Below is a chronological listing of events (in reverse order) for TLL families to learn about the long-standing agreement with the City of Tigard and updates to the situation as they happened.
Knowing that we would be able to attend the June 18th City Council Working Session but that a Working Session meeting does not afford the public to make any comment or presentation, TLL/SSC decided to attend the following meetings which allow for public comment.
Monday, June 10, 2013
Parks & Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB)Eight members of TLL/SSC attended this meeting where we gave a brief history of the agreement, the recent events and the fact that City Council was going to be asked to render a decision on: "Should TLL/SSC be viewed as different than other organizations regarding Cook Park field use?" The PRAB members asked questions and agreed to make this topic an agenda item at their July meeting: Monday, July 8th, 7 p.m., Public Works Building, 8777 SW Burnham Road, Tigard.
Tuesday, June 11, 2013: City Council Business Meeting
Approximately 35-40 TLL/SSC members attended in support of this topic. Three people spoke on behalf of TLL/SSC (Kim Kelleher, TLL President, Kibwe Cuffie, Technical Director SSC, and Dave Nicoli architect of 1998 agreement) and council members were provided a packet of all of the documents included on this page. Below is the speech prepared by Kim Kelleher, as well as discussion points that were distributed to the council members:
Realizing that we would not have an opportunity to present to City Council at their working session meeting on June 18th, we sent a request to all TLL/SSC members asking them to join us at City Hall for the City Council Business Meeting on June 11th - here is the notice that went out:
TLL and Southside Soccer Need Your Support
Could you spare 20 minutes to be at City Hall this coming Tuesday evening at 7:30 p.m.?
Many years ago, Cook Park was home to a dairy. Today it contains the showcase fields for both Tigard Little League and Southside Soccer.
How did that happen?
It happened through an unique partnership between the City of Tigard and Tigard Little League/Southside Soccer where TLL/Southside agreed to pay almost $500,000 over 15 years to purchase the land to the left of the road that leads into Cook Park and develop soccer and baseball/softball fields, parking lots and concessions/bathroom buildings. Our financial outlay was balanced with the city giving TLL/Southside priority rights for the fields that they had helped to acquire/build.
Having spoken with individuals involved in the original 1998 agreement, the intent was for TLL/Southside to have access to these fields for the foreseeable future; unfortunately, with the payments schedule for our agreement coming to a close this October, the City of Tigard has notified us of their decision to terminate the agreement. They now plan to view us like any other organization wanting to rent fields.
We are asking members of TLL and Southside to come to a City Council meeting to show your support for our clubs and our desire to continue our partnership with the city:
This Tuesday, June 11th
13125 SW Hall Boulevard
You would only need to stay for 15-20 minutes but it would show City Council members how many members of the Tigard public are interested in the resolution of this situation. Add your name to the list if you can be there:
Respond to this email or contact Kim Kelleher.
Thank you very much for your support!!
In June, TLL/SSC received a letter of response from the City of Tigard, including:
The following is a quote from the letter:
"It is unfortunate that the agreement used terms like "ownership interest" and "equity position." Those terms, looked at in isolation, have created a belief that if the agreement terminates, TLL and SSC should receive their half interest in the value of the property. But the agreement does not work that way."
At this point, TLL/SSC realized that we have a very different interpretation of the 1998 Agreement than the city staff does.
In early May, TLL contacted city staff to find out if a decision on whether TLL/SSC would be considered different than other organizations due to our agreement and financial investment - we were told that city staff would be presenting the question to City Council at one of their May meetings. When we realized that City Council members would be hearing only from city staff, we asked if representatives from TLL/SSC could attend and present so that there would be a balance of perspective. City staff told us that they would check with the City Manager and see whether that would be possible.
When asked whether city staff felt that TLL/SSC should be viewed as different than other organizations, the response was that they felt we had been "faithful tenants".
An accounting of expenses on behalf of the city spent on Cook Park fields since 1998 (to understand annual maintenance costs)
Later in May, we finally received word that the wrong City Council meeting date had been given to us - city staff would be presenting on this topic at the June 18th City Council Working Session. It was explained that we were welcome to attend, but there would be no opportunity for us to speak/present.
In February, we had a 2nd meeting between the City of Tigard and TLL/SSC. By this time, members of TLL had read the 1998 agreement and come to believe that the two clubs have an equity position in the land that was purchased and developed. At the same time, city staff explained that they expected TLL/SSC to:
We expressed grave concern over these changes, particularly given the intent of the original agreement. We told city staff that we believed that we should be considered different than other organizations based on the intent of the 1998 agreement and the fact that we had paid more than $500,000 for the purchase and development of the land.
City staff explained that a decision like that had to be made by someone higher than the people in the room so we adjourned and waited for the city to contact us with the decision.
Realizing that the final payment in a 15 year payment schedule was to occur in October 2014, Tigard Little League contacted the City of Tigard this past October to find out what would happen once the final payment was made. A meeting between city staff and TLL/SSC board members occurred in October where the 3 groups acknowledged that there was a long-standing agreement but the city suggested that we wanted to move forward from it as it is long and contains things that are not being followed.
At the time, TLL/SSC thought that that would make sense (although no one had read the agreement) and we agreed to reconvene to discuss details.
In 2010, a third amendment was signed which:
The original 1998 agreement had touched on a concession building to be built, but it wasn't until 2003 that plans went forward with their construction. At this time,