Quilters needle Cameron board over contract

By From page A1 | January 20, 2012

CAMERON PARK — It was a raucous meeting Wednesday night at the meeting of the Cameron Park Community Services District Board of Directors.

One resident after another complained about the lack of transparency in district business while also directing personal barbs at certain board members and the general manager. “You work for us,” said one angry resident, “and we’re not going to let you forget it.”

One major area of concern was the financial status of the center. According to a financial report covering the first six months of the fiscal year, the center is $128,501 in the red.

District General Manager Mary Cahill said they are working on doing a better job of marketing the center, but currently they are not bringing in enough revenue to cover their costs and staff doesn’t expecct the second half of the year to be any better.

One suggestion was to track when different departments use the facility to determine if they are paying their fair share of its cost. Another area was improving the reservation process for those wanting to use the facility.

However, the most contentious issue of the evening was the status of a contract with the Golden Nugget Quilters. A facility rental agreement was negotiated in October 2010 giving the group the use of the facility until 2016 for a set fee. That agreement was negotiated and signed by the prior general manager rather than by the board of directors.

An area overlooked in the contract was insurance indemnifying the district against potential accidents. As the contract stands now, if someone in the group were to injure herself the district and taxpayers would be on the hook for any damages. “Many of you would be upset if the district got sued for millions of dollars,” said board member Sean Tucker.

Members of the group challenged the insurance requirement, saying they already have a signed contract and they should not be required to renegotiate it or to pay for insurance. They asked the district to honor the existing agreement. In return they promised to help market the center.

The issue was concluded by the board agreeing to a followup meeting between staff, board members and the quilting group. Board President Shiva Frentzen said they were glad the quilting group was using the center and providing it with revenue. She also said that they intended to honor the remaining four years of the contract.

Dawn Hodson

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