It was a packed house in the Rockford Park District's boardroom. As community members came to voice their support for the parks and in the end most got what they wanted.
Many people use the many services that are provided by the Rockford Park District. And those young and old spoke of their appreciation because the district does more then just provide recreation.
"Parks are where kids can have fun without being dragged down by people. Trying to have fun not trying to have someone shoot at them all the time. That would be where this life is just crazy," said a child park user.
"I would ask each one of the board members to support the proposal in front of them," said one meeting participant.
Based on issues of safety, maintenance, and programs, the board's final decision to approve a referendum was unanimous.
"It's very important right now in order to grow this district and maintain what we have we need to have these additional funds," said Laura Williamson, Rockford Park District Board President.
The referendum could mean a tax increase of about $67 on a $100,000 home. This could add $5 million a year to the $27 million budget.
Now that the referendum is officially on the ballot the board will meet to discuss how much the possible tax increase will be over the next three years.
If approved, homeowners in Rockford, Loves Park, New Millford and adjacent unincorporated areas of Cherry Valley would be affected by the tax increase.