EAST LIVERPOOL - The resignation of Thompson Park Superintendent Robb Kenny was accepted this week by the park board, which has asked the Civil Service Commission to begin the process of testing for a replacement.
In his Nov. 21 resignation letter, Kenny said he was leaving to accept an opportunity to work in a larger park in a different state, with his resignation effective Nov. 26.
He thanked the board for the honor of serving as superintendent, writing, "It has truly been a great experience working in the gem of East Liverpool," and also thanking the community for its support and for "making the park feel like home."
Kenny and his son lived in the superintendent's house near the park's entrance. He reportedly has accepted a position in Florida.
In response to Kenny's letter, the board named the park's assistant manager David Quarterman as interim superintendent until a competitive exam can be offered by the Civil Service Commission, which meets Dec. 12. The board expects it won't have a list of eligible candidates until the end of January.
Meanwhile, board members are looking at changes to the job description and also improvements to the superintendent's house.
Member Wink Smith questioned whether the passing grade on the competitive exam can be changed from 70 to 75, which will be posed to the commission.
Also being looked at in regard to the position are wages, experience and the procedure for handling rental and cleanup fees.
The board will hold a special meeting at 4 p.m. next Tuesday to discuss possible changes to the position.
President Burl Warrick also distributed a report regarding an inspection at the park house, saying he has met with several contractors in regard to repairs.
The inspection, conducted Dec. 1 by Warrick, Smith, Quarterman and Dave Dawson, indicated a multitude of repairs and cosmetic fixes need completed both inside and outside, and Warrick also said he would like to see a washer and dryer purchased for the house.
In other matters, Smith reported the park has received a $10,000 donation from the estate of Harold F. Haynes, who died this past August. Haynes began working at the age of 15 at Homer Laughlin China Co., becoming an apprentice jiggerman, and also working at other potteries then retiring from Sayre Electric.
In addition to this donation, Haynes' family had requested memorial tributes take the form of contributions to the park, with $130 received. When composer Will Thompson started the park, it was partially to provide a place for potters to escape the potteries and find clean air and green space on their days off.
Laura Smith addressed the board regarding the girls' softball field which was recently renovated, saying her concern is that, in girls' softball, the infield is dirt, while this field has a grass infield.
Laura Smith told the board the girls are not accustomed to playing on grass, and the ball will bounce differently on grass.
Wink Smith advised the ball field is a school board project the park board had "inherited," but he will pose her concerns to Dave Dawson, who has been overseeing the project.
Also discussed were plans not to have dugouts at the field, just benches, to cut down on the potential for vandalism since the field is somewhat secluded.
The park board's next regular meeting will be at 4 p.m. Jan. 9 in council chambers.