Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Food For Thought For The Planning Board UPDATED

In preparation for tonight's Planning Board meeting, a concerned resident found a previous discussion on artificial turf in the August 27, 2013 meeting minutes

Mr. Pittman asked about the artificial turf that is recommended form Wildcat and Middle fields.
Mr. McGill said he believes the majority of the commission supports an artificial surface. They looked at the pros and cons of artificial and natural surfaces, received advice from the sports advisory board and conducted several meetings hearing arguments both for and against turf, of turf on one field either Wildcat or Middle field.
Mr. Pittman is concerned about the expense and if the use of the fields warrants it. He said he goes by those fields and many times they are not in use.
Mr. McGill said the users of those fields have indicated that fields are often not in unusable condition. Every year it is a challenge for the recreation department to provide adequate field space for all of the different sports. Some sports organizations have had to lease fields in other communities because there were no fields available in Mt. Lebanon. Adding lighting to these fields could extend time frame that they would be in use.
Mr. Pittman said artificial turf does not alleviate the need for field space, it only protects the field after a weather event. He is concerned about the athletes’ safety with artificial surfaces.
Mr. Sabeh said the newer surfaces are designed to be safer than grass and absorb more impact, thereby protecting the athlete better.

With all due respect, Mr. Sabeh, you are misinformed. I have been posting links to documentation that says otherwise on Lebo Citizens. Here are some new ones which were sent to me.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Artificial Turf 

Are artificial turf fields carcinogenic?

Mr. Sabeh, in case you were wondering about lawsuits, grab a cup of coffee and get comfortable. This extensive list will keep you busy for some time.

http://www.synturf.org/lawsuits.html 


State of California Department of Justice Office of the Attorney General 

I understand that you base your decisions on the 2013 Comprehensive Plan. (Please allow extra time for link to open. It is a large document.)

Action 8: Promote public/private partnerships related to recreation planning and improvements to maximize recreation opportunities in a cost effective manner.
Mr. Sabeh, check out how a school district was stuck replacing six year old artificial turf after it failed prematurely. Beaverton School District to spend up to $850,000 to replace failing artificial turf fields 
Although the district signed a limited warranty with the installer, faulty record-keeping on the district's part complicated negotiations for a new field.
You may have heard of a similar incident occurring here in Mt. Lebanon, Mr. Sabeh. Talk with Mr. Feller about poor record keeping and warranties connected with the Public Safety Building.

Please think long and hard before you rubber stamp this project, Mr. Sabeh. Turfing fields is a life long commitment. Once the artificial turf is installed, there is no turning back without extensive soil remediation which takes years to recover. This turf will be replaced every eight years, costing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. Think about the lawsuits. Consider the safety of our children. Please.

Update April 22, 2014 10:13 AM I sent an email this morning to Keith McGill, asking to forward a link to this post to the Planning Board. Here is his response.

Good morning Elaine,

The agenda item on tonight's Planning Board meeting for the Wildcat/Middle Field project is an update for the Planning Board on the status of a project that is identified in the Comprehensive Plan.

The Board will not be taking an action or making a recommendation on this project as no action is required. The project is an improvement of an existing facility. As you are aware the Commission voted in favor of a motion to assign funds for this project in November of 2013 with a requirement that non-municipal funds be in place to allow the project to move forward.

The Planning Board takes Citizens comments at the end of the meeting for any non-action items.

As always, thank you for your interest in the community and I will look forward to seeing you at tonight's meeting.

Respectfully,

Keith


23 comments:

E. T. Gillen said...

Please read Municipal Planner Keith McGill's email to me this morning. I guess nothing can stop this plan to install toxic turf since the commissioners approved this on November 25, 2013. You remember, when Kristen lied about the ESB's position on artificial turf, when there was no public hearing for this action, no notification of the vote on any mtl media such as LeboALERT, Twitter, Facebook, lebomag.com, Linfante's blog, Brumfield's blog, or Franklin's blog?
Elaine

E. T. Gillen said...

There is a public meeting for this???

From: LeboALERT
To: EGillen476
Subject: LeboALERT: Public meeting about...
Date: Tue, Apr 22, 2014 10:18 am
This is an important notice from LeboALERT.


Public meeting about Mt. Lebanon's National Register District nomination,
Thurs., April 24, 6-8 pm, Commission Chamber: http://www.mtlebanon.org


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Anonymous said...

Nor has there been any real public disclosure that the $1,000,000 turfing is just one phase of an overall Wildcat/Middle Fields multi year multi phase project - 2013 installation of 35 paved parking spaces off Cedar at Wildcat at a cost of $117,400 - proposed addition of 58 more paved parking spaces in that lot in 2016 at a Gateway cost estimate of $299,000 - installation of Wildcat field lighting featured in CIP'S and the 2013 Comprehensive Plan, but not cost estimated or included in turf project. This is fast approaching an actual $1,500,000 boondoggle.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't be swayed by Mr. McGill's words.

He is only speaking for the majority of the Commission.

Reading those minutes shows this board was clearly misled. Maybe a similiar situation as the ESB?

Anonymous said...

The National Register District is probably an SAB initiative. They want beauty in their own neighborhoods but not on Cedar Boulevard.

Anonymous said...

Keith,
Thank you for reminding folks that this ship sailed back in November!!!
Please proceed accordingly....

Anonymous said...

Ketih McGill,

The Comprehensive Plan, on page 64, claims the achievement of Silver certification through meeting the requirements of the Pennsylvania Sustainable Community Essentials program. Mt. Lebanon earned recognition for, among other things, "Using an environmental sustainability board". There are many variables to consider with respect to the comprehensive plan that dispute the installation of artificial turf. One of them is not using or having followed the recommendation of the ESB.



Anonymous said...

seriesneatmuornedsagumpertpage 85 of the comprehensive plan states "This plan is a working document that will be reviewed every year to evaluate progress related to each goal and the status of the Action Plan."

Further, Objective 3 on page 93 is to "Promote sustainability and recycling throughout the community". Read items 3. Also, E.

If we want to pull the Comprehensive Plan card, there is more there to question the turf plan than support it.

Anonymous said...

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/prep-rally/won-t-believe-one-hour-rain-did-pittsburgh-121148615.html

can't wait for this headline in Mt. Lebo!

E. T. Gillen said...

What was that first word, 12:26 PM?
Elaine

E. T. Gillen said...

I want to thank all the people who attended tonight's Planning Board meeting. There wasn't one person there who was in favor of artificial turf. We all had our reasons why we were opposed to it, but all of us agreed that there was no outreach. One resident said that we get LeboALERTS about what movie will be shown at the swimming pool, but nothing about this.

Next meeting is the one on Thursday, April 24, sent to people within 200 feet of the fields. This "not for the general public" meeting starts at 6 PM at the concession stand building at the fields on Cedar. In case of inclement weather, the "not for the general public" meeting will be moved to the lobby of the ice rink.

Again, thank you everyone!!!
Elaine

E. T. Gillen said...

I am sitting in a restaurant on Washington Road proudly wearing my anti-artificial sports turf sticker. Stickers were passed out at the planning board meeting last night. More will be available at the "not for the general public meeting" tomorrow and at the Earth Day celebration on Saturday.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

Where will the stickers be available at Earth Day?

Anonymous said...

Elaine,

Thank you for recording the meeting last night. I thought a video recording would be produced and put up on the municipal website, but a recording was not made. It seems odd that the meeting is in the Commission Chamber where all of the technology is readily available for recording and it's not used.

-Charlotte Stephenson

Anonymous said...

Is there any truth to the rumor that the No artificial sports turf stickers are available online at the Lebostore and that a portion of the sales will be contributed to the non-public contributions to the artificial turf?

Hey its not that farfetched-- if the commissioners can come up with a scheme to use revenue from 'public' fence advertising signs as contributions to fulfill the 'non-public' share of the turf project why are the sale of the stickers so unbelievable?

Anonymous said...

Elaine you are going to love this! We had to stay late last night because our clinic is acquiring new equipment that is geared to treat children and adults suffering from head injuries especially concussions. Wonder why? Hear that Dave Brumfield? Better save your pennies because YOU have been made aware of the dangers!

Anonymous said...

Elaine at April 22, 11:10 AM - have you and other bloggers noticed that Mt. Lebanon has scheduled three public and not-so-public meetings on Thursday evening, tomorrow, over the same time period ? Turf meeting at concession stand or skating lobby, the National Register District nomination, and a "Newcomers Tax" meeting for those affected. I think there may also a Parking Facility Advisory Board meeting as well.

Is this all by accident or intentional design to minimize public attendance at each ?

It has become impossible to trust elected and appointed officials here any more. There is a complete lack of any credibility !

E. T. Gillen said...

Divide and conquer, I think, 3:40 PM.

2:58 PM, you're funny!!

Charlotte, I am in the process of sharing some information about that very topic in my next post. Things are so inconsistent!!!!!

1:45 PM, I am not sure. I just heard that they will be given out in the Main Park. Perhaps someone can clarify that for us.

Elaine

Anonymous said...

Are there any of members of the Washington or Beverly Road Business Association that can convince the members to display the No Artificial Sports Turf stickers on their doors?

The use of taxes that the businesses pay to finance the turf means less money for improvements to their areas and takes money out of their patrons' pockets!

Anonymous said...

This resident intends to boycott any MTL business that purchases a field advertising sign!

Anonymous said...

Are there yard signs yet? I'll put one up and I'm just down the street from Dave Brumfield.

E. T. Gillen said...

Not that I am aware of, 7:59 AM. This all takes money. Are you willing to order them?
Elaine

E. T. Gillen said...

It isn't about turf anymore. It is all about ice, at least for this fan. 2-year-old's intensity at Penguins game goes viral
Elaine