PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA

Letters

Vandalism at community church

By April 2, 2012

EDITOR: As the community of Pollock Pines knows, we still do not have a community park for our children, our seniors, our anybody. I salute the efforts (and product) of the recent Parks & Trails Master Plan, approved this past week by the Board of Supervisors and I am pleased that Pollock Pines has received some priority items. Still no money to do anything, but nice to know that when there is, we will have a couple of No. 1 tickets in the soup line.

As one answer to our children having no place to play, our Pollock Pines Community Church spent years collecting money to build a playground on their grounds, open to ALL children. It has only been opened a few months and the word has traveled; our children have someplace safe to play. It certainly is not of the magnitude designed by so many of us during three community meetings six years ago, but it serves the purpose for at least one group of our demographics, the kids. What makes it particularly significant is that this one group of people (the good church folk) cared enough about all of the children of Pollock Pines to raise the money themselves and then get the park built, asking for no help from anyone outside of themselves. Generosity almost beyond today’s economical imagination.

So how do we begin to fathom the kind of vandalism that the playground has suffered in so little time? Several of the heavy duty plastic play structures in the front area have been damaged beyond repair. Gates have been meddled with and broken. If your readers have any knowledge of how expensive playground equipment is and the issues involved with child safety in the building codes for playgrounds, they know these are not pesky little problems. They cause financial thrombosis and at the same time create a question of safety. After all, who the heck is hanging out around a playground in the back of a church at night? At issue will also be the safety and security of our larger community playground when it is built. How do other communities provide security for their special recreation areas?

Which brings me to the other part of this … the issue of security and surveillance in an unincorporated community in our county. We are blessed to have many law enforcement people, both active and retired, living in our beautiful community. But what can we do to better protect ourselves in the absence of a 24/7 patrol? I’d be interested in knowing what other communities are doing, either from our Sheriff (whom we love, by the way), or Chief Nielsen, or some community folks who have put programs together to help thwart this kind of senseless and incredibly selfish “play.” People can either respond to this letter publicly, or email us at [email protected]

JEANNE HARPER

Executive Director, Community Economic Development Association of Pollock Pines

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