The Trust for Public Land Praises Mayors for Backing Urban Funding

The Trust for Public Land today praised almost 50 mayors across the country for their support of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, the nation’s premier tool for protecting open space in urban and rural communities nationwide without the use of taxpayer dollars.

“In cities across the country, mayors are leading the way in creating new parks, trails and playgrounds that provide safe outdoor recreation for millions of Americans,” said Will Rogers, President of The Trust for Public Land. “The Trust for Public Land thanks these leaders for their commitment to our children and a healthy future, and joins them in urging Congress and the Obama Administration to fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund.”

The Mayor’s letter cited the significant economic impact which urban parks and green spaces have on local economies. The Trust for Public Land (TPL) is working in cities across America through its Parks for People program to ensure that everyone-and especially every child-has access to a park within a ten-minute walk from home. TPL is the nation’s leader in building city parks that boost local economies and improve quality of life. TPL’s city projects include 176 community playgrounds in New York City, the showcase Railyard Park & Plaza in Santa Fe, Seattle’s dazzling Olympic Sculpture Park, and parks along the Atlanta Beltline, one of the nation’s most ambitious urban greening efforts.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) is a tool for creating vibrant open spaces in cities. It is supposed to receive $900 million every year from a percentage of the fees paid by oil companies to lease federal lands for oil and gas production. However, Congress has largely diverted money from the fund to other non-related purposes since the program’s creation in 1965.

You can read a copy of the mayors’ letter and a list of signers here (PDF).

The Trust for Public Land was created in 1972 and protects land for people to enjoy as parks, open space, and natural lands. It is the nation’s leading organization in creating parks in cities around the country, and in creating local funds for conservation.