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Healing the community

Posted: January 31, 2012 10:59 a.m.
Updated: February 1, 2012 5:00 a.m.

County Councilman Stephen Smoak is to be commended for his comments, on recreation facilities, at the Jan. 24th council meeting. Based on what he and the chairman of council said, I believe Councilman Smoak understands both the recreational and economic needs of the community. I believe that the members of the County Council Recreation Committee will also support a cooperative effort with the City of Camden to provide new and improved recreation facilities.

We have become a community divided by controversy over what to do about recreation facilities. We very much need a plan to move forward to provide the desired facilities and to heal the division in our community. I believe the majority of folks actually want the same things. It is just a matter of how to make it all happen while making the best use of our resources.

The City of Camden got out of the public recreation business a few years ago because of financial constraints. The current city leaders have recognized the need to make recreation facilities a priority again and have developed a new source of revenue to support improvements. A return to a cooperative effort between the city and the county, to provide improved public recreation facilities, is very much in the best interest of all citizens. Camden residents pay a large portion of taxes collected by the county and need to recognize the need for cooperation between the city and the county in the Camden community. Competition between the city and the county to provide any major service is not in anyone’s best interest.

As the effort moves forward it is of great importance that planning involve impartial experts that understand recreation facilities planning and financing. We need a Danny Jones and a Tom Linton to consult on the plans and only those who know S.C. recreation history will understand what that means.


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