Help save California State Parks!
Please let everyone you know who cares about California state parks that they can sign a petition urging that funding be provided to save these extremely valuable places:
Update (Jun 15, 2009): This afternoon, the Budget Conference Committee weighed in on the Governor’s proposal to close state parks. On a divided vote, the committee voted to agree to eliminate General Fund support for state parks, but also to implement the State Park Access Pass. The State Park Access Pass would institute a $15 surcharge on vehicle license fees of non-commercial vehicles, in order to provide Californians with free day-use access to state parks and generate much-needed revenues for the system.
This is great news, but only one step toward a final budget victory. Since the vote was divided, this proposal still has a high hurdle to overcome, in order to be enacted. Please TAKE ACTION and send a message to your legislator supporting the State Park Access Pass and urging the Legislature to Save Our State Parks!
This one is truly urgent. A proposal to completely eliminate all funding for California state parks is currently being decided upon. If this unjustifiable proposal is passed, California will lose approximately 80% (some 223) of the current state parks within the next year. This is clearly social and economic madness being proposed by the “Governator” and his cronies, which would make a direct attack on our inherent human right to peaceful enjoyment of beautiful natural surroundings – and millions of Americans who live in (or visit) California have fought for this right over the past hundred years and more, only to have it potentially destroyed in a single year by this insane proposal.
Compare the fact that the total state park funding is less than $150 million annually with the fact that several of the current major highway upgrades in the state are costing in the order of $100-150 million each (and we are talking for a few miles worth of highway at most!). See http://california.construction.com/images/2008_25_hiwy_prjts.pdf for some of the current major highway projects in the state as of 2008 and you can quickly verify what I have just stated for yourself. So, simply not doing a single highway upgrade project of this magnitude would ensure that there is ample funding for state parks. What do you feel is more important?
Please forward this information to everyone you know who cares about the survival of the state parks in California.
A few other relevant facts about the state parks from http://ga3.org/campaign/budget_may09 –
FACT: The General Fund budget that state parks receive accounts for less than 1/10 of one percent [less than 0.1%] of the entire state budget.
FACT: Last year alone, there were over 80 million visitors to state parks – and all indications are that this year was going to be even higher.
FACT: For every dollar that funds the parks, $2.35 is returned to the state’s General Fund through economic activities in the communities surrounding the parks.