Northport-East Northport school board member Regina Pisacani has spearheaded a new committee that would advise the board on the conditions and the potential needs of the district’s fields and the athletic facilities.
The board approved creating an Athletic Facility Advisory Committee at its Monday night meeting. Pisacani said she’s currently working on attracting candidates for the positions by putting ads in the paper and reaching out to community members. The application process is underway and the due date to apply is April 30.
This committee will focus on inspection and evaluation of the present state of athletic facilities and grounds and rehabilitation versus replacing fields, equipment and facilities. It is charged with reviewing, analyzing and summarizing the state of the district’s athletic facilities in a written report to the school board and creating a list in order of safety and importance of recommended repairs and/or replacements.
Other tasks of the group include determining the costs of the recommended repairs and analyzing outside funding opportunities to help pay for upgrades.
The committee must present a five-year plan to identify priorities for the board by Dec. 14, 2015. It must also prepare a presentation for the 2016 budget meeting.
Membership will total at least 13 people, with at least six residents appointed by the school board; two parents appointed by the president of the PTA Council; one teacher appointed by the president of the United Teachers of Northport union; two support staff members selected by their peers; one school board member appointed by the board’s president; and one administrator appointed by the superintendent. Also, the superintendent of building and grounds as well as the athletic director would be present at each of the meetings as requested.
The committee would expire on June 30, 2016.
Parents have been calling for upgrades to the district’s athletic facilities at recent meetings. In January, 27 people emailed the school district on the matter, saying the current state of the facilities at the district is “embarrassing.”
“I have to say that I am disappointed in the sports facilities (with the exception of Vets Field), particularly at the high school,” Steve Kils wrote in an email at the time. “For example, lighted football/soccer/lacrosse/field hockey fields with either well-groomed grass or, preferably, artificial turf is the standard. Our children are competing with others throughout the country with these basics, and I believe strongly that we need to make these upgrades a priority for our community and school district.”
Rohma Abbas contributed reporting.