WARRICK COUNTY, Ind. (WEHT)- Warrick County is paying a half million dollars to create a new park, but it is causing debate amongst county council members.
The ‘Visionary Park’ will be located near Vann and Libbert roads between the new Ohio Township Fire Department and the new Community Center.
“It is going to have a 13,000 square foot playground that is tailored to infants all the way to middle teens, and is handicapped accessible and an area for kids who may have autism,” says Chad Bennett, an Ohio Township Trustee.
Bennett says the playground will be next to a large splash park, along with trails around a lake that connect to the Warrick Trails system.
Council members votes to use $500,000 in leftover ARPA funds to help fund the park. The vote was close, with four people voting for it and three people voting against it. Councilman Ron Bacon says he likes the idea.
“It is not coming out of tax payer dollars, it is not coming out of park funds. It will be a good addition to the community and bring more people to Warrick County,” Bacon says.
Councilman Brad Overton voted against it. He thinks the half a million dollars should go towards maintaining the parks the county already has, such as Scales Lake and Friedman Park.
“I know Scales Lake, for one thing, is needing a new pool. They actually shut down the pool. So part of my thoughts are that we should use the funding to fix the things that are in disrepair,” Overton says,
The park is already being paid for by a $3 million Regional Economic and Acceleration Development Initiative (READI) grant, along with several other grants. Ohio Township still has to raise a million dollars through private donations, which Bennett says they are working on. Bennett hopes to have a ground breaking for the park this summer. Council members say Ohio Township must have all of the money first and have it in hand before they give them the $500,000.