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County Parks Goal: Fully Operational in Five Years

The goal is simple, tranform every park and facility--and find a way to be more self-funding.


Towering redwood groves, popular windsurfing spots and packed youth sports fields. San Mateo County Parks have it all--and supervisors want even more.

The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors Tuesday directed staff to come up with a five year plan to transform the parks system. Not that it's bad, they just want it to be better.

Ideas include adding tent camping at the Medium Security Facility in La Honda, adding sports fields at Coyote Point, and enhancing concessions at both Memorial Park and Coyote Point.

Supervisors directed staff to come up with a five year plan to phase-in enhancements. Revenue generating operations will be part of the mix.

Parks director Jim Porter told Patch, "San Mateo County Parks offer our residents and visitors an opportunity to experience redwood groves, marine reserves on the coast, take in views of the Pacific Ocean, San Francisco Bay, and hike and camp in some of the most scenic environments on the planet. The County puts great value in our Parks system and is working to enhance the visitor experience as we move forward."

According to Porter, the majority of this year's $8.4 million parks budget comes from the general fund. Last week, supervisors placed a half-cent sales tax increase on the November ballot. Money raised by the tax hike would go into the general fund.

Porter will report back to supervisors by the end of the year.

 

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Jerry B August 02, 2012 at 02:37 PM
I'd do a lot more at our county parks if only they'd allow dogs. I think this was some supervisors idea many years ago to outlaw dogs, and it's time to change. We'd love to go camping at SM Memorial but "Jake" isn't allowed.
Buck Shaw August 02, 2012 at 05:20 PM
Don't forget that every Car, Van, Truck, Motocycle, ATV, UTV anything with a motor and wheels that is Registered in San Mateo Co. pays an extra $10 for parks along with $15 for State Parks. I would like to see a Hikeing tral leading from Park to Park much like the Trail around the Bay. Although I don't think Penninsula Open Space Trust would cooperate with us. Openning a trail is counter to there unwritten policy of sequestering land for no person to use it.
Chip Krug August 02, 2012 at 08:36 PM
The end of your article suggests a linkage between the half-cent sales tax and parks funding. Revenues from the sales tax are not specifically allocated to the parks. In fact, it is more likely that the majority of this additional revenue will be offset by the expense of constructing and running the new San Mateo County jail, which will have an estimated annual cost of around $44 million.
Chip Krug August 02, 2012 at 08:39 PM
We could see increased funding for the parks and other common benefits if we can stop the new jail being built.

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