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Brown, Dem Lawmakers Still Working on State Park Funding

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(Sacramento, CA)
Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The proposal would draw money from several different funds - each with its own strings attached.  Because of that, it wouldn't be enough to take all 70 state parks off the Brown Administration's closure list - but it would help save some.  Democratic Senator Noreen Evans says the governor's Parks and Finance Departments seem open to the proposal:

Evans: "At the beginning of the year, I would say that they seemed to be really strongly determined to close as many parks as possible.  But it's my impression that they really backed off of that."

Some of the money would go toward fixing specific park projects like water systems and roads.  And some would be used to create an "enterprise fund" that could pay for more modern revenue collection systems.

The Department of Finance says it's still looking at the proposal and hasn't taken a position.

Proposed State Parks Funding Streams:

1) $13 million for an Enterprise Fund from voter-approved state bonds (Propositions 40 and 84). Intended to modernize revenue collection systems. 

2) $11 million from parks user fees for a separate enterprise fund with different money (and different strings attached) but for a similar purposes. Administration proposal that includes an incentive program for local districts.

3) $10 million from the "Alternative  and Renewable Fuel Vehicle Account" for park transportation.  Can be used to fix roads in parks and pay a portion of the salaries for officers providing law enforcement on those roads.

4) A long-term loan of up to $10 million from the "Clean Water Revolving Fund" for infrastructure repairs to parks' septic and water systems. 

5) Up to $21 million from the "Motor Vehicle Fuel Account" for any state park purpose. This money can  be used for the money's original intent (off-highway vehicle programs), but does not have to be.

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