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West U parks get top state award for excellence

March 8, 2016 By:George Boehme

Local News

Gold Medal AwardThe Texas Recreation and Park Society Institute honored the City of West University Place with its most prestigious award at its Annual Awards Ceremony on March 4 at the Galveston Island Convention Center.

In receiving the Gold Medal Award, City Manager M. Christopher Peifer said, “The City of West University Place is so very honored to receive this recognition for the forethought of its elected officials and appointed board members over the years and the extraordinary giving nature of its residents which supported the investment and unceasing efforts of staff to create a premier program for a premier city.”

From left to right: Friends of West U Parks Board Chair Mark Prescott, Parks Board Chair Kevin Boyle, Senior Services Board Chair Michelle Moore, and Friends of West U Parks Executive Director Donna LaMond

From left to right: Friends of West U Parks Board Chair Mark Prescott, Parks Board Chair Kevin Boyle, Senior Services Board Chair Michelle Moore, and Friends of West U Parks Executive Director Donna LaMond

West University Place is the only city with a population of less than 20K to receive this designation in 2016.

The statewide Gold Medal Award honors communities that demonstrate excellence in long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, community programs and events, public input, environmental stewardship, program development, marketing and promotional efforts and agency recognition. Award nominees are measured on the ability to address the needs of those they serve.

4 Responses to “West U parks get top state award for excellence”

  1. Anon Says:

    I disagree with the previous comment. Look at the awesome parks system this department maintains. The Rec Center and Colonial Pool are the envy of many families not living here. Even if you don’t like the current parks, their location, their utility, the lack of green space (I don’t see that one at all), you benefit from these parks in the form of higher property values. You benefit from a community that is much more attractive than our neighbors, including Bellaire who even with a massive land gift is not nearly as pretty as we are. Even down to the beautiful publications they produce. Those take talent and hard work. The seasonal rec center course offerings are of the quality that few, if any, can replicate. This is all done by minimal budget and staff. Can we do more, sure. I’d like to see our crumbling library replaced. But what we have now, I wouldn’t trade for anything,

    • Anonymous Says:

      Not true! Bellaire has awesome parks! Bellaire includes citizen input, not just hand picked “buddies”, or “Yes men” as in WUP. Bellaire has better leadership, not like in WUP, who cater to “favorites”. This was obvious when I saw WUP transport a, individual WUP senior to a shopping area, then wait in the parking space for that person to finish shopping! Is this effective use of tax resources? Of course not! An 80 year old citizen requested to watch a movie. The staff first refused to comply, then stated, if the movie was provided, then MAYBE she would set the movie up. Really? Wup staff schedule lunch at expensive restaurants, then seniors are expected to PAY! The Rotary Club donated $500. to provide WUP seniors breakfast. The Senior Center staff CHARGED seniors for a breakfast that was donated! And, they changed the request to exclude non-favorite senior citizens! This city needs different staff who are responsive to the needs of EVERY senior in this community, not discriminate. This city needs new leadership, who will provide equal services to every citizen, without bias. At present, there are WUP senior citizens who are refused services, while non-citizens are given priority treatment. It occurs to me that Anon may be on staff under an alias. The citizens know the truth! Citizens know that leadership ignores the will of the people, supports staff who recycle the same, tired ideas, and discriminate against ANYONE who speaks up against the many injustices. We need different leadership. I hope when it is time to vote, the people will vote for different candidates, not those who broke promises, are not fiscally responsible, and dismissive to citizens.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Another meaningless award! WUP leadership ignores the Will of the People. Citizen surveys state WUP citizens want open green space. Workers are currently covering up green space at Colonial Park with decks to be rented out. The Parks Director constantly adds fences dividing the open spaces. Seniors have no designated parks, while playground equipment overtakes designated park space so there is no real open green space. Did I mention that most of the park space is on the west side, despite repeated requests from citizens to stop discriminating against the east side by ignoring need for parkland on the east side of WUP? Promises made to purchase additional east side parkland have stalled, while additional resources are allocated to the west side. WUP park plans are about a decade old. This is another award that is without real merit! This city does NOT deserve an award for parks that our citizens find no real open green space, without trees for shade in the summer, in need of repair, with playground equipment too large for the space, no water elements to attract nature, etc. If you want to give an award, give it to the City of Bellaire. They truly deserve an award for their park planning, open green spaces, water elements in the parks, nature education, exceptional planning, and the ability to welcome everyone. This city pales in comparison! WUP has another bogus award. Give yourself another raise without doing any real work.

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