Different rules govern use of sports fields


POSTED: Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Question: What agency is responsible for the baseball field on the grounds of Stevenson Middle School — Roosevelt High School or the city Parks Department? Who has rights to use that field?

Answer: The large expanse there is divided into a baseball and a softball field.

The baseball field is under the jurisdiction of the state Department of Education and is shared by Stevenson and Roosevelt High School.

Roosevelt students have practices there on a regular basis, while Stevenson uses it during the course of a school day for physical education and recess activities, said Stevenson Principal Gregg Lee.

The baseball field is not generally made available to the public.

However, Lee said the softball field is shared with the city Department of Parks and Recreation — the school uses it during the day, but the city manages its use for nights and weekends.

The joint-use agreement was worked out between the Department of Education and Parks Department “;long ago,”; said parks Director Lester Chang.

While the two fields and outdoor courts on the school grounds are owned and maintained by the DOE, the city installed and maintains the lights at the softball field, he said. There are no lights at the baseball field.

DOE has priority use on all regularly scheduled school days from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., while the Parks Department schedules use of the facilities after 6 p.m. on regularly scheduled school days and on all non-school days, Chang said.

However, there may be exceptions to those times.

DOE may schedule use of the softball field for non-school days by notifying the Parks Department at least two weeks in advance, Chang explained.

Also, organized groups may use the softball field between 2:30 and 6 p.m. by routing their requests through the Parks Department and with the approval of the Stevenson principal, he said.

Q: I was with a friend recently when she called 911 to report a theft. The behavior of the officer who responded made me wonder if the Honolulu Police Department has a policy regarding the use of personal cell phones while on duty. The officer's cell phone went off about three times (musical ring tones) while he was taking his report and each time he answered, he said he was on a case and would call back. As he prepared to leave, he reassured my friend that the area was his beat and that he would be watching the area during his rounds. It's not very reassuring to think that this officer is watching for suspicious activity if he's busy talking on his cell phone.

A: HPD does not have a specific policy regarding cell-phone use, but officers should be professional in their conduct, said Maj. Frank Fujii, spokesman for the police department.

That means “;they should not be taking personal calls while handling cases,”; he said.

If any member of the public has a concern regarding the conduct of an officer, they can call 911 and ask to speak to the officer's supervisor, Fujii said. Be prepared to give the officer's name or badge number.



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