October 28, 2019
Fox San Antonio
Voters in San Antonio and across the state only have five more days if they want to vote early on 10 constitutional amendments. One of those amendments aims at getting consistent funding for our state parks.
Proposition 5 should help with the chronic lack of funding for projects to improve and repair things in our state parks. This amendment has a lot of support from Governor Greg Abbott and other state officials.
According to the Texas Wildlife Association, there is $750 million in deferred maintenance for our state parks.
Since 1993, funding for state parks comes from sales tax and sporting good stores, but the percentage of how much money they get varies from year to year. Basically, there is a loophole sending that money to other programs.
“That infrastructure is not only deteriorating but it wasn’t contemplated of a population that has risen to the level that it is today,” said David Yeates, CEO of the Texas Wildlife Association.
This amendment would make sure 100% of that money goes directly to state parks. Most of our state parks are anywhere from 40 to 80 years old and some need desperate help, especially for older roadways and buildings like visitor centers and restrooms.
“This is a really amazing opportunity, it’s not a tax, it’s a constitutional amendment that will create funding for the parks that we love,” said Anna Farrell Sherman with Environment Texas.
There are a number of state parks around the San Antonio area, including Government Canyon State Park, which is important for recharging our aquifer and also offers more than 40 miles of hiking trails.
The San Antonio Missions are part of the National Park System so this funding would not go to those parks.