Page 4 - 2021 Annual Report
P. 4

  Vision Statement
Dear friends,
2021 was another challenging year for the East Baton Rouge community and BREC team. Despite devastating weather events which included an ice storm and multiple hurricanes, several serious surges of the COVID-19 virus and the filing of Senate Bill 205 which threatened to break apart the BREC system and create three additional park agencies, BREC was able to serve more than 1-million people at its staffed parks, events and programs. All recreation facilities were able to open in 2021 including Liberty Lagoon Water Park, summer camps provided much-needed socialization for children across the parish and both Golf and the Baton Rouge Zoo continued setting records for attendance.
The new Partnership and Development Division hired a firm to evaluate the BREC system for sponsorship opportunities and suggested value, worked with a national consultant to work with the public to create a community engagement policy which will lead to the creation of citizen advisory councils and with Trust for Public Land to determine the economic impact of BREC on the community. BREC’s newly created Small Business Program began its work ensuring disadvantaged businesses (DBEs) are considered in all purchases made by the park system and BREC staff created the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee which began planning a series of programs for the BREC team that are launching this spring.
Agency wide efforts to become more efficient, more transparent, and better measure outcomes continued with the implementation of new software systems offering online tee times for golf and the ability to purchase digital tickets and memberships for the Zoo. The Planning and Engineering and Park Operation teams should launch systems in 2022 while Finance and HR work to open new modules of the Munis ERP system which replaced New World in January of 2021. You will see examples of how all departments are better able to measure their services in this document with charts, graphs, and data throughout the report. The report also incorporates the essay questions used on the National Recreation and Park Association’s Gold Medal application for 2021 as we seek to bring the gold back to East Baton Rouge.
BREC’s planning team continued its aggressive effort to complete construction projects in the park system keeping an important sector of the economy in business. The team had 88 projects of varying scope and size underway in 2021 in design/planning and construction. They include:
• The reimagination of the Zoo and Greenwood Community Park
• Dredging and revitalization of the Lakes area
• A master plan for the 13th community park at Airline Highway
• New recreation centers at Howell and Jackson Community Parks
• Education building and master plan for Frenchtown Road Conservation Area • A 7-mile greenway to connect Scotlandville Parkway to Downtown
• The first turfed fields in the system at Central Sports Park
• Incorporating green infrastructure into all major projects to prevent flooding
Despite the continued uncertainty of increasing challenging weather events and the pandemic, we are excited as we plan for our award-winning summer camps to begin, our water park, splash pads and swimming pools to open. a 75th birthday party postponed by weather in December and are hopeful that we will be able to provide a full year of safe, healthy fun and memorable experiences in 2022.
Sincerely,
Corey K. Wilson, BREC Superintendent
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