Where's the money coming from?

Posted: Tuesday, April 13, 2004

OK, my question is for the city. What are you thinking? On Friday, April 9, on page one of the Juneau Empire the headline reads "City's deficit may force cuts in bus service," then continues to page 10, "Budget: City manager proposes cutting more than 11 full-time positions."

The article reports Parks and Recreation Department faces $530,000 in cuts in fiscal years 2005 and 2006 along with a full-time staff reduction. Therefore, facilities will be open to the public fewer hours, including the Treadwell Ice Arena, Zach Gordon Youth Center and Augustus Brown Swimming Pool. Now to page three. Headline, "Designers seek comments on Mendenhall Valley rec. center." Now I live in the valley and think a recreation center would be great, but not at the expense of the other facilities. Water slides. Fireplaces in the library. A 100,000 square-foot recreation center. Were is the money coming from? Projected revenue is down, except property taxes. In addition, if we build it, where do we get the money to staff a new facility? The ones we have are cutting hours and staff. I would like to know why, if the city is facing a deficit, designers were hired in January to plan a valley recreation center? How much money are the designers costing the city? Could that money have been put to better use keeping our buses running? By not reducing much-needed staff? Or not cutting hours of operation to our existing facilities?

Mikell Adair


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