Brown, Dem Lawmakers Still Working on State Park Funding
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Aired 6/20/12 on KPBS News.
The spending plan Democratic lawmakers passed last week contains $65 million more for state parks than Gov. Jerry Brown proposed. That money is intended to stabilize the system and prevent some park closures, but it's not clear if Brown is on board.
California state parks would receive an extra $65 million dollars under the spending plan now on Governor Jerry Brown's desk.
But legislative Democrats are still writing the precise rules for how that money could be spent - and it's not yet clear if the governor supports the changes.
"There's a number of last-minute issues that we have to resolve," said State Senator Noreen Evans. "We're still talking, and I'm very hopeful that we'll have a plan in place later on this week."
The new money comes with several strings attached. Some of it would create an "enterprise fund" to pay for modernizing park revenue collections. The goal is to create a more sustainable park system for the long run. Other funds would go towards specific projects like fixing roads or septic systems.
The money would help prevent the closure of some, but not all, of the 70 parks currently at risk.
Legislative staffers say the governor's Department of Finance is reviewing the proposal - but has not yet indicated its position.