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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Padre Dam Water District Rescues Teen Center

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Action Wednesday (Feb. 15) by the Padre Dam Municipal Water District has saved Santee’s Teen Center, which was threatened by budget cuts triggered by the city’s loss of redevelopment funding.

The water district’s board approved a rent reduction for the teen center building from $1,036 per month to $1 per month, which will result in annual savings to the city of more than $12,400.

The rent reduction means local youths like Tyler Heskett, 12, and Kayla Slinkard, 11, can continue to use the center for after-school activities, including finishing their homework.

The city, which operates after-school and leadership programs for adolescents and teens, has leased the building at Santee Lakes from the water district since 2006.

The teen center was placed on the chopping block after the state on Feb. 1 took control of tax revenue previously used for municipal redevelopment programs, forcing Santee to scramble to make up for the loss of $1.2 million.

"We’re grateful to Padre Dam Water District for stepping up to preserve the site of a valuable program that nurtures young people and gives them a place to socialize in a supervised setting," said Bill Maertz, Santee’s director of community services.

The new lease is effective March 1 and runs through June 30, 2013.

The district’s CEO and General Manager, Allen Carlisle, said his board of directors "recognizes the benefits of recreational activities for the youth of Santee."

Carlisle added: "They also appreciate and seek to foster the positive working relationship between Padre Dam Municipal Water District and the city of Santee for the benefit of our residents.  It's good government when agencies work together and find solutions like this one."

Annual membership at the Teen Center is $20 per year for youth from grades 6 through 12 who are Santee residents; the fee for non-residents is $30 annually. After-school transportation is provided for grades 6-8 for $10 per week. Contact Teen Services (619) 258-4100 ext 222 for more information.

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