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MORE ON COLLEGE PARK.....Lest We Forget....

{ Oxnard, Calif: - September 4, 2001 }

Open Letter to: Members of College Park Advisory Committee

RE: Golf Course at College Park

Dear Members:

First and foremost, I don't play golf or have any interest in playing golf. I see having a limited golf course as a source of funding. According to the budget, it takes 4.5 hours to play 18 holes. The costs are $25 for residents and $30.00 for non residents. Over 60,000 rounds of golf are played per year. The city is planning to build a second 18 hole golf course next year. A six hole golf course would take 1.5 hours to play. In all likelihood, there is a strong demand to play just 1.5 hours of golf. The chart below describes the amount of land necessary for a 6 hole course.

Acre ( sq. ft 43560 ) (sq. Yd. 4840 )

6 Hole

2 par 5 - 500 Yd.

2 par 4 - 400 Yd.

2 par 3 - 300 Yd.

Green to Tee 3 - 33 Yd.

Fair Way Width 2 - 50 Yd.

sq. Yd. 130,000

sq. Yd. per acre 4,840

Acres Needed 27

This is too much land for a single use activity. If golf usage was restricted to 4 weekdays and Sunday, the fairways could be used for other recreational activities such as youth and adult soccer, dog shows and passive activities. With the approval of the local adjacent neighborhoods such as, Diamond Bad / Green Castle and College Park, proper lighting could be installed to allow extended play (no later than 9:00 PM would be my suggestion) If 40.000 rounds were play at $25.00 per round, $1,000.000.00 in revenue would be generated. Based on the records on file with the city clerk regarding River Ridge, there should be sufficient funds to subsidize other activities.

Please consider this proposal as a compromise to generate funding and provide recreational activity to a larger group of the population.

Sincerely, - Larry Stein

Alternate Member - College Park Advisory Committee



I have been waiting for twenty years for College Park to be developed; so forgive me if I seem impatient. About twenty years ago when the County took over College Park there were three buildings on the site.

The County added to the park by building a group barbecue area, a parking lot and picnic area. Then for the next twenty years the County tried to get the City of Oxnard to agree on future development of the park. When that failed the County gave College Park to the City of Oxnard. The City has had sole control of the park for more than a year and still not much has happened. So far the only thing the City has accomplished is to set up a committee to decide what to do with College Park. The College Park Advisory Committee has met 3 times and their last draft proposal called for the destruction of all facilities presently at the park (parking lot, 3 buildings, barbecue and picnic areas) to be replaced mainly by adult soccer and other organized adult sport activities. The destruction of the facilities at College Park is both morally and financially irresponsible. There is no money to replace these facilities. The City will receive approximately 3 million dollars from the State which is supposed to be spent on this park.

According to Mr. Henderson, Director of Oxnard Parks and Recreation, it will cost over 10 million dollars to build out College Park.

To their credit the City of Oxnard has a good recreation program. A good recreation program for everyone in the City except for the 29,000+ children in southeast Oxnard. I can't help but get angry when I look at Oxnard's 26 page Recreation Guide. Many exciting and worthwhile activities for children are being held at Colonia Park, the Performing Arts Center and old Oxnard High School. However the Recreation Guide fails to provide any recreational activities for the 29,000+ children who live south of Wooley and east of Saviers.

With these 29,000+ children in mind I recommend that the Oxnard Recreation Department use the 3 buildings at College Park for a PAL Program, City Corps Center, and Youth Activity Center. PAL. According to the Recreation Guide, the PAL (Police Activities League) program provides supervised recreational activities for children. The nonprofit organization involves police, parents and community volunteers in a personal commitment of time and energy to the youth of the community. Youth Activity Center. The City of Oxnard has three Youth Activity Centers which provide sports, arts, crafts, excursions, etc. The Centers are open Monday through Friday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. There are three Youth Activity Centers in the City. None of them are in southeast Oxnard. City Corps. City Corps is a volunteer youth group that provides community services to everyone in the City. The program is open to both boys and girls from their teen years through age 24.

The above three adult supervised programs should be installed at College Park immediately. I favor these programs only because they are presently in full operation in other parts of the City. If someone could persuade the Boys and Girls Club, the "Y" or the Library to locate activities at College Park they would be equally welcome. The 29,000+ children in southeast Oxnard are as deserving of recreational activities as children in the rest of the City. They should be provided these programs now.

The barbecue area at College Park is an ideal setting for a summer day camp program. A day camp program at College Park could be a unique experience for children since it could incorporate a study of the natural wonders in the park, including monarch butterflies, birds, owls, squirrels, wetlands, etc.

Who knows when the College Park Advisory Committee will make up its mind about what to do with College Park. The Oxnard Budget provides that this Committee will continue on into 2002. Even if the Committee eventually comes up with a plan, the plan will have to be approved by the Recreation Commission and the City Council. After that I suppose everyone will fight over what sport facility will be built first since there is only 3 million dollars available and over 10 million is need to complete the park.

 Forgive me if I lose patience but the children of southeast Oxnard should not have to wait any longer for after school and summer activities. The buildings and barbecue area at College Park are not surplus property to be simply destroyed. They can provide valuable recreational activities for our children now. There should be an immediate stop to any talk of destroying what is presently in the park. The City of Oxnard should immediately implement a plan to use existing facilities at College Park to provide recreational activities for children. In the last 20 years a whole generation of young people has grown up without activities at College Park. Our children should not have to wait any longer. I suggest that the College Park Advisory Committee decide immediately to leave in place existing facilities at the park. The committee needs to understand that these facilities are not surplus property to be disposed of with no consideration of the needs of the children in southeast Oxnard. The three existing buildings probably total less than 10,000 square feet. The new Boys and Girls Club on West Fifth Street is 28,500 square feet. Ten thousand square feet of in door space is probably not enough for all the needs of our children but it is all we have. Therefore all existing space in these buildings should be used solely for the children of Oxnard. Outside interests should understand that the needs of 29,000+ children are our first priority and we simply do not have the luxury of giving space to a museum. This park also does not have the space to provide 20 acres for growing crops. Next I would suggest to the College Park Advisory Committee that the remaining 50 acres at College Park be used for the the following sports activities: Swimming pool; children's playground; four basketball courts; four volleyball courts; four children's soccer fields; one Pony League field; one softball field; and one baseball field.

After these sports facilities are in place the remainder of the land should be used for picnic areas and bike and jogging paths. Concrete paths should be plentiful to provide access to all areas of the park for everyone especially the handicapped, the elderly and children in strollers. Hopefully it will not take another twenty years to develop the rest of College Park. However in the meantime we must use current park facilities for supervised recreational activities for children. I welcome your comments and support.

Lois Jones ---Oxnard, CA


Wednesday the July 25 the Parks and Recreation Commission was told that the wetlands at College Park would by law and grant conditions have to stay. And further the State could help in an effort to find money to enhance the wetlands. The role I played in this will never be accepted or acknowledged, but without my knowledge of the existence of the quit claim deed and it's conditions and demanding that the committee I am on receive and read the documents this would not have happened.

That is but one example of the cavalier attitude that the College Park Advisory Committee (CPAC) has taken to the use of College Park for outdoor public recreation and the written recorded agreements. The suggestions and the drawings so far put forward by CPAC indicate little, if any, compliance with the conditions of the deed. The drawings and suggestions eliminate all existing assets and would use the Park for purposes other than outdoor public recreation. In southeast Oxnard alone there are over 29,000 children with little opportunity for them to engage in recreational activities.

 It has become obvious to me that College Park will become the dumping ground for every bad idea that the City does not want anywhere except on the South side of Oxnard. Remember the Pacific Suns. Please refer to the last sentence of the first paragraph carried over from page three of the quit claim deed: "Immediately upon such a termination, the City and/or its successors and assigns shall forfeit all right, title and interest to the Property, and the Property shall revert to County or any County successor or assign."

 It is inconceivable to me that the most corrupt city in the County of Ventura will carry out its duties and obligations agreed to in accepting and signing the quit claim deed. Therefore I am urging the serious consideration the reacquisition of College Park and assigning the Park to the College District for further use and development.

Martin Jones -- Chairman, College Park Neighborhood


College Park

For me, Martin Jones, College Park really started about five years ago. Bedford Pinkard was on the verge of obtaining College Park from the County to build a sub-standard (literally) baseball stadium for the Pacific Suns. Yes, the second worst baseball team in history. At that time I contacted my County Supervisor, Frank Schillo, and asked him to meet with people from my neighborhood and some others including Rebecca Ralph. Frank did and told the City representatives, Karen Burnham and Michael Henderson, that the City could have College Park if the City did not build a baseball stadium. And that began the pitiful saga of the Pacific Suns and Oxnard College and the City of Oxnard.

I won't digress.

But as I explained my opposition to the Suns to Jane Tolmach she wisely said, "You can't just be against something, you have to be for something." I drew a blank. I repeated Jane's statement to Rebecca Ralph and she said, "Swimming Pool!"

College Park [ fifty acres] was transferred to the City on June 4 1969 by grant deed duly recorded on June 6 1969. The City deeded the fifty acres to the County on November 20 1979 by grant deed. That occurred because the City did not have any money to develop the fifty acres. The County had at the time twenty five contiguous acres. The resulting combined acres are known as College Park. College Park was reconveyed to the City by quitclaim deed with conditions on June 20, 2000.

Supervisor Flynn had a lot to do with the conditions in the quitclaim deed that gave College Park to the City.

During the years that the County retained possession of College Park at least four proposals to develop the acres into a public park were made to the City by the County. Supervisor Flynn was involved with some or all of the proposals put before the City. All were rejected. At one meeting of the South Oxnard Revitalization Committee Councilman Maulhardt when asked why the City had not joined with the County in developing a public park he responded that he had not seen or read or knew anything about the proposals but (in spite of his self admitted ignorance) he was sure it was a bad deal for the City.

In the proposals made by the County to the City were: a lake with a ceremonial garden and all of the usual that goes with a mixed use public park. In addition to what was already there other proposals were a nine hole golf course and swimming pool.

The present Committee on which I am a member is proposing what I consider a tragedy. Keep in mind there isn't any money. The present proposals consider the demolition of what is there. All of which was built with State and Federal grants. The grants and the reconveyance deed all state the improvements will remain in "perpetuity". The amphitheatre, picnic area, barbecue area, kitchen, wetlands and rest rooms all will go. Never mind the conditions in the quitclaim deed that incorporated the conditions of the State and Federal grants. The grant conditions, the quit claim deed and other documents all refer to recreational purposes and a public park. One of the present proposals is twenty acres of farming. Crop growing is not an example of out door public recreation. There isn't any money to replace anything that is demolished, ergo demolition is stupid on its' face. There is hopefully three million dollars coming from the State. With that we could build a swimming pool. Even the town of Mariposa (population 1900) has a public swimming pool. With what is presently at College Park and a public swimming pool the City would be on its' way to a beautiful outdoor public park reserved for outdoor public recreation.

It is my understanding that Oxnard College is willing to participate with the City in developing College Park by donating approximately fifteen acres of College land. If and only if the City doesn't develop something at the park that harms or diminishes the reputation of the College. Guilt by association, if you will.

Martin Jones -- Chairman College Park Neighborhood


Thank you to Martin and Lois for their selfless efforts to PASS THE WORD.



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