Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Disclaimer

The Disclaimer

My issues with the “Youth Sports” Program are not the need and value of Youth Sports Programs but the Management and Cost of the programs. Large taxpayer expenditure goes to one private organization with a narrow recreation focus with higher then average costs. I don’t see a financial statement or accounting of these funds on the Web Site. While Adult, Family and other Forks Township Youth Programs not only go un-funded and do not have the same privileges to use Forks Townships Public Recreation Facilities, Something needs to be said.

Why should the Tax Payers pay for your kids Soccer Tournament?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Recreation the Sacred Cow

Recreation is the Sacred Cow in Forks Township. If you question the 10’s of Thousands of Tax Dollars that are used to fund a few Youth Sports you are said to hate Children. This tactic has worked for 20 years as Money was funneled away from infrastructure projects and into Recreation. The Recreation Center that was built for about 10 million dollars. It was built mostly for the use of Don Millers Basketball league. At the same time the Police Department was being shuffled around to a building with a leaky roof and a mold problem.

The Recreation Committee Forks Township Youth Sports with the help of there friends on the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors get what they want when they want it. A few years ago when the Temp was in the high 90’s an emergency $160,000.00 was spent on all new Air Conditioning. Just think Forks Township has been stumbling through installing a Stop light at a dangerous intersection for 5 years. Yet without a thought relitivly new Air Conditioning was scrapped without a concern for costs.

I have a good working knowledge of Zoning and Building codes. You don’t need to look far into our Recreation Facilities and Parks to find deficiencies in Parking, Lighting and Emergency Access. It appears that some of our newer facilities are out of compliance with the America with Disability Act requirements.

Most residents have little understanding of the recreation department. Ask a question you won’t get an answer. Try to decipher the budget good luck. I use the park I see the mostly unused facilities. To the best of my knowledge I am going to explain what I know.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

This is why I write

I have been operating my Business since 1985. We were welcomed into this small community by Township Officials who were thrilled to have another business join an already diverse Business Community.

Jump ahead 10 years and Forks Township has changed drastically. The new residents moved in and forced changes to build a Bedroom Community in there image. They targeted the smells and noises of Farms. Since they worked out of the area they opposed the expansion of the Business Community. The transplants formed citizens groups and went after generations old family business’s like Braden’s Airport. Eventually they citizens groups found there way to seats on the Planning Committee, Board of Supervisors. From these seats they made zoning changes that made it easier for Builders to acquire and develop farm land. Business was over regulated to a point that Business development virtually stopped at the Forks Township Palmer Township Border. While Palmer Township Thrived on the increased tax revenue from mostly full Industrial Parks while Forks Township Industrial areas remain empty.

The biggest hit by all these fees and regulation was to the small independent Business’s that dotted Sullivan Trail. Many of them were overregulated out of business. The new Business’s that have opened on Sullivan Trail have done so at the cost of 10’s of thousands of Dollars in extra costs. Meeting after meeting to address changes demanded by Planners. The costs to open a small business in Forks Township are higher then profits that can be generated. Of the few that try most fail.

For example the New Weiss Market. After the Weiss Developers had the property returned to its original zoning a few citizens raised enough money to hire one of the most expensive lawyers in the valley to stop the project. This citizens group held off the building of Weiss for 2 more years as court decisions against the Citizens group were appealed and appealed. My estimates is Weiss spent $200,000.00 defending there right to build a Grocery Store on there own property.

My Battle to expand my business is legendary It has been written about and been in and out of the Press for 10 years. This has been an ongoing battle between our business and Township Officials. Officials who have prevented us from using our own Property to grow our business. Over the years Forks Township Officials have made several attempts to confiscate our property or change the zoning to prevent future expansion of our property.

If you read Press accounts or Official Forks Township records of my project a few names will pop up. What I was told years ago is a Recreation committee member and Supervisor felt our property needed to generate more taxable income then we produce.

Recreation is King in Forks Township. However what is passed off as Recreation doesn’t meet the definition. Trying to build a Sports Dynasty with Children is unconscionable but you don’t have to look deep into our youth programs to see competition is the word not Recreation