Letters to the Editor

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SPRINKER: One man’s dream now a disaster

Letter by Richard E. Zierman, Spanaway on June 23, 2010 at 2:08 pm with 11 Comments »
June 24, 2010 9:19 am

Many years ago, Tom Cross dreamed of building a one-of-a-kind recreation facility in Pierce County for all to enjoy and marvel at. After many years of promoting and hard work, his dream was realized when the beautiful Sprinker Recreation Center was dedicated in the name of Harry Sprinker, a past Pierce County commissioner.

Today, Cross would be turning in his grave to know that the elected and appointed officials of Pierce County had let his dream complex fall into such disrepair that they (elected officials) were in the process of shutting the doors for lack of funding.

I doubt that very few people who reside in Pierce County have not been touched by Cross in one way or another, and to allow his dream of a lifetime to vanish would be the ultimate slap in the face of such a great guy.

Sprinker does not need a face-lift costing millions of taxpayer dollars. What it needs is some serious repair along with some tender, loving, meaningful care.

Some people need to start doing their job; the problems have been ignored way too long. The County Council needs to find the money to facilitate the needed repairs, and the Pierce County Parks and Recreation Department needs to educate its employees so they can operate the complicated systems that are required for an Olympic- class Ice arena.

(Zierman is a retired Pierce County facilities maintenance superintendent.)

Leave a comment Comments → 11
  1. Sumner401 says:

    Don’t blame the county, blame the “no taxes” crowd.

  2. Mr. Zierman, I love what you wrote here:
    “Sprinker does not need a face-lift costing millions of taxpayer dollars. What it needs is some serious repair along with some tender, loving, meaningful care.”
    And the County needs to get back all that money they spent on architects for a grandiose project that was not necessary.

  3. witchiwoman says:

    I don’t mind paying taxes to keep Sprinker going. My son and husband played many games of baseball at Sprinker, and we all loved the batting cages. I bet you could ask for volunteers to help, and would get them.

  4. Loren_Zimmerman says:

    Dick Zierman is “right on” with his comments and even more….his feelings and passion for the now time honored facility. Tom Cross and Harry Sprinker are icons in this area. Their legacies cannot be ignored or forgotten. Especially since County officials have seen fit to pump millions of dollars into establishing a new legacy for someone born in the 19th century that even local history doesnt recognize. That would be the legacy we have all been forced to pay for at the over priced Chambers Bay golf course.
    Our county officials are excellent at funding new projects that bring exposure but are terrible at maintaining existing facilities….. bringing no visibilty.

  5. Prioritize funding! Great letter. Our state has 10,000.00 to refinish Gregoires conference table(I was there in January it was already beautiful). Tax and spend politicians have to hit us taxpayers where it hurts to push the idea that higher taxes are the answer, versus intelligent, reasoned, rationed and prioritized spending. Every department should be charged with cutting costs and prioritizing spending. Same thing happens with the parks and schools. By “hitting you where it hurts” the tax and spend crowd can point the finger at all the people who want their government to spend our money responsibly for the cuts.

  6. tractorneighbor says:

    Your right on with your comments. The county council needs to decide how they want our parks to look. Are we going to let all of our beautiful parks go to rot? Parks are like roads, you have to take care of them!

  7. Sumner401 says:

    And that costs money.
    Like I say, don’t blame the county, blame the cake and eat it too, no taxes crowd.

  8. We know what Richard means when he says the county needs to find the money.He means to look once again in the taxpayer pockets.I think the up -keep and improvement cost should fall on the people who use the facilities.I live in a different part of the county and haven,t visited nor even seen those facilities.If the folk were really serious about wanting to keep Sprinkler open then they shouldn,t mind paying a fee to do so.But I have a feeling that they would prefer to have someone else pay the bill.

  9. Loren_Zimmerman says:

    This is just a short note to “sincere”. I find your comment far from sincere. I find it more uneducated. The reisdents of Pierce County (you AND I) have paid taxes over the years that have helped build Sprinker, helped staff Sprinker and to maintain Sprinker. Sprinker is an expensive asset that has been allowed to fall apart. They (pierce county government) have a responsibility to take care of their assests. It’s not normal to ask for new taxes to maintain old projects and assets. New taxes should be for new projects. Sprinker is NOT a new project. They are obligated to fix it and maintain it.
    I take great issue with “they would prefer to have someone else pay the bill”. I have used the services in the Sprinker facility for almost 30 years and I have paid for it. Users pay for ice skating…they pay to play tennis…they pay to take classes….they pay for room rentals. 150,000 people pay every year for the Sprinker services. So please dont think we are looking for a handout.
    And “sincere”….its not a Sprinkler. It’s named for Harry Sprinker.

  10. freakycougar12 says:

    Thanks for your comments Loren.

    I paid for using Sprinker while I lived and worked in another county. Everyone who uses the facility pays for using it.

    This year the Lakewood Winter Club paid $9000 to use the rink and community rooms for ONE 2 1/2 day weekend.

  11. Loren:Thanks for the corrections as I was unaware that the public was being charged for using the Sprinker facilities.So it looks like you are paying twice.Once for using the facilities and then again by your taxes.I for one don,t want my taxes raised to support something I do not use.What should be done is,raise the fees on the users and leave the taxes alone.But remember that any project started and finished will have maintenance cost. They seem to forget this fact until the project starts falling down.A good example is the King Dome in Seattle.

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