The chairman of the Community Development District 8 Board of Supervisors on Friday joined the chorus of elected officials in The Villages calling for a reduction in the print frequency of the Recreation News.
CDD 8 Chairman Duane Johnson echoed the sentiments of Community Development District 9 Supervisor Don “Smoke” Hickman expressed one day earlier. Hickman said it is time to cut the $14,000 weekly press run and convert Recreation News to a once-a-month publication.
Johnson, a longtime officer with the Villages Homeowners Advocates and head of The VHA Community Foundation Board, called Hickman’s suggestion a good idea.
“I think that’s something that needs to be looked at,” Johnson said.
Like many other elected officials, Johnson indicated he’s been hearing from residents about the Recreation News, the pricetag for which was $800,000 last year. It is paid for with amenity money.
Critics of Recreation News complain that the same information is printed over and over. Recreation News is no longer a candidate for the recycling bin, as the recycling program in The Villages is ending and will be burned at a waste-to-energy facility.
“Under the circumstance we need to be prudent. People are really not satisfied. And we can do something about it,” Johnson said.
Earlier this week, Community Development District 2 Supervisor Bryan Lifsey assailed the Project Wide Advisory Committee about the “Gutenberg” mentality that he says keeps the information in the Recreation News shackled to pulp and press. Like many other elected officials in The Villages, Lifsey has suggested it’s time to catapult Recreation News into the modern digital age.