Empty Senior Centers Kept Open All Day…

flat panel displays

Interesting conversation the other day with someone who asked me why we have two senior centers in the city and why after 12:00 pm are they empty? Why no one else can use them after the hours that the seniors use them.  Why is there new exercising equipment that no one is using. Well I asked, the story goes like this council passed to get the equipment for the senior centers and from what this person told me they did not know that the seniors were going to be charged to use it. I guess the council thought that they would put in the equipment and the seniors would get to use it for free. Well because they are charged for it they are not using it so the equipment sits unused and the flat screen TV that are left on that no one is watching. I asked around and after 12:00 in the afternoon there is not a soul in the centers so why can’t the rest of us use them and why if they are not going to open them up for the rest of us then shut them down for the rest of the day. Why do we need to have both open at the same time five days a week? With the economic situation the way it is I do not see the need to have them opened five days a week all day long with supervisor at each location. Add to that a part-time event coordinator. Tell me what you think

 

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26 thoughts on “Empty Senior Centers Kept Open All Day…”

  1. No. I meant what I typed. What you are saying is completely inaccurate. Homeowners (including condos) that own and occupy their house DO NOT pay school operating taxes. They are exempt from them. The city of Dearborn Heights has 6 school districts. Crestwood, District 7, Westwood, Dearborn, Taylor and Wayne Westland. If your property is a rental or a second home (or a business), you cannot claim the homestead exemption and would be additionally responsible for paying school operating taxes. You would not pay more to the “city” because the house is a rental, second home, etc, you just pay the “school operating taxes” in addition to everything else.

    I hope that help. If you call the city, they have information on this issue. I’m pretty sure I got the information from assessors office. That is how I was educated on the subject.

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  2. did you mean to say unless you own a home you only pay school taxes? cause your statement said only people with rental, or second homes pay school taxes.
    Every home owner, or condo owner in this city pays school taxes. The school taxes vary from district to district. we have three in our city.
    however, your city taxes can very if it’s a rental property,
    cause you cant claim homestead, so you would pay more city taxes, which is separate from school taxes.

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  3. I agree with Donna I have been at the center center I am a volunteer and have been for over 2 years. I see more new seniors coming to the center now. They are retiring and looking for a place to go if the close the centers they won’t have a nice place to go. Why when there are cuts they pick on seniors? What has happened to the “Golden Years?”

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  4. now for the person who wanted to know about the parties at the senior centers. the people must enjoy themselves they kept coming back even thou they have to pay for the food……

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  5. when I first moved here as a child to Dearborn Township there was no schools no libraries, no rec centers no paved roads. How do you think we got them by the work and voting of these seniors that you now want to lay down and die.We have a great thing in this country called freedom. If you don’t like it here move . we also made this township a city . as an adult I have lived here for 47 years and have watch this city grow.

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  6. Just an FYI: you DO NOT pay school taxes unless you have a rental house or a second home or unless you’re in a couple of the school districts that have an extra millage. Do you really think you have a right to “question and scrutinize”? Absolutely. But, please don’t EVER say “I pay your salary”. Just saying!!! What makes this country great is that you have the right to your opinion and the freedom of speech (within limits), but should you demand things or complain about things that you don’t know anything about? NO! This is MY opinion.

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  7. It is tax payer money. it comes from federal grants, which is TAXPAYERS MONEY! So, yes we can comment on how this money is spent.
    As a tax payer we have a right question and scrutinize everything involving how tax payers money is spent.
    It doesn’t matter if its at the school, city,county, or federal
    level, we as taxpayers have the right to look at everything to see if waste, or fraud is lurking about.
    So, no one was criticizing what the seniors offer at the centers, it was the utilization of the facilities in progress
    that was being questioned. How much money is the general fund is contributed to the centers for example.
    Don’t tell me you make enough money selling quilts, and puzzles to pay the utilities.
    So, how many public funds have been used towards the senior centers versus other services offered by the parks and rec. dept.
    as far distribution for focus hope, and commodities, the senior centers are not the only facilities in cities that are distribution centers of these services. Churches, rec ctrs, libraries in other cities are used.
    of course your gonna have a big turn for the christmas
    party, it involves food! So, how much does each party goer pay? Just curious.

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  8. Do not tell me tell the seniors that go to these centers and said that they are empty and told me that I was trying to get on the good side of the seniors that is why I was not telling the truth about the centers or writing about it. As I said before I put up here that the money did not come from the council and that they got the money through fundraising I corrected the first post. I got the information about the council paying for the equipment from a council member. I found out the correct information from another council member. So now both sides have been heard on the issue and that is how it should be . In the end it does not matter because we all know the Mayor will never do anything to the centers.

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  9. donna48125 For the ones that complain about the seniors voting down things for the school. Tell the parents that have children to get off there rear end and get out to vote so the senior don’t win

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  10. Donna 48125 First I would like to straight out some facts the council does not have anything to do with the senior ctrs and the city didn’t pay anything for the excise equipment. It was paid for by our ctrs money and private donation .Some people do not fill that the ctrs our busy so I would like to tell you what we have going at the Eton ctr . We have 5 clubs,a group for dieters,chair excise2 groups of quilters,a singing group,upholster classes,grief counseling,a group that plays euchre,we have a group of men that play cards ever afternoon,some peope come in to play pool and ping pong and in the summer they play horse shoes,we have a puzzle going all the time anyone is welcome to sit down and work on it,once a week a nurse come for blood pressure checks(anyone in dbn hgts come come in for this)we have a computer room,we have hair cuts for the seniors,
    focus Hope give out food for low income seniors the ctrs are used to give out commodity food for any low income family in Dearborn Heights not just seniors the ctr is used for Meals on Wheels which delivers meals for home bound seniors,we have parties for every holiday with from 80 to 100 people attend. I am sure I have probably left somethings out. We only have 3 part time employees working at the ctr without are volunteer seniors we would not be able to keep the ctr open . we also have special programs about health issues,fraud and safety. Also we have planned trip to go on. Now with all this going on how can you say the ctr is not busy Get you facts straight before you start complaning

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  11. More about shutting down the senior ctrs. Do you know the the worker at the ctrs are part time with no benefits and that we sell books,puzzles and other things to make money for our ctr everyday. We also are having a material and craft sell march 25 and 26 a book sale in May and a garage sale in sept to make money for our ctr. We do not depend juat on the tax money to keep the ctr going

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  12. I am a south end senior but I use both ctrs. Eton the most I am involved in many of the programs. Many of the seniors get a well balanced meal at the ctr. WE pay taxes so why shouldn’t we have some place to go .A $25 a year charge to use the exercise does not seem high. The money is to be used to keep the equipment in good shape. There are many things the seniors can do for free. Our city is so spread out that is why we need 2 ctrs. would like all of our schools to be on one side of town. check the ctrs out before you judge. we need a place for are seniors and I have been told by seniors from other cities that they wish they had a senior ctr like ours that has so much going on and is so busy…

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  13. I’d like to respond to several posted comments. First of all I’ll ‘out’ myself – I am NOT a DH resident and I do volunteer at one of the DH senior centers. First of all opinion is definitely not fact – for all the talk of how somebody thinks the numbers are low for senior activity after lunch, in the exercise facilities, etc., I’d like you to offer some facts, rather than second hand opinions. to back up what I think are probab ly not even ACTUAL observations by the commenters on this blog. Everybody loves an opinion but personally I prefer something a little more concrete, facts. I am well aware of the tight economic times all SE MI communities face, every city function is belt tightening. No city activity will avoid will escape scrutiny, but don’t write the seniors off so hastily. It’s one of the best run programs I’ve seen for Seniors with the least ‘fat’ – Dearborn Heights residents should be proud and delighted for their City.

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  14. The last Mayor (Canfield) and the current Mayor were and are both guilty of pandering to the seniors.
    We need more young families to move into the city and we need safe and fun places for our children to go and socialize. The fact that we have two senior centers that are usually empty is unacceptable. Why do we not get to vote on this?? Every bond proposal to invest in the school district is voted down (thanks to the seniors) but they get to keep their two senior centers??

    I am trying not to be a senior basher here, but with kids in the district I am tired of seeing money poured into things like new exercise equipment that no one uses at two senior centers, while Crestwood High cant even get a new snack bar at the Football Field.

    So let me get this straight…we will let our schools go to hell but prop up our senior centers… is this how you grow a city????

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  15. Sean

    Oh I understand that, was just saying that there is this divide in the city North and South that in all the years I have lived here do not understand never been able to wrap my head around it.

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  16. Nancy

    Hi sorry you take issue with my statements, but my children went to public school and I paid for the same things you did the only thing I did not have to pay for was the books. This did not include what I bought for supplies for my home so they would have everything they ever needed to do a project.
    According to the council member I talked with the council did not know when they approved the buying of the equipment that the seniors were going to be charged to us it. They do not charge a fee to be at the center as far as I know. If the centers are not gong to be used enough then they should be closed down..

    Nancy I do not understand when you say this space is to limited, limited in what way limited in writing space?

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  17. Being a senior I take issue with your statements. When my children were in school I had to pay for all their books,pencils , paper etc. Now the taxpayers pay. Big difference having five children my personal cost for school supplies was enormous. Our education system now is a conversation all by itself. I have never been to the senior centers and never will. Not interested. Just curious why would you buy equipment and then charge to use it? Do they charge a fee to be at the center? I am sure a reasonable plan for all could be put in place. However I do not believe they would be used enough by seniors or families to warrant keeping them open. By the way this space is to limited.

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  18. Anonymous-

    We will have a new teen rec center in our city very soon. Wayne county has given tax dollars (about $8 MILLION of NSP money) to an organization to build a teen/family/woman friendly facility on Warren Avenue. They say it’ll be open for everybody, so that’s good news for you to be able to use it. Heck, the whole city should be using it if they’re getting 8 MILLION.

    Or, the kids can play in the abandoned houses that are still around because the county gave away $8 MILLION dollars for a basketball center rather than help pay for tearing down abandoned houses. You see, there are options in our community!

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  19. Anonymous

    We all need to come out and vote, Seniors vote most of the rest do not. I agree with every thing you said teen rec center do you want a riot on your hands something for family’s. Something that might want to get people to move here please you are making sense something that is not done around here. One thing that I do not understand the seniors that have grown kids well they use to be little and they raised them here how soon they forget.
    Not going to open them up to all, then closed after 1 pm and alternate days south and north or close them completely we all have to do our share to make sure the city is going to get through this.

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  20. Sean

    Not sure if they had limited hours or not the south end north end has to end I have been here for 18 years and it has been this way no more we are all Dearborn Heighters.

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  21. There is absolutely no reason both centers should be open if nobody is utilizing the facilities. But, good luck getting south-enders to go north and north-enders to go south! If I remember correctly, they had limited hours at one point. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

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  22. my wife and I have been wondering for years about the same thing. The senior citizens have Two recreation centers, but Our city can’t afford a family recreation center, or a community pool.
    Families are the majority in this city, however when it comes to improving schools, updating the parks for families, the seniors come out in droves to vote against it.
    My senior neighbor said to us, “why should I have to pay for improvements on schools, when my kids are all grown. We said, and why do we(my wife and I) have to pay for your unused senior centers? At least the schools are always full. sure, it’s two separate issues, but do have some correlation.
    How come we don’t have a teen rec center? That way they would be under supervision.
    Families in this city have limited options, because of the ideas and proposals being voted down, by people who don’t have kids anymore, or think they will have too pay more. that weakens a cities desirability when it comes to selling your house.
    If the city chooses to keep the senior centers open, then it should be on a part time basis, or expand it to families.
    It cost a lot for the up keep of those buildings, and they are empty. what a waste of taxpayer dollars.

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