Council considers possible committee to mull future Berea Recreation Center expansion

BEREA, Ohio — Discussions are under way in Berea about possibly forming a City Council recreation committee.

Mayor Cyril Kleem recently suggested the idea in an email to council members, following up with additional details during the Jan. 19 council meeting. He plans to create an ad-hoc citizens’ recreation committee, but he believes a corresponding council committee should be formed as well.

Only City Council can create council committees.

“We are looking at possibly expanding the recreation center,” Kleem explained. “We have done some very preliminary concepts, trying to get some ideas for what our needs are and what those costs would be.”

The city would not raises taxes to pay for the recreation center improvements, which would be done “as cost-effectively as possible,” he emphasized.

“We’re not looking at anything extravagant,” Kleem said. “I thought it would make sense if the citizens’ committee worked with a council committee, since ultimately this (facility expansion) would come before you at some point.”

The citizens’ committee would be comprised of regular recreation center users and/or family members who participate in the various programs, he said. It would provide input on the facility expansion, as well as programming.

Council President Jeff Dettmer noted that there has not been a recreation committee since 2011, when the Recreation and Community Services Committee existed.

“I don’t think there’s really been much of a reason to have a rec committee in the last decade or so, but with possible expansion of the rec (center), and also maybe some changing, expanding or evolving of the programming, maybe there is a reason to create a committee for that,” Dettmer said.

“That’s definitely something we should take under advisement and see if that makes sense to do going forward,” Dettmer added.

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