Park District plans referendum in November to take action on community priorities
BLOOMINGDALE, Ill. – August 31, 2016 – In opinion research conducted by the Bloomingdale Park District this summer, Bloomingdale residents identified three park district capital assets as the highest priorities for repair and improvement: Springfield Park ballfields and wetlands, The Oasis Water Park and the Johnston Recreation Center. Complete press release Fact Sheet
Join the Bloomingdale Park District for a series of open houses at the Johnston Recreation Center in advance of the November 8 referendum. Open House attendees have the opportunity to learn more about the projects, ask questions and meet Park District board members and staff.Open House Schedule
Frequently Asked QuestionsQ: What will the money be used for?
A: The bond money would be committed to three projects:
- Improving the Springfield Park ballfields to prevent widespread flooding of fields and nearby paths. Restoring the shorelines of the Springfield Park wetlands to address non-native, invasive species and improve stormwater management.
- Renovating the Johnston Recreation Center to include committed space for active older adult programming, improved early childhood/preschool space, and enhanced security throughout.
- Updating recreation features at the Oasis Water Park such as the splash pad, lily pads, fence ropes, etc.
The Park District is asking voters for the funds to cover necessary repairs and improvements to existing facilities that were most requested by residents, the costs of which exceed the Park District’s operating budget.
Q. Why is the Park District asking residents for this referendum?
A. We are seeking these funds because we believe it is important to protect the investments we’ve made in the community, and the cost of these repairs and improvements exceeds the Park District’s operating budget.
Because we knew these projects would need to be addressed, the Park District has planned for and has saved $1 million over the past decade through our disciplined, conservative approach to fiscal management to address these projects—but those savings have proven to be insufficient to accomplish all of the work actually needed to meet community expectations.
Bloomingdale Park District is recognized by the National Recreation & Park Association (NRPA), the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) and Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services for its outstanding record of fiscal management.
- The National Recreation and Park Association named us a gold medal agency for our excellence in long-range planning and fiscal resource management.
- We have earned a certificate of achievement for excellence in financial reporting by the GFOA for each of the past the past five years.
- We maintain a AA bond rating with Standard & Poor’s.
Q: What is the tax impact if voters approve the referendum?
A: The referendum would impart a temporary tax increase for Bloomingdale Park District homeowners. The approximate cost to the owner of a $246,500 home (the median Bloomingdale home value) would be $5.49 a month, or $65.82 per year. If your home value is less, the tax would be less, and if it is more, the tax would be more. Those with homestead or senior exemptions will pay less than those without exemptions. The bond issue would be for 20 years.
Q: When would these projects be built?
A: The Park District would issue the bond debt at once and construction would start as soon as possible, though not all projects would be started at the same time.
Q: How did the Park District choose these three projects?
A: We chose these projects based on a deliberate and thorough process we’ve conducted over the past six years.
Here is a summary:
- Conducted a needs assessment in 2010
- Participated in a 2013 strategic planning process, which included a capital asset replacement plan
- Held community discussion groups in July 2016
- Conducted a district-wide survey in July and August 2016
Residents identified these three projects as their highest priority for repair and maintenance. They reflect the top needs of our community.
The referendum would impart a temporary tax increase for Bloomingdale Park District homeowners. The approximate cost to the owner of a $246,500 home (the median Bloomingdale home value) would be $5.49 a month, or $65.82 per year. If your home value is less, the tax would be less, and if it is more, the tax would be more.
The Park District first identified several facilities in need of improvement during a 2010 needs assessment. Following a strategic planning process in 2013 that included a capital asset replacement plan, it was determined that the necessary repairs fell outside of the Park District’s annual operating budget. Working closely with District residents, the Park District prioritized the projects through community discussion groups and a district-wide survey conducted in July and August 2016.
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