Referendum would put an unfair burden on taxpayers

Opinion

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Thanks to Ms. Mary Shiffer for her One View ("Before voting on park referendum, consider how OP could think outside the box," March 9). I contacted Park District Director Mr. Gary Balling in January because I wanted to find out what my estimated increase to my taxes would be if the 25 cent referendum passed. Mr. Balling referred me to Mr. Kent Newton (Superintendent of Business Operations) for the park district. My tax would increase from $242 currently to approximately $604 (a 150 percent increase). The re-assessment in June 2005 of our homes may send that $604 allocation higher.

This 25 cent increase is the maximum under state law to request in a referendum and I think it is unfair for Mr. Balling to put that burden upon the taxpayers in Oak Park.

Mr. Balling was also quoted as stating that "a dog park may be on the horizon, and will be addressed after the referendum outcome in April" ("A fetching good time," March 9). The article also states that the park district permits dogs to frolic at Lindberg Park from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. If the park district would care to come to Lindberg Park on any day, unleashed dogs and their owners are here 7 days a week.

This park referendum is just the beginning. When it comes time to pay for the $20 million Public Works facility on South Blvd. or the Capping of the Ike in the future guess who is going to be obligated to pay?

Larry Armstrong
Oak Park

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