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Alpharetta, Milton to Share Parks, Recreation Programs

Residents of both cities won't have to pay higher out-of-town fees starting Dec. 1

Milton and Alpharetta will share use of their Parks and Recreation programs and facilities without having to pay higher fees in an agreement the two cities approved Monday night.

As Alpharetta has more programs, it wouldn't be an even trade, at least before Milton develops more programs and park space. Milton will pay a $325,000 in 2012, with that fee expected to decrease over time as Milton creates additional facilities and programs that are utilized by Alpharetta residents.

"This was really a great opportunity as far as our city residents," said Milton Council member Matt Kunz, as seen and heard on the city's live stream of its Monday, Nov. 5 council meeting.

He credited the city's Parks and Recreation Commission, Alpharetta Councilman Jim Gilvin and "the foresight to bring on Jim Cregge, the bridge that brought this thing together."

Cregge is Milton's interim director of Parks and Recreation, a former Alpharetta Recreation Commissioner and longtime Hopewell Youth Association supporter.

Kunz said he had a feeling that this bottom-up approach was a reasonable consolidation of the two cities' efforts, which "could one day help us bring about a Milton County."

Over in Alpharetta later on Monday evening, Alpharetta Councilman Gilvin said, “This agreement is another great win for the citizens of both communities.”

Gilvin was instrumental in negotiating the agreement, according to a news release from Alpharetta and Kunz.

 “Our citizens are neighbors, friends, and our kids attend the same schools. It makes sense that we find a way for those kids to be able to play in the same parks without some parents having to pay more than others for that to happen,” Gilvin said.

Prior to this agreement taking effect on Dec. 1, residents of one city who participate in a parks program offered by the other city have to pay “non-resident fees” that could add as much as 75 percent to the price they had to pay.

Alpharetta officials say the time was right for the cooperative agreement to be made because Milton is working to develop quality recreation programs and expand the park space within its system, the city's release said.

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