Supporting the district's levy
- Keith Mays
- Sherwood Gazette - Opinion
This fall the City Council gave unanimous support of the Sherwood School District levy for more classrooms. In October the Council also gave unanimous support for the two Washington County tax levies, for Library services and public safety. It is my hope that when you vote, you consider doing the same.
As most of you have read by know, there were errors on the Sherwood City Council portion of the voter's ballot. As directed by the Secretary of State, Washington County election's office sent out new ballots for just the three City Council positions with a letter of explanation.
If you haven't already, please take the time to vote on both ballots by end of the day Tuesday, November 7. For your convenience, you can save a stamp (or this year two) and use the ballot drop box in the City Hall/Library parking lot in Old Town. Just drive counter-clockwise through the parking lot and you don't even have to leave your car.
Parks, ball fields and open space continue to be a high priority for the city. While we have done many projects in the past few years on city property or on Sherwood School District property, we know more is needed. To help with priorities and ensure we understand the needs/desires in the community, the Sherwood Parks board, city staff and consultants have worked hard to update the city's parks master plan. On October 17 the City Council adopted the document.
Assuming the school levy passes, this will be a valuable tool (as it is a guide, but not a directive) to help the school district have the right balance of sports fields/courts/etc. are built at the new elementary and middle schools. The School District will build these facilities at the schools, but I expect we will add them to our IGA and the city will maintain them like we do at the other schools so they can be used by the entire community. This will also help the Parks Board and City Council better determine (along with community input) how we complete Woodhaven Park and what land to look to buy for new parks.
If the Metro open spaces levy passes this month, (with Sherwood on the edge of the UGB) it is expected that we will benefit more than most communities with environmentally important land bought from willing sellers. The new parks master plan will help us prioritize the community's needs/desires for open spaces and trails. Without counting the Refuge, Sherwood continues to be ranked second in the Metro area with acres of open space per thousand residents (first is Portland - thanks to Forest Park).
The Sherwood YMCA is exploring the idea of expanding the facility. No timeline is in place, but I think this is exciting news. Any addition requires permission of the city - since it is a city facility. Anyone who has tried to sign up for a program or class lately knows more space is needed - including Child Watch.