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Homeowners miffed about ongoing vandalism on Emerald Parkway

Emerald Parkway homeowners are tired of footing the bill because of citizen vandalism on their private sports courts. IMAGE PROVIDED

Homeowners on Emerald Parkway are disgruntled by the ongoing vandalism and trespassing at their private sports facilities, and recently voiced their concerns to City Hall, stating they should not have to foot the bill any longer.
Emerald Valley West Homeowners Association (HOA) President Lori Eichelberger wrote to Creswell Mayor Dave Stram on behalf of the HOA stating that trespassing and vandalism has been a problem at their private courts since its inception over a decade ago.
Originally, the sports facility was unlocked – leading to extreme vandalism, breaking of the basketball backboards, theft of security cameras, destruction of the bathrooms and loitering in the parking lots.
Most recently, Eichelberger noted that vandalism occurred just before Christmas, followed with additional spray-paint tagging on homes in the HOA around New Year’s.
The HOA is responsible for the repairs and the maintenance of the facility, as well as the upkeep of the grounds, Eichelberger said. Their monthly dues go towards the upkeep and residents are given keys for access.
”With each act of vandalism, the HOA is forced to secure the facility further,” Eichelberger said.
She said they’re tired of footing the bill – which has accumulated about $25,000 in expenses over the last 10 years.
”What (the HOA doesn’t) appreciate is the public’s attitude that the facility should be open to the public at large and that we should continue to foot the bill,” she said. ”I spoke to the city planner (Maddie Phillips) and that was her attitude. How was that fair?”
She said she’s caught kids jumping the fences and unlocking the gates to get in on numerous occasions to play basketball, and sometimes asks them why they choose to trespass on a private facility.
The kids tell Eichelberger they are trespassing on these sports courts to play basketball because Creswell ”doesn’t have any decent facilities.”
She said she would like to see that change – for Creswell to acquire more sports facilities, so that it would reduce the impact on the Emerald Valley West neighborhood.
”The public doesn’t get to go to (Emerald Valley Golf Course) and play for free,” Eichelberger said.”The same rule should apply to the privately owned sports facilities.”
Mayor Stram requested that this item be placed on an upcoming city council work session agenda.