Guest editorial: Keep North Summit kids in the game by supporting Proposition 6
North Summit Recreation director
On Nov. 5, the residents of North Summit Recreation Special Service District will decide the fate of youth recreational sports in the North Summit area. Proposition 6 would provide an ongoing funding source for North Summit Rec so it can continue to offer fun, healthy, community-driven recreational youth sports programs. If Proposition 6 fails, these programs will cease to exist beginning in 2021.
Not long ago there were no easily accessible organized recreational sports options for kids in North Summit and the surrounding areas. If kids wanted to play little league baseball or rec soccer, parents had to drive 30 minutes or more to an urban community.
Ten years ago, Summit County took the initiative to provide startup funding for three Recreation Special Service Districts — South Summit, Snyderville Basin and North Summit. Since then, South Summit and Snyderville Basin have found other means of funding for their recreational programs and facilities, including property taxes, school district general funds and reasonably priced program fees.
In order to continue at its current level of operations, without the county’s startup funding, and maintain reasonably priced program fees, North Summit Rec needs a consistent, long-term source of funding. If Proposition 6 passes, the funding from a new nominal property tax ($0.000104) will provide enough funding for North Summit Rec to continue offering quality youth recreational sports programs for years to come.
For the past seven years, I have had the pleasure of overseeing the North Summit Rec youth programs. I have seen first-hand the positive impact that youth sports programs have on kids and on our community.
North Summit Rec offers a variety of recreational sports for kids ages 3-15, including soccer, flag football, pee-wee football, basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball, ATV safety courses, archery classes and summer camps.
It’s well documented that participation in sports helps kids learn valuable lessons. Kids learn how to be considerate winners and how to handle a loss. They learn about sportsmanship and how to support one another both on and off the field. These positive character-building lessons are carried with them throughout their lives.
Additionally, participation in youth sports keep kids active, a key driver in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and good mental health. As a parent, I know we all strive to keep our kids healthy and happy. As North Summit Rec director, I’ve watched kids increase their stamina, build speed, agility, and strength and boost their self-confidence. At the end the season, kids are fitter and mentally stronger.
The benefits of North Summit Rec youth sports programs go beyond the kids — they resonate throughout the community as well. Grandparents, parents, friends, teachers and neighbors come together to cheer on the kids. This shared experience builds stronger relationships and a more vibrant local community.
North Summit Rec is the only entity that provides local recreational youth sports to kids in our area. These programs build a sense of camaraderie that will disappear from our community if North Summit Rec isn’t afforded a new consistent source of revenue.
Before casting your vote on Proposition 6, I hope you’ll consider the overall positive impact that youth recreational sports programs have on our entire community.
Let’s keep our kids and our community in the game.
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