To The Editor:
I am writing in response to Mr. Dennis Karius’ letter that appeared in The Missourian May 30.
While he cites some impressive statistics, the logic is flawed and the math is “fuzzy.” For starters, he notes that 1,657 kids are not playing in sports leagues. Correct me if I’m wrong, but is there some language on the ballot that says this park can only be used by kids playing sports? This will be a multi-use facility that people of all ages will enjoy. In addition to that, we are trying to grow our sports programs and provide opportunities for all kids to benefit from the many positive aspects of youth sports. We do not want to remain static. We want those 1,657 kids to join us and in order to do that, we need expanded facilities. The facilities we currently have do not sufficiently meet the needs of the 1,220 who are playing.
Mr. Karius evaluates the cost of the bond based on the number of kids playing sports. This is an example again of comparing apples and oranges as the number of people who use this park will far exceed the 1,220 playing sports.
Union will see a positive economic impact from this sales tax. The construction of the park will create jobs, and city revenues will benefit from the ability to host tournaments which will bring in out-of-town dollars.
Mr. Karius also states that the park will have only 50 parking spaces. The conceptual drawing shows 450. While the design could change somewhat, there certainly will be ample parking available.
Mr. Karius advocates building a YMCA. The YMCA website states, “Because Y’s are as unique as the communities we serve, we must carefully consider specific neighborhood needs when assessing whether a new YMCA facility is viable. If you are part of a neighborhood group or community that wants to start a Y, you should contact your nearest YMCA. No new, independent YMCAs are currently being chartered; however, your nearby Y may be interested in reviewing with you the potential for a branch YMCA operation.”
Based on that statement, do you think the Four Rivers Area YMCA would want to build a new facility in Union?
Finally, Mr. Karius states he would like to see a year-round facility that can be used by all ages. I submit that, with your yes vote on June 5, we will have one.
Jeffrey W. Watson
Union Wildcats Junior