislature enabled the School Committee to take ownership of what was previously used as parkland to build the stadium. Similarly, when Victory Park was converted to be the site for the Clifford Marshall Elementary School, School Committee, City Council, and the Legislature voted on the transfer of the land from the City of Quincy to the School Committee.

Mr. Gutro asked how the Stadium is zoned, Mayor Koch said it is designated as open space.

Mr. Bregoli said that at each monthly meeting, the Park & Recreation Board receives a list of requests for usage of fields, including the Stadium and approves whether fees are charged or waived. This process ensures that the priority of Quincy Public Schools usage is kept.

Mr. Gutro asked if there have been any School Committee or City Council votes on the stadium since the land was taken by School Committee. Ms. Owens researched the School Committee notes and there is no prior vote on this topic from 1990 to the present day.

Mr. Gutro asked what the legally appropriate action be to amend the Acts of 1936. Mayor Koch said the Act gave School Committee control of the land, so the School Committee vote is to cede control to the City of Quincy, similar to when School Committee returned the buildings used for Quincy High School and Central Middle School back to the City when the new facilities were built.

Mr. Bregoli asked what are the benefits of the transfer from School Committee to the City of Quincy. Mayor Koch said that any improvements needed at the Stadium would come from Public Buildings or Park Department funds and that clear City ownership would allow the Park Department or Public Buildings to apply for grants to fund capital improvements.

Mr. Gutro requested an opinion from City Solicitor Timmins that there is no further requirement for Legislative or City Council action and also requested a copy of the written Parks Department scheduling policies.

Dr. DeCristofaro will follow up with City Solicitor Timmins.

Mr. Bregoli requested another Policy Subcommittee for further discussion of this topic. The meeting is tentatively scheduled for November 28 at 6:45 pm following the Special Education Subcommittee meeting.

Mr. Andronico made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 7:00 pm. Mr. Bregoli seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.