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East Bay seeks bond issue for trails and parks

California's East Bay Regional Park District again leads the way in public support for funding.

By Hulet Hornbeck, American Trails Board Member

In 1988, the East Bay Regional Park District had a district wide ballot measure for a park land bond issue that would result in $225 million over a period of 20 years. An affirmative vote in excess of two-thirds percentage sent this money program on its way. The funds were primarily for large open space, parks and trails in this urban area of over two million people. Thus, this is and will continue to be an area of people laced with trails.

November 2008 represents the culmination of the 20 years. The editorial says a new vote for an additional period of time will keep this program going and not represent a tax increase (the taxes used to collect the $225 million will just continue&emdash;and now under new evaluation of lands, the new 20 year sum will be approximately half a billion dollars).

Because of the immense credibility that we have established over the years, the newspaper believes we will have two-thirds affirmative vote, again.

The editorial goes on to state that this program is essential to the quality of life enjoyed by the citizens of this area. The editorial recognizes population will increase and that open space and trails must follow suit.

The editorial represents top management policy of support of the third largest media chain in the United States.

Though the newspaper states that we lead the urban areas of the United States in regards to open space and trails&emdash;nevertheless the editorial has national significance as a precedent for what can be done elsewhere.

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