On Wednesday, Jan. 27, the Seal Beach Recreation and Parks Commission decided to pursue a grant proposing a small community center, including restrooms and a patio, at Heather Park in the College Park East neighborhood.
It will be up to the City Council to approve seeking the grant.
The matter is expected to come before the council on Monday, Feb. 8.
The grant deadline is March 1.
Building a community center is seen as a step toward increasing the availability of community service programs to neighborhood residents. The commission made the decision to seek the grant after reviewing the application requirements of the California Department of Parks and Recreation Statewide Park Development and Community Revitalization Program Grant.
The Recreation and Parks Commission assessed potential projects that would meet the project selection criteria of the grant program.
This grant program is a competitive process based on the creation of new parks and new recreation opportunities in proximity to the most critically underserved communities.
The California Parks Department has currently made $368 million available to projects that will benefit the health of families, youth, senior citizens, and other population groups by meeting their recreational, cultural, social, educational, and environmental needs.
According to a press release issued by the city of Seal Beach, the grant funds do not require matching appropriations from the city and the only financial impact would be the ongoing cost of facility maintenance, which should be minimal for a new facility. There is a minimum grant request of $100,000 and maximum of $5 million available per project.
As discussed by both the City Council and Recreation and Parks Commission, one of the Community Services Department’s recently established goals includes increasing recreation opportunities, specifically in College Park East.
However, one of the major limitations of programming recreational classes and activities in College Park East is the lack of a community center or restroom facilities.
For this reason, the statewide Parks Development Program was identified as an opportunity for the city to request funding for a potential project in College Park East based upon selection criteria of the grant program.
As a result of Wednesday night’s unanimous decision by the Recreation and Parks Commission to pursue the submission of a grant proposal for a small community center, including restrooms and a patio, at Heather Park in College Park East, at its Feb. 8 meeting the City Council will consider authorizing the grant application submission.