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04/26/2023 08:30 AM

Facilities Need a Renovation

I am growing weary of the vocal few spreading misinformation regarding the athletic facilities renovation in Region 4.

Just as your home may need a new roof after 30 years, our athletic facilities need a renovation. The last capital investment in our athletic facilities was in 1996. Furthermore, due to the increased participation in athletics, much of it driven by an increase in female athletes, we have been unable to give fields adequate rest and maintenance. Therefore, the proposed addition of two fields. We have to be Title IX compliant.

This is a bonded proposal, replacing a bond that is falling off. Thus, we should see little to no impact on taxes. If we do not approve this, we will be doing a pay as you go, repairing facilities, and being a line item on budgets. This will impact taxes.

The initial proposal, following the field use study, was for $16 million to do everything needed to properly update our facilities. Our Board of Education took a look at what needed to be done for safety and accessibility, arriving at our $9.9 million proposal.

Surrounding towns have already updated their facilities, making them more attractive to young families. We have had teams refuse to play on our fields as they deemed them unsafe. We need a robust, well-rounded population for growth in our towns, not simply being attractive to an aging population.

As a past member of our youth athletic boards and running sports programs for children with disabilities in our towns, I have been fighting the battle to improve our fields since 2011. My children have graduated high school and my family will not benefit directly, but my community will benefit!

Jodi Azzinaro