March 3, 2014

News Release: Residents Come Together To Form Yes4Clayton Committee

Contact: Robyn Frankel 314-863-3373, rfrankel@frankelpr.com
OR  Ira Berkowitz 314-547-0014, imberk@inlink.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

RESIDENTS COME TOGETHER TO FORM YES4CLAYTON COMMITTEE TO CONTINUE QUALITY OF LIFE IN CLAYTON

March 3, 2014, Clayton, MO – To encourage voters in Clayton to approve four propositions on issues that are critically important to the future of the city, Clayton citizens formed the Yes4Clayton committee. This group of more than 15 community volunteers are working to gain passage of the four proposals on the Tuesday, April 8, 2014 ballot.

“These proposals will provide the funding to maintain the quality of life Clayton residents have come to expect,” said Yes4Clayton committee co-chair Ira Berkowitz.

The two bond issues would provide funding to re-do many of Clayton’s aging neighborhood streets, alleys and street lighting and replace and renovate the antiquated 53-year old Shaw Park ice rink facilities with a year-round, multi-use venue. In addition to a new high school regulation size ice rink that would extend the season from three months to four, the facility would be converted to a turf surface for cultural events, field sports and other activities the rest of the year. The outdoor space also would feature a translucent, open-air, pavilion to provide protection from rain and snow, and a new field house to support the tennis courts, ice rink and field sports.

“Our family has lived in Clayton for 23 years. Outdoor skating at Shaw Park has been one of the special charms of living in Clayton. The current facility is out-of-date and deteriorating. I support the proposed beautifully-designed, open-air new facility, which maintains the best features of the current structure, yet brings many new advantages including year-round opportunities for our community," said Dr. Stacey L. Smith, a Clayton resident who is a former ice dancing champion and Olympian.

The investment for the owner of a $500,000 home would be less than $20 a month, or $219 a year if both bond issues are approved.

If approved by voters, two ¼ cent sales taxes would help the City maintain current fire and EMS levels and continue economic development programs to retain and recruit businesses, keep Clayton competitive and sustain the City’s vitality. The additional ½ cent sales tax would mean a 25-cent increase on a $50 dinner bill.
These four proposals are the result of years of comprehensive planning that involved residents, business leaders and City officials. The City has reduced expenditures by more than $1 million a year and reduced staffing levels by ten positions, but limited revenue growth and rising expenditures continue to present a challenge to maintaining City service levels. The last bond issue for streets was more than 20 years ago, and the last sales tax increase was 16 years ago.

The Yes 4 Clayton committee is co-chaired by Ira Berkowitz and Robyn Frankel. More information about Yes4Clayton and volunteer opportunities is available at www.Yes4Clayton.com.

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