Over the last few weeks the parks community has been successful in giving some parks on the closure list temporary reprieve. As the LA Times reported yesterday, there are a few parks on the closure list that have found reprieve from one source or another, be it private donors, foundations or nonprofits. Read the full story here.
By our own accounts, the following are parks that we at CSPF understand have received temporary reprieves from the July 1 closure.
- Castle Rock State Park: The Sempervirens Fund will donate funds to keep this park open for one year.
- Colusa-Sacramento River State Recreation Area: This park is currently being operated by the City of Colusa.
- Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park: The National Park Service is currently operating portions of the state park under a yearly agreement.
- Henry Coe State Park: This park is being kept open for three years under a donor agreement facilitated by the Coe Park Preservation Fund.
- Jug Handle State Natural Reserve: CSPF and Olmsted Park Fund recently announced a donor agreement which will keep the park open for one year.
- Los Encinos State Historic Park: A private donor will help keep this park open for one year.
- McGrath State Beach: Funding was secured to fix the sewage line in the park. Once the repairs are completed, this park should come off of the closure list altogether.
- Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve: The Bodie Foundation has signed a concession contract which will allow it to collect fees at the park, which will be used to keep the park open.
- Petaluma Adobe State Park: The Sonoma/Petaluma State Historic Parks Association has entered into a donor agreement to keep the park open through June 2013.
- Plumas-Eureka: Plumas-Eureka State Park Association has entered into a donor agreement to help cover operational costs and keep this park open for the next two years.
- Samuel P Taylor: The National Park Service is using a new $2.00 fee at Muir Woods to cover the basic operation of both this park and Tomales Bay State Park until June 30, 2013.
- Santa Susana SHP: CSPF has signed a donor agreement that will give this park a reprieve from closure for one year.
- South Yuba River State Park: A Revenue Generation Parking Plan has been proposed and agreed to by DPR that is expected to provide revenue critical to keeping the park open.
- Tomales Bay: The National Park Service is using a new $2.00 fee at Muir Woods to cover the basic operation of both this park and Samuel P Taylor State Park until June 30, 2013
Excitingly, CSPF was able to help out with a couple of the reprieves. In case you missed it:
- Jug Handle State Nature Reserve — On Friday, March 16, we announced in conjunction with the Olmsted Park Fund (OPF) an agreement with the California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) to give Jug Handle State Natural Reserve a reprieve from closure for one year. Together we will provide a combined $19,000 to the state to allow the park to be kept open with minimal services, but accessible to the public. Read more.
- Santa Susana Pass State Historic Park — On Thursday, March 22, we made a donation to the California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) to give Santa Susana Pass State Historic Park a reprieve from closure for one year. We will provide $21,000 to the state to allow the park to be kept open to the public, albeit with minimal staff and services. Read more.
As you can see, with a few exceptions, these are all temporary reprieves. While it is important for us all to celebrate these reprieves, we must not lose sight of the fact that California’s 279 state parks need long-term funding solutions to ensure that they stay open and protected- and permanently saved from closure.
Is your local park in discussions to find a reprieve? Let us know in the comments.