The following is the press release that accompanies the Parks for the Public ballot measure:
Supervisors Avalos, Campos, Mar And Mirkarimi Submit
“Parks for the Public” Measure for the November Ballot
To Stop The Leasing Out Of Rec & Park Facilities To Private Entities
“Parks for the Public” Allows Voters to Stop Privatization of the City’s Clubhouses
In response to public outcry over the privatization of City Parks and the imposition of fees to enter public open space, Supervisors Avalos, Campos, Mar and Mirkarimi submitted an ordinance to the voters which would require that public park and recreation facilities that are currently without charge remain free to the public.
“The people of San Francisco have long supported our parks, passing previous bond measures by a two-thirds majority and establishing the Open Space Fund. Voters’ strong support for public funding of our parks is based on the San Francisco value of having high quality parks and clubhouses that are accessible to everyone and free to the public,” said Supervisor John Avalos.
For many years there have been severe cuts to the Recreation and Parks Department, compromising the public interest and ushering in the policy of privatization of parklands and recreation facilities.
Seniors, children and parents have already lost access to many local clubhouses, such as the Excelsior Clubhouse, Sunnyside in Sunnyside/Outer Mission, the JP Murphy Clubhouse in the Inner Sunset, and the Laurel Hill Clubhouse in Laurel Heights.
Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi said, "What we know is the escalating fees have made many residents angry. We hear it all the time that they are being nickel and dimed to death. And my office has received complaints that demand, 'why are we being charged for what we have already paid for?' "
“We have placed a "PARKS FOR THE PUBLIC" ordinance on the November ballot to keep our parks open and free to all, and those parklands which are without entry fee to remain without entry fee to the public, and ensure that those facilities like the clubhouses which have not been leased out remain open and accessible to the public, while still available to neighborhood groups and community based non-profit organizations to offer programming and services to the community,” stated Supervisor Eric Mar.
“Escalating entry fees, high rental fees, and leasing out of neighborhood clubhouses to private entities all undermine the public interest and are not a good government substitute for General fund support for our vital parks and recreation system. The parks must be open to all and our recreation facilities must remain in public hands and equally accessible to the public,” said Supervisor David Campos.
To view a PDF copy of the Ordinance please download at the link below.
|Parks for the Public Ordinance.pdf||328.83 KB|