Grand Rapids residents know city leaders have to make cuts, they just don't want to see them happen to youth programming.

At a public hearing held Tuesday evening, several people spoke out, asking commissioners to reconsider cuts in funding. The Recreation Reaps Rewards program currently gets about $2.5 million, mostly federal funds, but Grand Rapids kicks in roughly $500,000. As the city looks to cut more than $29 million, cutting that contribution is under consideration.

But Larry Barnes, who is a recreation service specialist in the city's Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department, believes the move will effectively eliminate several critical programs. He says the cuts would close three summer playground programs, two year-round sites, three teen activity programs, and would shorten the hours of summer programs.

City commissioners are expected to vote on the budget next week.