To the Editor: Final concerns about park tax

This is the last citizen’s review of the proposed parks improvement wish list that the city of Ridgecrest want to tax us to get the money for. This one is for the Kerr McGee Center for $1.9 million.

These mostly maintenance items may actually be needed. So let’s review them. Here are the items that seem to be reasonable — carpet all rooms, redo parking lot, replace hardwood floors and window coverings, maintain grass, redo basketball and racquetball courts, redo kitchen equipment and redo roof. Seem reasonable, but for a cost of $396,000 I would ask once again, where are the cost estimates? None given.

A high-ticket item is to redo the entire exterior and interior, all of it, every door, all walls, all outside stucco, everything. For a hefty $238,000 — where is the estimate, give us a contractor provided cost estimate and a detailed item-by-tem review of the actual need. Another high-dollar item is cost for partitions in hall and meeting rooms — no labor. This one goes for $209,000. Sounds real high to me. And why shouldn’t it, since no contractor cost estimate was provided.

Two remaining items are to repair or replace the heating and AC and to remodel the bathrooms. The cost is $800,000 for this. This is a very high amount, and again, no contractor cost estimate was provided. It really seems like getting solid cost estimates on all this work is a problem for our well-paid public servants at City Hall, I don’t understand.

Now two last items that I would put on the wants not needs list are playground equipment and preschool remodel. These were not discussed at all, no pictures of current condition, no justification of need. So we have another $250,000 of wants here. This list comes out to $396,000 of work that needs cost estimates, $1.2 million of work that looks very inflated in cost estimate and $250,00 of wants.

Again, 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 you weren’t given that chance. But you have this review to work off if you want to hold City Hall accountable.

Mike Neel

Story First Published: 2018-03-23