Airway Heights to vote on youth and senior commissions
Two more boards may join Airway Heights as Park and Recreations is looking to establish both a youth and senior advisory commissions.
The idea for these commissions came up after meetings between J.C. Kennedy, Mayor Patrick Rushing and Councilman Dave Malet. Kennedy then brought up the proposed ordinances during the Jan. 13 City Council study session. He mentioned the commissions would serve in a similar capacity as the Park Advisory Board.
Kennedy said that engaging students in the area can be difficult due to lack of a facility, a middle school or a high school.
“They are engaging in activities, but it is in in Cheney instead of Airway Heights,” Kennedy said. “We need to find a way to serve the youth better, and no better way than to go to the source. We want to ask them ‘What can we do to make growing up here better for you in the community?’”
According to Ordinance C-821, the Youth Advisory Commission will act in an advisory capacity to the City Council on matters pertaining to the youth, especially as it relates to municipal programs and projects. The commissoin will also maintain a working relationship with organizations working towards a better quality of life for youth and children, recognize youth and children making significant contributions to the community.
The commission will get to design and participate in activities and programs intended to generate youth input and identify the unmet needs of youth and children through personal contact with youth and children, school officials, youth providers and others.
The Youth Advisory Commission will be comprised of 10 members: two elementary school students, four middle school students and four high school students. The City Council will appoint the members of the commission who will serve for a period of two years. High school students that are appointed to the board during their senior year will serve until they graduate. The term of an appointed commissioner shall be from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30 of each calendar year.
Similar to the youth commission, the Senior Advisory Board, according to Ordinance C-820, will act in an advisory capacity to the City Council on matters pertaining to the senior population. They will also maintain a working relationship with organizations working toward a better quality of life for seniors, recognize seniors making significant contributions to the community; and design and participate in activities and programs intended to generate senior input.
The Senior Advisory Commission will be comprised of five to seven members, all of whom will be appointed by the City Council, and will serve for a period of three years. A commissioner’s term shall coincide with the calendar year, from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31.
Both commissions will have officer positions of chairman, vice chair and secretary. The Youth Advisory Commission will also have a treasurer. Members of both commissions will serve without pay.
Kennedy mentioned that the city does not have a dedicated facility for seniors, however a lot of seniors are excited about the commission. He also said one of the goals is to open a multi-purpose room and the Senior Advisory Commission could be a way to “breath life into the project.”
“The youth and senior advisory boards can be a way to engage these age groups and have them come up with their own programs,” Kennedy said.
The ordinances proposing both commissions were presented at the Jan. 21 City Council meeting and will be up for vote, Feb. 3.
Al Stover can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.