The River Forest Park District is seeking input and comments regarding the referendum for a new recreation center. As one of the premier organizations in the world when it comes to youth sports, Little League Baseball has a mission statement that includes assisting youths in developing the qualities of citizenship, discipline, teamwork and physical well-being.
While Little League focuses on this development through its baseball program, it is River Forest Little League Baseball & Softball’s position that any increase in youth sports and activities and the addition or improvement of facilities for youth sports and activities should receive strong consideration. The question is a matter of need and affordability.
As one of the many River Forest organizations maneuvering and often pleading for facility space, and after reviewing the park district board’s proposal for the recreation center, the need for this facility is real. This facility will benefit River Forest children, as well as River Forest teenagers, college-age students, young adults, adults and seniors.
The matter of affordability is not as clear. While the recreation center will benefit River Forest for years and potentially generations, the reality of the current economy cannot be ignored. If the referendum is not passed, the park district will retire its current bond and real estate taxes benefiting the park district will be reduced (estimates are $119 to $150 per average household).
If the referendum is passed, the park district will replace the retiring bond with the new bond, and real estate taxes benefiting the park district will not be reduced. The matter of operational costs has been addressed by the park district board, but does need consideration.
River Forest Little League Baseball & Softball does support the increase in youth sports and activities, and the addition or improvement of facilities for youth sports and activities.
River Forest Little League Baseball & Softball does believe there is a need for the park district recreation center. The question of affordability will be left to the residents of River Forest.
President, River Forest
Youth Baseball & Softball