Harris Cty. Judge Values Park Planning Reports (TX)

Washington, DC, 9/23/03 -Harris County Judge Robert Eckels along with the Trust for Public Land (TPL) and the National Association of Counties (NACo) has introduced a new series of reports offering communities outreach and technical assistance for their park and recreational planning.

The report series, Local Greenprinting for Growth, focuses on using land conservation to shape growth. The reports offer practical information to local leaders thinking about growth strategies that link land conservation with water quality protection and community interest in protecting quality of life.

“This series will prove to be a valuable tool for local decision makers as they craft management strategies to address development issues such as conservation, water quality and the availability of recreational resources,” said Judge Eckels, also Chair for the NACo Environment, Energy and Land Use Steering Committee.

“American communities are seeking both new methods to improve quality-of-life and new programs to safeguard assets for the future,” said Will Rogers, President of the Trust for Public Land. “Open space protection and land conservation are tools that local officials use to shape growth and help maintain community character and these reports detail how to get that done-from a regional perspective.”

The four-part publication series includes:

  • Executive Summary (Overview)
  • Defining a Conservation Vision (designing a vision and plan; and creating dialogue between civic, business, and local government leaders)
  • Securing Conservation Funds (exploring federal, state, and private funding sources, partnerships, and incentives; researching local fiscal alternatives and needs; and designing public opinion polling and public financing ballot measures)
  • Acquiring and Managing Park and Conservation Lands (prioritizing specific tracts of land, determining acquisition criteria, and acquiring land; and developing and implementing land management plans)

“Protecting resources, while encouraging growth is an increasing priority for county officials,” said Larry E. Naake, Executive Director of NACo. “Utilizing strategies such as greenprinting will enable county governments to continue to protect and enhance the quality of life for its citizens.”

Information on downloading or purchasing the reports may be found at www.tpl.org/publications

This series is a collaborative project between TPL and NACo, with support from the Henry M. Jackson Foundation and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The National Association of Counties (NACo) is a full-service organization that provides legislative, research, technical and public affairs assistance to county governments. Created in 1935, NACo continues to ensure that the nation’s 3,066 counties are heard and understood in the White House and Congress. For more information visit www.naco.org

The Trust for Public Land is a national nonprofit land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens, and natural areas, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Since its founding in 1972, TPL has helped protect more than 1.6 million acres of land in 45 states. In Texas, TPL has protected more than 22,000 acres for communities, including areas in and around Austin, Dallas, Houston and San Antonio. The Trust for Public Land depends on the support and generosity of individuals, foundations, and businesses to achieve our land for people mission.