Usage fees in effect for Maplesville park

Published 5:21 pm Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Maplesville Community Park consists of ball fields, a playground area and buildings used for gatherings and events.

Maplesville Community Park consists of ball fields, a playground area and buildings used for sports and leisure gatherings.

Groups wanting to use Maplesville Community Park will have to comply with a new usage policy and associated fees.

On Aug. 12, the town council approved the Maplesville Pee Wee Athletics Board’s new park usage policy, created because of the board’s concerns about having to pay higher monthly power bills when groups use electricity at the park.

Shawn Reed, head of the board, said the usage fees would help alleviate the board’s “financial burden” of having to foot all of the electricity bills—some as much as $800 per month.

“We do pay all the bills at the park—power and water,” Reed said. “The town does fix any damages done there, but if the material cost is high, we pay for the materials and the town does the labor.”

Reed told the council Aug. 12 he wants everyone to enjoy the park and be able to use it, but the board was starting to have trouble paying bills after numerous groups outside of Maplesville Pee Wee Athletics would use the park with electricity.

Reed said the board asked for groups using the park to make a donation, but donations had not been high enough to help with large expenses like electricity each month.

“I have four football teams, three cheer squads and two softball teams using the park right now,” Reed said. “When our football, softball or baseball teams use (the fields), our power bill runs from $475–$750.”

Reed said the board contacted other park organizations to find out how much they charged for use.

“We called other places and $125 is what others charged just to use the field,” Reed said. “Some places were higher and this was just to use their fields.”

Groups wanting to use the park must call Town Clerk Sheila Haigler at Maplesville Town Hall to reserve the park for a certain date.

Groups using the park with electricity for lights or sound are required to pay a non-refundable fee of $125 per night.

“We feel that $125 is a small price to use the lights,” Reed said.

A $100 security deposit is required from those using the park without electricity.

“We do not want to charge for field [use],” Reed said. “We did want a $100 deposit made if you used the fields, but as long as there were no damages done, you would get that money back. You can pay by cash or check.”

Reed said the town cuts the grass at the park year-round and takes care of small maintenance issues such as changing light bulbs.

In return, the board donates $5,000 to the town every five years for a new lawn mower.

To reserve the park, call Town Clerk Sheila Haigler at (334) 366-4211.