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By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes
There will be no change to the field usage rates at Keizer Little League Park for 2018.
Keizer Little League President Brad Arnsmeier withdrew a request for an across-the-board $10 increase to the field rates via email before the Keizer City Council was slated to take up the issue at its meeting Tuesday, Jan. 16.
“After much consideration and discussion among the members of our board we feel that it is not the time to ask for an increase in fees,” Arnsmeier wrote in a message to City Manager Chris Eppley. “We are trying to be sensitive to other organizations in Keizer that also use the fields and recognize that better communication would lead to a better understanding of why the complex needs additional funds for the fields.”
Arnsmeier said KLL would “be mindful to include other stakeholders in the process when we approach the city about a change.”
Members of the city council talked with representatives of KLL and McNary Youth Baseball about the proposed fee increase at a council meeting in December, but the discussion quickly devolved as MYP leadership protested the increase in field rates.
The council cut the talks short and requested more budget information from both KLL and MYB before proceeding with an approval of the rates.
At the time, KLL had submitted a list of expenses associated with the park, but the only revenues it listed were fees collected from MYB.
Before the meeting last week, MYB leaders had submitted a detailed budget including income and expenses for most of the past two years. It had a surplus of a little more than $2,000 as of September 2017.
KLL had not submitted further budget details that were included in the packet presented to members of the council before the meeting. MYB sent representatives to last week’s meeting of the council, but KLL did not.
The council approved maintaining the 2017 field usage rates unanimously.
Mayor Cathy Clark said she would still like to see the revenues and expenses from KLL in preparation for approving the field rates next year.
“I want to make sure we have an accounting of the volunteer hours and in-kind donations. Some people don’t want it recorded, but we need to know what actually gets invested,” Clark said.
Councilor Bruce Anderson thanked the MYB leadership for the submission of their budget and implored KLL to do the same without mentioning the group by name.
“The community needs to know what it takes to run this complex,” Anderson said.