Playground fix among city projects
by Michael Langley
Apr 18, 2014 | 4527 views | 2 2 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A leg on one of the wooden playground structures at Hoyt Park shows signs of decay. A new playground for the park is one of the items on the Capital Improvement Project list for fiscal year 2014/15.  Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
A leg on one of the wooden playground structures at Hoyt Park shows signs of decay. A new playground for the park is one of the items on the Capital Improvement Project list for fiscal year 2014/15. Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
slideshow
The city council accepted the Capital Improvement Project to replace the playground equipment at Hoyt Park.  Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
The city council accepted the Capital Improvement Project to replace the playground equipment at Hoyt Park. Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
slideshow
The wooden footings of the play structures at Hoyt Park, 300 Third St., are being eaten away by weather, water and bugs so fast that the city will spend more than $300,000 to replace them next fiscal year.

Tuesday night the City Council accepted a plan to spend $1.48 million on eight projects around Tracy during a Capital Improvement Projects public workshop. The projects include additional money set aside from city Fund 301 — the only fund that can be used for any city project — to build a new animal shelter, paint the water tower at City Hall and replace the Hoyt Park structures.

Jenny Haruyama, city administrative services director, told the council that the projects recommended for Fund 301 money were carefully selected.

“This year, we had 44 projects that were brought forward. Only eight were recommended for funding, primarily due to the limited amount of funds that we have.” Haruyama said. “When you make the allocation considerations, we’re looking at balancing all of the community across the board and then again considering the future on investment, making sure those dollars are being invested wisely.”

Haruyama said replacing the play equipment at Hoyt Park was a necessity.

“The wood structure has deteriorated significantly and is now a safety hazard,” she said.

Dino Margaros, president of the Tracy City Center Association, and Anna Craig, owner of Mia Bella’s Boutique, 110 W. 10th St., asked the council members to consider spending some money to replace the ground lights meant to light up the trees around downtown. Many of the lights are out or broken.

Craig said the lights show off the restoration done years ago by the city.

“I believe that lighting is a huge reflection of who we are and how you feel. When you go into a downtown area and you see things lit up, it just makes you feel good,” Craig said. “As I look down the street, it just did not look appealing. It looks scary and dark.”

Margaros added that he would ask the TCCA board to offer $15,000 to help fund the project.

Mayor Brent Ives said he completely agreed that the city needed more lighting downtown and asked Haruyama what was possible. The administrative services director told him she was trying to find funding in the current budget to fix the lights now and would work with TCCA to fund replacement of the lights in the coming fiscal year.

Included in the written report prepared for the council were more than $128 million of unfunded projects. The two top projects not selected for the next fiscal year were a $300,000 purchase of infrastructure management software and a $7.8 million expansion of the public works facility. A dog park for south Tracy, a new 50-meter pool at Dr. Powers Park, repairs to the facilities at Tracy Municipal Airport and a $17 million public safety training facility were among the other projects not moved forward.

The council made no changes to the spending plans which will now be part of the overall city budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year, which begins July 1. The City Council will consider the entire budget at its first regular meeting in June.

• Contact Michael Ellis Langley at mlangley@tracypress.com or 830-4231.

 
Comments
(2)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
warthog69
|
April 23, 2014
What? A dog park for south Tracy there is already one at veterans park didn't you know? This park is overrun by inconsiderate dog owners that let there dogs run free and poo all over without picking it up. These dog owners are above any laws so why waste more money OH I forgot it's Tracy were talking about
victor_jm
|
April 23, 2014
Owning a dog isn't a human necessity, though propaganda has made this choice seem otherwise. From my experience, over 50 percent of dogs ought to be removed from their owners. As a taxpayer, I get--but don't agree with--the argument that I ought to pay taxes to educate the children of the community, though I have no children in the school system, and never will, but I don't endorse the coercion of having to pay taxes for a dog park. This is b.s.

Stop feeding the cows to the dogs.

If a dog needs a dog park, maybe we ought to stop selectively breeding them and manipulating their genes to our pathetic ends. Stop the breeding and the execution of these animals. Get a life.


We encourage readers to share online comments in this forum, but please keep them respectful and constructive. This is not a space for personal attacks, libelous statements, profanity or racist slurs. Comments that stray from the topic of the story or are found to contain abusive language are subject to removal at the Press’ discretion, and the writer responsible will be subject to being blocked from making further comments and have their past comments deleted. Readers may report inappropriate comments by e-mailing the editor at tpnews@tracypress.com.