The Washington Parks Department’s quest to be able to accept credit cards is moving forward.
The city council had no issues with a proposal by Parks and Recreation Director Darren Dunkle at the Jan. 22 administration/operations committee meeting to purchase new computer software for the department.
The council will vote on the contract at a future meeting.
Dunkle said the new software will cost $17,444. The city had budgeted $20,000 for the purchase.
The new software is part of Tyler Technologies parks and rec module. The city uses Tyler Technologies in other departments.
Dunkle said the parks department has been trying to improve on how it accepts registrations for events. The biggest goal was credit card transactions.
The department has been using a product called RecTrac, which allows employees to track facility reservations and take registrations for various parks programs.
The program works fine, Dunkle said, it’s just not compatible with the city’s Tyler Technologies finance software. Dunkle said his staff often has to do double the work to get RecTrac data into the Tyler system.
The RecTrac system also doesn’t allow for online registration and does not accept credit cards — two features commonly requested by residents, Dunkle said.
“Right now we don’t accept credit cards or debit cards and it is an inconvenience to our residents,” he said. “Lots of people have to go to ATMs, so what we’re looking at is a new program so we can do those sorts of things.”
Dunkle said the parks module on Tyler can do everything RecTrac does and more.
The park board supported the purchase of the software at its December meeting. Members of the board said it’s “ridiculous” the parks department isn’t already taking credit cards from customers. They are excited about unveiling this new feature.