To the Editor:
As a city of McHenry resident who is a homeowner older than 70 whose primary income is Social Security, I would like to offer some further thoughts on the upcoming McHenry Rec Center referendum.
To start, this proposal is not to build a second Rec Center. This proposal is an effort to complete the construction of what were parts of the original design for this facility. Having a gymnasium with two basketball courts and a walking track will provide space for many more recreational and fitness activities for all residents. Having a full-size competitive lap pool and warm water therapeutic pool will provide a proper place for the Marlins Swim Team to compete, a place for water aerobics (a great option for seniors), and a place for families who want to swim in the winter months.
Those who feel that membership fees should be raised to cover the cost of building such a facility probably have not put a pencil to what those fees would have to be in order to cover the cost of providing such facilities. Very few individuals or families would be willing or able to pay such high fees. As for corporate sponsors, getting those is easier said than done.
If we make a decision on this project based strictly on how many use this facility, we also should think about how many more would or could benefit from this and all of the other McHenry Parks and Recreation facilities and programs currently offered. Because the majority does not use these now, should they also be eliminated to save money?
I don’t like the idea of paying more taxes any more than my neighbors, but I do like the idea of McHenry having top-quality facilities and programs that will continue to provide multiple options for health, fitness and recreation for all ages, now and into the future of our community.