To the Editor: Opposes park tax

Remember the proposed city parks tax assessment? The city manager and parks staff are laser-focused on pushing another tax on us to “fund” parks needs. The list is long, and so far your representatives on the council have held no reviews of this list or its actual basis in fact.

Because of that, I will try to provide a citizen’s review of my own as to what the city staff wants and what it looks like we actually need. This review is provided as information that you are not being given by the city at this time. For Freedom Park, the city has proposed $299,000. On the list is $200,000 for a bathroom, along with $85,000 for gazebo and well repair. The cost for the bathroom is extremely high and no actual need was justified and no factual basis for the repairs was given. Thus actual needs are less than $93,000. For Upjohn Park, there’s a proposed cost of $312,000. This list has $250,000 to add playground equipment (we just replaced that), $40,000 for other additions and $5,000 to snoop on you with security cameras. Actual needs look like $11,000.

For Pearson Park, there’s a proposed cost of $582,000. This list has $250,000 for playground equipment (again, we just replaced that), $200,000 for a bathroom (the park’s done fine for more than 12 years without one) and $40,000 for other goodies. There is also $5,000 for security cameras and more than $5,000 to fix the drinking fountain. (Really?) Also there’s a very high estimate of $70,000 for well repair. The actual need for this park looks like maybe $82,000.

So, to recap — a reasonable dollar-conscious evaluation of the estimates for just these three parks comes up with actual need of $186,000, as opposed to the city’s proposed list of more than $1,000,000.

Does something sound off here? Wouldn’t you want a chance to review this list before the presumptive effort by the city to sell you on the idea of this tax began?

Sorry, but you weren’t given that chance by the city. Just wait until you see the list for LeRoy Jackson and Kerr McGee at more than $6,000,000 — coming soon.

Freedom to the people from over taxation.

Mike Neel

Story First Published: 2018-03-02