Parks are not a utility

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To the Editor:

Let me first say that I support parks and am willing to help fund them, but only when the funding isn’t collected via a utility bill.

Next November there will most likely be a ballot measure asking for funding for parks. The idea at this point is to tack on a parks fee to your water/utility bill. This is just wrong. Utility bills are for utilities!

The reasoning for this collection method is to insure continued funding for parks. What this really means is the proponents do not believe the citizens should be able to vote for or against future funding. If a fee is instituted, can the council then up the fee any time they want without voter approval? Will the administration fee on the water bill go up as well?

In order to insure the parks money is being spent wisely, future needs should be addressed periodically and the voters should actually have a say on funding. I would support a levy for tax based approach much like the Fire District has. This will insure accountability and keep the voters in the loop.

A vote for a fee on a utility bill is a vote to give up your vote on future increases. A vote for a tax based levy is a responsible method to fund parks.

Ted Plumb
Keizer

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