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Trustees address residents concern over new park hours

By Donna Smith-Rovan/ correspondent Published: December 13, 2012
vote 126
Jackson's North Park will stictly enforce the new park hours. Hours have changed as a result of the failed levy.

 Jackson Township trustees met Tuesday and addressed the new hours that will be enforced in the township’s parks.

Because the levy known as Issue 29 did not pass, the parks department recently put up signs in all parks to let residents know that they will be closed from dusk to dawn. The new hours will be strictly enforced by the Jackson Township Police Department.

Also, all lights in the township’s parks will also be turned off at dusk, so walking paths will not be illuminated after dark. The department will save approximately $500 a month just by turning off the lights after dusk.

When asked if Jackson Township residents would be able to walk in the park after dark, trustee President James Walters answered by saying, "People are not allowed to walk in the parks after it gets dark because the parks now close at dusk."

The changes in park hours are a direct response to the Issue 29 failing on Nov. 6. Trustees said in an October public meeting that there would be drastic changes in the department if the levy did not pass. Fiscal Officer Randy Gonzalez said it would lose more than $1 million in funding from the state government.  

Trustees are still working on the parks budget, as they know there will be more changes. Trustee John Pizzino said at last month's meeting that they will put a stand alone park levy on the next ballot.

"We will likely do a five-year levy," said Walters.

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