I am not a member of the trail riders. However, I am all for recreation.
The last four words in the Dixon Park District’s mission statement are “park and recreation system.” However, when dealing with them, all things remaining the same, natural resources trump recreational opportunities.
Recreation provided by Dixon’s Park District is a very short list.
One mistake made by the trail riders was “assuming” the thousands they raised would go anywhere other than the Park District’s general fund. Dixon’s taxpayers also assume their taxes come back to them through recreation; it does not.
It was stated that, “The trail itself was created for non-motorized vehicles in mind.” These types of vehicles did not exist when this “MULTI-USE” trail was established and could not have been considered or included.
It was pointed out that of 75 trail riders permits issued, most are out of district (city limits), meaning they have no rights or voice, but keep the money coming.
We have seen money extortion for their general fund for years with our dog park and volunteer youth programs.
In 1907, the city of Dixon appointed commissioners to oversee parks. In 1916, an ordinance passed creating a park board. In 1934, the parks were split from the city through a referendum, a mistake that needs corrected.
Times have changed with subdivisions and our population moving outside the city limits. Other than continually purchasing unneeded land and eliminating most recreation, Dixon’s Park District has not.
Dixon Park District should voluntarily dissolve and be reformed using school boundaries with a new board, one that actually manages the parks, representing everyone, with fresh revenue, ideas, direction and new focus on serving all taxpayers while also providing recreation.
Or if need be, taxpayers could pass another referendum and do it themselves.