PTC Rec makes best of budget cuts
In-house work, volunteers filling the gaps
With about $1 million in recreation cuts since 2009, Peachtree City has had to do more with less.
The recreation department’s maintenance crews is down from 16 to eight people. And key maintenance projects have been deferred and will have to be addressed in the coming year, Leisure Services Director Randy Gaddo told the City Council last week at its annual retreat.
The good news is that the department is using its in-house capabilities to do more than before, such as the interior re-painting of the entire Gathering Place, Gaddo said. Just that one effort saved $4,000.
Under the deferred maintenance topic, the city has needed to replace the fencing at the Kedron pools at a cost of $25,000, but this year that project was delayed again and repairs were done in-house.
The city is also facing a significant bill to repair damage done by winter storms to the city’s various tennis courts. The city has 12 such courts and it costs $2,500 each for the necessary repairs.
Also, the city’s premier play facility, the All Children’s Playground, is in need of repairs to its special rubberized surface, Gaddo said. That will cost an estimated $50,000, and the city’s other playgrounds need attention too as they have not been upgraded in recent years as the city had become accustomed to doing in the past.
The city is also needing to replace the irrigation equipment at the Baseball and Soccer Complex, as the existing equipment is so outdated it’s becoming hard to find parts, Gaddo said.
Also at the sports fields around town, a significant cost is looming as Coca-Cola is ending its scoreboard program. That leaves the city having to foot the bill to have them repaired or replaced, at a cost of $3,500 each.
The city is currently using some 30 such scoreboards, half of which are 15 years old or older, Gaddo said.
In a bid to reduce maintenance problems with water fountains, the city is looking at purchasing newer models that don’t clog up, but the catch is they cost about $2,500 each, Gaddo said.
The department also has turned to volunteers more to host special events, whereas in previous years the staffing was sufficient to cover them, Gaddo said. The department hosts more than 15 such special events throughout the year, the largest being the city’s annual July 4 celebration.
The department already uses a host of volunteers at the city library, and those helpers have been crucial in keeping the day to day operations going, Gaddo said.