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LETTER: Build a skatepark for less

Opposing the new skatepark isn't my intention ― opposing the budget is.

As a high school girl who's friends with "the skaters," I am delighted to know their many years of hard work have finally paid off. Ever since I was a middle-schooler, I've wanted a place for teenagers to hang out. Even though it isn't for all students, it's a step in the right direction.

Although a skatepark isn't a bad idea, the $110,000 over-budget park is not the way to go. The idea of hiring somebody from California to prolong the overall lifespan of the park is the right idea, and to do it right the first time is always better. However, you could do it right the first time without spending $420,000. A sufficient budget, even $75,000 less, would be enough to produce the desired outcome.

The city could better use the money ― repairs to the road, helping nonprofit organizations, a place for all teenagers to go, attempting to fix the homeless issues ― the list is endless. Simply cutting the budget for the skatepark would allow the city to expand its horizons even further.

I believe it's safe to say our city takes pride in our various parks ― playgrounds and memorials alike. To add another to the list would be more than beneficial to teenagers. But cutting the budget and adding more facilities for all students and teenagers to enjoy would overall better the community.

Hannah Baker

Cloquet

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