Who Gets to Run Jelleff Recreation Center?
The D.C. Office of the Attorney General issued a “corrective action” that cancels the remaining four years of a contract with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington to run Jelleff Recreation Center at 3265 S Street. The Friends of Jelleff had protested the previous decision. The city bought the land two years ago from the cash-strapped Boys & Girls Club.
The Jan. 31 ANC 2E meeting was a dust-up of who gets to use that field. Director of Parks and Recreation, Jesús Aguirre, was at the meeting to talk about the deal of use by Maret School on Cathedral Avenue. The school's head Marjo Talbott defended the 10-year deal and Maret's exclusive times of use as the school has invested about $2.5 million in improvements to the property. Maret had been in discussions with the Boys & Girls Club before the city purchased the land for the community. Among the others who use the field regularly are the nearby British School and Stoddert Soccer.
Some participants and community members at the meeting said they felt blindsided by the exclusive deal that seemed "to lack transparency" with the public. The ANC agreed on a resolution that sought to have the Department of Parks and Recreation and Maret School void the existing contract: "These agreements . . . were entered into behind closed doors, without meaningful attempts by DPR [Department of Parks and Recreation] to solicit community input or engage in a more competitive process." A little confused? Who's on first? Stay tuned, kids.