Thursday, October 29, 2009

Parks to cut neighborhood community center budgets: I told you so, campers

If Parks Director Wilson's latest round of cuts to community & nature centers is adopted expect the parking lots at scenic Beaman Nature Center to remain empty more days of the week, more hours each day. We will just have to be satisfied with the splendor of an occasionally-used convention center.

Now that CM Ronnie Steine and the Mayor's office are turning the screws on Metro Parks Director Roy Wilson for running into a cash-flow bunker on the links, Mr. Wilson has responded by staying on his past script of planning community and nature center cuts when under budget duress:
Wilson submitted a plan to trim $463,000 from the Metro Parks & Recreation Department's budget ....

Under Wilson's proposal, operating hours at Davidson County's neighborhood community centers and nature centers would be trimmed, and seven recreation staff employees would be laid off as a result of the cuts.

Wilson's plan comes in addition to steps the board already took earlier this month to trim $386,000 from its budget.

As usual, neighborhood issues are taking a back seat to other budgetary needs. Do you think that there will be this much angst when proposed convention center construction runs over budget? Or might the pressure being brought to bear on Parks be another way of freeing up cash to soften the blow when the Mayor has to raid the General Fund to pay for shortfalls in building the $1 billion big box in downtown Nashville to suit the industry special interests?

If the Parks Board accepts these latest budget attacks on neighborhood services, watch for them to become permanent as pressure to build the convention center continues unabated in the Metro Council.

1 comment:

  1. How much cutting can they do? According to the Parks website(which is terribly out of date) Beaman Nature Center is only open 8hours per week.

    8 hours!!