Parents concerned about future of four Portland community center - KPTV - FOX 12

Parents concerned about future of four Portland community centers

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Some parents in Portland are worried about the future of four community centers in Portland. 

Dawn Haecker moved to Portland last November and calls the Woodstock neighborhood home.

“We went for a walk here in the neighborhood just to see what was out there and the community center was actually one of our first stops,” Haecker said.

Just like that, she said the Woodstock Community Center became a second home.

“Since then, we’ve signed up for messy art, we’ve signed up for dance classes, I’ve gone to Zumba,” Haecker said. “My son is now involved in the preschool there.”

But a survey released by Portland Parks & Recreation lists the Woodstock Community Center as something it could possibly shut down.

The Sellwood Community Center, Fulton Community Center and Hillside Community Center are also listed. 

“We can’t afford a private preschool,” said Haecker. “There are other preschools that are less expensive, they’re farther away.”

A spokesperson for Portland Parks & Recreation said they’ve been directed to submit a budget reduced by 5 percent for the fiscal year 2018-19. He said 5 percent means more than $3 million

“It’s disappointing,” said Haecker. “It’s scary.”

“I don’t know where they would go,” said Kirsten Marshal, whose children attend an after-school program at Sellwood Community Center. “It would be a hardship for sure.”

The city spokesperson said they never want to make any cuts and there is no easy proposal on the list. 

“While the outdoor spaces are heavily used in this city so are the indoor spaces and a lot of those indoor spaces are community centers,” said Haecker. “They are a treasure to each and every neighborhood.”

No decisions will be made any time soon, according to the city. The results of the survey also doesn't guarantee any decisions. A spokesman said the survey is one of many public input opportunities that will be offered.

To see the survey and fill it out, click here.

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