Mountain House to spend $20,000 for park repair, improvement
by Denise Ellen Rizzo
Oct 11, 2013 | 3185 views | 5 5 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The graphic illustrates the location of the Central Community and Creek parks in Mountain House.
The graphic illustrates the location of the Central Community and Creek parks in Mountain House.
MOUNTAIN HOUSE — The Mountain House Community Services District Board of Directors has approved more than $20,000 for repairs and improvements at the Central Community and Creek parks.

The board approved a group of expenditures totaling $23,400 by a 4-1 vote at the regular meeting Wednesday, Oct. 9. Director Steven Gutierrez voted in opposition.

After the meeting, Gutierrez said he voted against spending the money because it was being requested outside the board’s normal budget cycle.

Operations and Maintenance Director Harpal Singh told the directors during their monthly meeting that improvements and repairs were needed to fix normal wear and tear and clean up vandalism at the two parks.

The items approved for funding were: staining the Central Community Park fountain for $10,000; renovating the turf around the fountain for $3,000; installing a hot-water tank for the park restrooms for $8,000; and adding baby-changing tables in the men’s room at both parks for $2,400.

General Manager Janice McClintock informed the board that two of the items — the hot-water tank and the baby-changing tables — were ordered by the San Joaquin County Health Department.

Director Celeste Farron said the repainting of the fountain was “long overdue.” She said the park was completed six years ago and the fountain had probably needed repainting for four or five years.

McClintock reminded the board that any work on the park fountain had to be performed during the winter while the fountain was shut off.

Gutierrez asked if any of the expenditure requests were part of the $641,000 budget slated for community parks in 2013-14 fiscal year, and Singh told him no.

Singh said the only one of the items that was in the parks budget was $6,000 to install a drainage bowl in Central Community Park. He said all the other requests were new.

During the meeting, Singh also asked the board to spend $7,500 to move the drinking fountain at Central Community Park to the other side of the park and $10,000 to rubberize the playground surface.

Director Andy Su suggested that the board consider removing the park’s sandbox instead of moving the fountain. He said children wash off sand in the fountain, causing damage to it, and suggested that it would be more fiscally sound to take out the sandbox.

Before the board could vote on the sandbox matter, Su suggested placing the issue on the agenda for a future board meeting to allow residents to comment.

The board tabled both additional funding requests until the Nov. 13 meeting.

• Contact Denise Ellen Rizzo at 830-4225 or

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October 15, 2013
Before complaining... search for facts...

A note from our GM:

As an FYI the amounts authorized by the Board of Directors for park repairs are NOT TO EXCEED numbers. If the work can be done for less it will be done for less. Staff doesn't waste time getting firm quotes until it is known if the Board wants the work done and has authorized enough money to complete the work. That said, government agencies are subjected to regulations (both state and federal) that commercial properties are not subject to follow. For example, to change a swing requires that we use a playground certified specialist. So instead of spending $25 in labor to change a swing it costs a few hundred to get a certified playground technician. Similar regulations exist for baby changing stations - although the stations cost less than $250 each - it's the installation, inspections, and certifications that cost the money. Please be sure that MHCSD staff doesn't like these regulations, but we must comply with them and that does increase costs. Just so you know, these regulations are generally initiated because someone sued a government over something.
October 11, 2013
Those prices are high by any standard. We could put that money to use putting in some bathrooms at other parks instead. Government shutdown is coming for Mountain House if we approve spending like that!
October 11, 2013
$8,000 for a hot water heater installation.

Home Depot has a tank less one for less than $650...that sure leaves a crock pot full of money for installation...

But what the hell, home prices are up, so why not go back to spend, spend, spend like the pre-crash days.

October 11, 2013
$2,400 to install a baby changing station?

Were these sent out for bids?
October 11, 2013
Bet that includes purchasin em too. An when ya consider all th safety an health regulations that have ta be met in thair entirety, that's probably not a bad price.

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