In October, Moravia Town Supervisor Baxter went before the Moravia school board calling for action regarding the summer recreation program. Most recently the program was hosted at the Fillmore Glen State Park and offers around 200 children an opportunity to attend an educational, outdoor camp at little to no cost to their parents. The program provided wholesome summer kid activity that transcends economic barriers that many face in our area, in addition, to strategically locating the youth of our community at the location where the CNY food bank provides free summer time meals on a daily basis. It was outlined in October in an article published by The Citizen that the program, which annually costs $40,000 to run, was causing the town of Moravia to lose money. Assuming each of the 200 children being served by the program attended all six weeks of camp, the per child cost is approximately $35.
At the Nov. 28 town board meeting, Supervisor Baxter opened the floor to the general public in attendance before the pre-written resolution was voted on by the town board. Many local community members spoke to the history of the program, the life skills such as swimming they learned as well as the many other positive impacts the program has had on them, their children and the community of Moravia as whole, and they pleaded with the board that they consider and exhaust all options available to maintain the program before making a decision. The show of community support for the Moravia summer rec program at the town board meeting was very compelling, unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to sway the town’s resolution to no longer administer the summer recreation program.
I’m shocked by the unanimous vote of the Moravia Town Board to potentially end something that has made our local community stand out in such a positive way. I believe the voice of our community was missed by the current elected administration.
As a parent, a town resident and a local business owner, I am unaware of any call for support to the local community to help keep this vital program in place or to restructure its current operating system. While I do understand the financial burden depicted, there have to be viable solutions available, had issues been brought to public light. It is disappointing there was so little transparency leading up to a decision that impacts so many children, our future community!