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Miller Park playground may get upgrade

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Equipment approximately 25 years old, some missing pieces can’t be replaced

John L. Moore
reporter@cknj.com

The Campbellsville City Council held a public hearing to discuss new playground equipment the city intends to purchase with a grant from the state’s Land and Water Conservation Fund if it were to receive it.

Cheri Bennett, who is handling the city’s grant application, handed out packets featuring playground designs, new park benches and more at last week’s hearing.

One of the playsets pictured would replace the park’s current equipment, which is “about 25 years old” and “missing pieces that cannot be replaced because they’re no longer manufactured,” she explained.

The “Summit,” from Play Mart Playgrounds in Somerset, would be suitable for kids age 5 to 12 and would be made up of 13 components, seven of which would be Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant. 

Another playset, “Nicole,” would address complaints parents have had for years about a lack of playground activities for younger children. It would be suitable for kids age 2 to 5 and contain eight components, four of which would be ADA compliant.

The proposed playground plan also budgets for five new picnic tables — three normal sized, one ADA compliant and one child-sized — and 10 new benches — six flat, four covered, as well as four new trash cans.

Council member Diane Ford-Benningfield raised the question of updating the picnic tables under the park’s pavilions to match, mentioning the possibility of Lowe’s making it one of its annual community service projects.

Kendra Glasscock, a parent in attendance, suggested asking businesses in the community to fund additional tables.

Play Mart Playgrounds would be the equipment provider, installer and servicer. Having Play Mart install the equipment would extend the warranty and keep the city from being held liable for issues related to its setup.

City crews would instead construct a new sidewalk from the park’s main parking lot to the playground, with a handicap ramp to make it ADA compliant.

The labor cost for the new sidewalk would come out to a little over $6,000, with the entire project costing $121,867. The conservation grant would cover half of that, and the city would cover the other half.

Everyone in attendance was offered a form and asked to indicate whether they agreed or disagreed with the playground proposal as it was presented, and what they would change if they disagreed.

Bennett said grant applications should be reviewed in July.

If Campbellsville is accepted, Mayor Brenda Allen hopes construction will commence this winter so the playground will be ready for public use by next spring.

 

Council hears first reading of budget

The City of Campbellsville held a special-called council meeting following the playground forum to hear the first reading of the budget for the fiscal year 2019-2020. The City is projected to break even at the end of the 2018-2019 fiscal year, with a slight chance of a 1-2% carryover.

The initial budget comes out to $12,158,000, which is down approximately $500,000 from last year due to grants.

Pension payments for city employees will increase by 12%, as mandated by state law. The budget for workman’s compensation has also increased by 12%. Liability, building and vehicle insurance costs are expected to increase by 10%.

Hauling and sanitation fees are expected to increase by 3.5%. The budget allows for a 2% increase in employee salaries, and city employee insurance and utility costs are not expected to increase this year.

The Alcoholic Beverage Control’s regulatory fee will remain at 6%, the same as last fiscal year.

Council member Jimmy Ewing requested a breakdown of higher-priced budget items to be presented to the Council before the second budget reading, which will take place Monday, June 3.