New Yorkers for Parks has developed a 2013 Parks Platform, based on the input received at a April 11thTown Hall Forum The platform’s 10 points (listed below in bullet form and attached as a longer policy document) are a set of recommendations aimed at ensuring that our city’s scarce public open spaces are preserved, well-maintained, and enhanced in all New York City neighborhoods. They are beginning a citywide campaign to publicize the platform and ask candidates to embrace it. Over the summer, they will hold meetings in each borough to discuss advocacy of the platform, and in mid-August, will hold a citywide rally with hundreds of parks advocates, both individuals and organizations, providing evidence of how important parks are to the voting public.
Please show your ongoing support for NYC parks by signing on as an endorser of the 2013 Parks Platform. When signing, please name a park that you use and care about. The goal is to have representation from a park in every NYC neighborhood. Sign the petition at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/parks-platform-2013/.
Please also help to spread the word by sending this request to others you know and groups you are involved with. Feel free to contact them with requests for additional information at email@example.com or 212-838-9410.
Let’s make sure the candidates know how much New York City voters value their parks!
PARKS PLATFORM 2013
We call upon the next Mayor and Administration to:
OVERHAUL HOW THE PARKS DEPARTMENT IS FUNDED.
1) The Parks Department should have its own discretionary capital budget.
2) The Parks Department’s maintenance budget should be increased, and funding for core functions should be baselined – meaning automatically renewed – in its annual expense budget.
3) The Parks Department provides an essential city service and should be staffed accordingly.
INCREASE THE TRANSPARENCY AND EFFICIENCY OF THE PARKS DEPARTMENT TO ENSURE EQUITABLE DISTRIBUTION OF RESOURCES.
4) The Parks Department should know the cost to maintain every City park, as well as the amount of public and private funding that supports each.
5) The Parks Department should adopt the best practices of other capital projects agencies to improve its own process.
6) Organizations in public-private partnerships with the Parks Department should report annual revenues, expenses and other critical financial information in a simple, consistent manner to be shared on the Department’s website.
RESTRICT AND STRONGLY REGULATE THE PRIVATIZATION OF PARKLAND.
7) Parkland alienation should not occur unless no other land is available to serve an essential public need.
8) State and local laws regulating parkland alienation should be strengthened to require earlier and broader notificationof alienation actions, and to mandate acre-for-acre replacement of lost parkland.
INTEGRATE PARKS PLANNING INTO NEIGHBORHOOD, CITYWIDE AND RESILIENCY PLANNING.
9) Parks are part of a broad network of public spaces, and City agencies should collaborate to maximize neighborhood open space and citywide environmental benefits.
10) The City should be more proactive in involving neighborhood residents in their parks, both as volunteer stewards and in planning for the future.
Click to download pdf document of the platform