City leaders showed disrespect for parks

City leaders showed disrespect for parks

On May 22 the Ashland Budget Committee expressed disappointment that the Parks Commission waited too long to ask for traditional full funding for parks. However, responsibility for faulty communications rests squarely with the mayor, City Council and administration.

The truth: Parks commissioners and many citizens have followed this matter closely since the November 2012 meeting with city officials, providing history and legal background and recommending a community discussion of options.

Overturning more than a century of the parks funding method deserved broad community examination. Carol Voisin, Rich Rosenthal and Dennis Slattery were the only members of the council who put in any real time examining this issue with citizens and parks commissioners.

In spite of best citizen efforts, Mayor Stromberg, Dave Kanner, the finance director and a majority of the City Council set about raiding the parks ending fund balance with no consideration of alternatives until it was "too late to change the budget." This is the real season for Budget Committee confusion of May 22 — and the Parks Commission got criticized.

If asked, Ashland's many bright, engaged residents could have offered significant help in identifying solutions for the city's overall revenue needs. The lack of respect for Ashland parks history and the council's poor leadership are appalling. These factors allowed the administration's overreach.

Karen Smith


Rain prevented Memorial Day flags

Memorial Day is one of the major holidays that the Ashland Kiwanis club places flags around town for subscribers. This is traditionally one of our most important flag days.

This year the weather did not cooperate and we were not able to place the flags. When our flags get wet, there is not a quick way to dry them before they are returned to their shelter. We wanted you to know what happened because we know that our Ashland residents and visiting tourists expect to see the flags waving in the breeze.

Ron Parker, president

Ashland Kiwanis Club