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Park board engages in heated discussion over air compressor for inflatables at Big Blue pit (video)

Mason City Park Board: Frank Pearson, Don Nelson, Kyle Early, Trpy Levenhagen and Steve Diaz
Mason City Park Board: Frank Pearson, Don Nelson, Kyle Early, Troy Levenhagen and Steve Diaz

MASON CITY – Donald and Hillary weren’t the only ones squaring off Tuesday night, as the Mason City Park Board clashed over installing an air compressor for inflatables at Big Blue pit.

The idea was championed by park board member Troy Levenhagen, who passionately attempted to sway the board to approve the compressor, which would have cost around $1,500. He says that citizens who want an air compressor for inflatables installed at Lester Milligan Park (Big Blue pit) brought the idea to him. Acting on their wishes, Mr. Levenhagen attempted to get the compressor installed at the park.

However, as he clearly spelled out Tuesday night to his fellow board members, he was dealt a stiff dose of what he called “politics” as he could not convince the board to go along with the idea, which had drug on for weeks. Other board members had voiced concerns about the idea over that time period. Chief among them were Don Nelson and Frank Pearson. Both men cited safety issues as a chief concern. Especially Mr. Pearson, who said that he “could not live with himself” if a child took an inflatable out onto the pit and then fell off and drowned. There is a sign at the pit that says “swim at your own risk,” it was said at the meeting. Technically, city code forbids swimming in waterways, NIT also was told. The other board members seemed to feel that the air compressor would “encourage” swimming at Big Blue. Both Mr. Pearson and Mr. Nelson declared that if it were feasible, they would outlaw swimming at Big Blue, but they said it would not be practical to have police there enforcing that ordinance (which actually already exists).

Another concern from the other four board members were vandalism to the pump and its hose.

By a vote of 4-1, the board shot the idea down.

Watch the entire discussion:

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