Monday, May 01, 2006

Letter on Tennis

I received this letter on the tennis situation and post it here for your information and comments. The only changes are some minor spelling corrections.

Dear Editor,

As an individual who has promoted tennis since 1993, I appreciate your work in identifying the history regarding efforts to improve tennis in San Angelo. However, I would like to add two points that support the need for improvements. A report distributed in Feb. 2001 by Carter-Burgess, a consulting firm hired by the City at a cost of $92,000, ranked 33 activities that needed improvement in San Angelo, based on surveys and national standards. The top five HIGH priority items include (1) playground/playground equipment (2) restrooms (3) picnic shelters/pavilions (4) hike/bike trails (5) lighted tennis courts (6) lighted baseball fields (7) lighted outdoor baseball fields (8) open spaces (9) natural areas (10) lighted softball fields.

A second consultant hired by the City at a cost of $10,000, MHS Planning & Design, prepared a "Needs Analysis For Sports Facilities For the City of San Angelo." The first paragraph of the "Conclusions & Recommendations" area states: "Based on the needs assessment, interviews, standards and the existing sports facilities in San Angelo, there are sufficient game fields for baseball, youth softball, hockey, and soccer. There are shortages in tennis courts and adult softball fields. The consultant also recommended acquiring 8 acres for tennis courts at at market value, plus construct a 14-court tennis center with a Pro Shop.

Also, I'd like to make a correction. I did not resign from the Recreation Advisory Board in my fourth year due to the situation with the direction of the tennis complex. I was asked to resign by the mayor, or my name would have been placed on the agenda requesting my removal. I met the deadline to resign, but my name was placed on the agenda to remove me. Before the council meeting, a line was drawn through the agenda item.

It's been several months since I resigned, and the mayor and I have spoken on several occasions. I choose to work with the mayor in trying to find a way to reach the goal to improve tennis for ALL ages in San Angelo, especially for families who cannot afford the private clubs.

Your efforts are commendable. Thank you very much.

--Patsy Rainwater-Maddux

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