Voters prepare for bond proposal - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Voters prepare for bond proposal

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FRANKENMUTH (WJRT) -

(08/06/12) - In Frankenmuth, voters will go to the polls to decide a proposal intended to give children a place to play sports.

City leaders want to build a new recreation center at Weiss and Jefferson. That's just south of the heart of downtown.

If that proposal passes, that means a new recreation center will be built on 38 acres of land just south of Heritage Park in Frankenmuth.

That building will cost more than $7 million, which will be spread out over the next 25 years.

Jill Purmen, who has lived in Frankenmuth all of her life, is against a recreation center in her town.

"I'm not too excited about it. I'm going to vote no because it's going to increase our taxes, which I'm not a big fan of, and I don't really want to pay more," she said.

If the bond is passed, that means it would cost the average taxpayer $45 a year on a $100,000 home.

Frankenmuth Youth Sports Association President Chris Rittmueller looks at the building as a major hub for the town.

"When you talk to the teenagers in this area, when you talk to the kids in this area, they ask for something to do besides just going to school. This is something where kids can come, seniors can come and recreate. It's a facility that we really look at. It can use what Frankenmuth does well, which is our tourism industry.

The project includes 12 soccer fields that can also be used for football and lacrosse and three baseball and softball fields.

Rittmueller says the indoor facility will host additional activities. That's why some don't mind the tax increase.

"It's got to come from somewhere. I'm all for it. If it increases my taxes and if it's good for our community, of course I'm for it. It will be a bonus for our community," said Michael Ribble.

Purmen still argues that the extra money shouldn't come out of their pocket.

"The economy is not the best, and now they want us to pay more in taxes. It just doesn't make sense to me," Purmen said.

If the bond is passed, city leaders will break ground in March of next year.

Rittmueller says so far he's already raised more than a $1 million and he will have more community fundraisers depending on the outcome.

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