New Jersey’s parks are in a sad state of disrepair and neglect due to funding shortfalls. On election day, November 7, NJ voters will be asked to vote on a referendum for a constitutional amendment to create a stable source of funding for the improvement, construction, renovation and repair of state and local parks and natural areas. The amendment will not impose any new taxes but, rather, will reallocate a surplus of existing funds from corporate business tax revenue.
The Outdoor Recreation Alliance (ORA), a coalition of environmental and sportsmen’s groups, affordable housing advocates and environmental justice activists is working to secure voter approval of the referendum. ORA also supports the establishment of a dedicated funding source for land acquisition and budget increases for NJ Fish & Wildlife, Parks & Forestry and the Office of Natural Resources Restoration. WCAS has joined as a partner in these efforts. Funding for the Garden State Preservation Trust, overwhelmingly approved by voters in 1996, will soon expire and ORA asks for its renewal and $225 million for preservation over the next 10 years.
We strongly urge our members to vote in favor of the constitutional amendment so that our parks can be restored and revitalized. For more information on this topic, visit www.outdoorrecreationalliance.org.