Tax increase could mean new water park for Osceola - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Tax increase could mean new water park for Osceola

OSCEOLA, AR (KAIT) -

A new water park and gym renovations may be in store for Osceola.

Osceola Parks and Recreation has plans for a $5 million water park plus heating and cooling additions to the community gym.

Overall, the project will cost $7 million.

The project costs include constructing the water park, paving the roads and sidewalks, creating parking, building drainage systems and adding a heating/cooling system in the gym that was built 20 years ago.

The water park will be constructed behind the current community center, between the baseball fields and the center building.

To pay for the project the citizens of Osceola will have to pass a 1-cent sales tax increase.

The current sales tax in Osceola is 10 cents.

The Parks and Recreation director said this project would benefit the city in many ways.

""It's a win, win situation," Michael Elphin said. "It brings people to your city, it lets them see what you got and in turn it feeds your businesses, it's just a win-win I believe that in my heart."

Elphin says with the addition of Big River Steel and other businesses Osceola could benefit from more entertainment like this park. Additions like this, he says, would bring more people into the city and continue growth.

"It is not the saving grace for the city, but it is a piece of the puzzle to make this town better," Elphin said.

Elphin also said a sales tax would be the best since many people visit Osceola, so it is not just residents paying the tax but also visitors.

Early voting for this tax increase opened Tuesday and will continue through Monday.

Election day will be on Tuesday, Aug. 11.

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