Neighbors for Parks, Pools and Playgrounds (NP3) committee to
advance campaign for dedicated funding for our parks.
Millage Sought for
Grand Rapids Parks - MLIVE
Tax ask for Grand Rapids parks: 0:98 -mill for 7 years
Leading cities around the world
invest in their public parks because these assets enrich much more
than property values. They help improve citizen health and
well-being, provide kids with places to play, build up civic
pride, promote environmental stewardship, and improve quality of
life, which is essential to attract residents, visitors, and
Sadly, a decade of cost-cutting and
budget stagnation in the City of Grand Rapids has resulted in
historic under-funding of parks and deferral of basic investment
in the parks, pools, and playgrounds that all Grand Rapidians use
American cities on average annually
invest $49 per capita in parks operations, Grand Rapids now
annually invests less than $19 per capita and nearly $0 on capital
City staff in many ways
performs better than we might expect given current funding levels
and our community has stepped up repeatedly to volunteer, sponsor,
and support these public assets. Importantly, the City has conducted
in-depth parks department reviews to evaluate and improve
efficiency, boost productivity, and eliminate waste. Bottom line:
we will not cut our way any further to a better parks system. The
major limitation is funding.
We as a community must identify and
secure new revenue if we intend to offer a quality parks system.
Without renewed financial commitment, we will continue to preside
over the ongoing decline of our valuable parks system and the cost
of maintenance and repairs will only grow larger.
Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is
enthusiastically working with the Neighbors for Parks, Pools and
Playgrounds to ensure that their committee has good
information about the park system -building on our four years of
experience and studies- clearly identifies challenges and
opportunities, presents credible and reasonable solutions,
and forms the community connections necessary to advance
the critical campaign for dedicated funding to begin rebuilding
our park system assets.
Great parks make a great city!