The beach house at Doctor's Park was
locked this summer. There are no longer lifeguards on
Milwaukee County beaches. Pools were closed early last
summer. Grass next summer will only be cut every two weeks,
guaranteeing it will be overgrown between cuttings.
Our once proud parks system has
seen dramatic cuts over the years, but the past two budgets have
been the worst for our parks. Politicians masquerading as
reformers have gutted our parks system and have shelved plans to
develop other parks. None of this is necessary.
During my time on the County board, I
created four new parks and replaced five unsafe playgrounds. My
work on the Kohl Park master plan earned me the Park People's
Teschner award for excellence in public park planning.
Fiscal problems are being used as
an excuse for not furthering plans to develop, maintain, and improve
County infrastructure. However, interest rates have been at an all
time low. We will likely
not see rates this low again for a generation. Like a 15-year mortgage, the bonds which are issued yearly by the County are
paid back over time. As the economy improves, earnings on
County investments improves and sales tax revenues rise.
Today's fiscal woes are being used as an excuse to gut our parks.
The cuts to our County park system
have gotten attention from the media. Click on the links
below to see what they're saying:
Public Radio, November 9
Park System Suffers
cuts have hit the
park system in Milwaukee, Wis., especially hard. Long considered
among the nation's finest, supporters now fear for its future. Bob
Bach of member station WUWM reports.
Journal-Sentinel, September 14
parks need inventive solutions
cities would kill to have even one park designed by Frederick Law
Olmsted, the visionary founder of landscape architecture in
America. Milwaukee has three: Lake, Washington and Riverside. But
that legacy is threatened by disrepair and an uncertain funding
Gary Ohm, Master Plumber, Milwaukee County
Parks Dept Master Plumber speaks out on decay of parks and lack
closing buildings because we're told there's no money for heating
systems. We're draining the buildings down (to winterize
them). But when you do that to a building, the paint peels and
interiors can be damaged by the frost. Normally maintenance
workers check on buildings but now if a heating system goes down,
there's nobody to check for further damage. I couldn't keep
up on my projects in the past when we were down (had cut) three
people, but now they cut another one. I haven't seen
(Supervisor) McDonald do anything. He's just a yes